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Micah Collier is one of Chicago’s young and promising jazz bassist. His artistic love of traditional jazz and hip-hop bass lines helps to create a powerful musical voyage. He is heavily involved with the Jazz Institute of Chicago, Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians, Hyde Park Jazz Society, and has been playing on Chicago’s jazz scene for the past three years. Micah was recently featured on NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt and is currently studying at the Brubeck Institute. As a talented upright and electric bassist, Micah has benefited greatly by the tutelage of renown bassists Brian Collier, Michael Manson, Rufus Reid, Larry Gray, Victor Wooten, Joe Policastro and many more. Micah has also had the pleasure of working under the teachings of Ernest Dawkins and his Young Masters Program, where he expands his knowledge of the music industry and jazz history. Micah has also had the opportunity to play with and be mentored by musicians such as Pharez Whitted, Corey Wilkes, Joan Collaso, Theo Croker, Lenny White, Charles Heath, Junius Paul, Justin Dillard and many more. Micah has had the pleasure of playing with Bobby Watson on the debut of the Micah Collier Trio at Andy’s Jazz Club and he presented a stellar performance of the Micah Collier’s AlécTet at Room 43 this past summer. Micah was invited back to Andy’s Jazz Club to debut his AlécTet in March 2018 and then contracted for a two-month run in May and June Micah has played at Chicago festivals such as Englewood Jazz Fest, 51st Street Jazz Fest, Taste of Chicago and the Silver Room Block Party, to name a few. Micah Collier brings a new resonance to contemporary jazz. Bridging the classic sounds of John Coltrane, Charlie Parker, and Thelonious Monk with the eclectic ease of Robert Glasper to create his unique sound of Jazz Fusion. Micah expands the understanding of jazz to be inclusive of other genres to create a music that feels good to the soul.
Alexis Lombre is a young jazz pianist who discovered early that the true essence of music is not just about what you hear but how music makes you feel. Her musical mission is to keep the ‘Soul’ in music alive. The 2017 release of her debut album, Southside Sounds, does just that, as it is a soulful reflection of her upbringing on Chicago’s Southside. This collection of her original compositions is an attempt to pay homage to the southside’s lively artistic, cultural heritage. In addition to her debut record, she was featured on Live The Spirit Residency Presents: “The Young Masters” (2016), and Mikel Patrick Avery’s “Music for a 1/2 Sized Piano” (2014). Alexis has performed at some of jazz’s major venues and festivals in Chicago, Detroit, New York City, Newark, St. Louis and Kansas City. Most recently, she celebrated the release of her debut CD at Chicago’s historic Jazz Showcase. She has shared the stage with international renowned jazz musicians such as Ernest Dawkins, Ingrid Jensen, Kendrick Scott, James Carter, Marion Hayden, Gayelynn McKinney, Bobby Watson and, has studied with Geri Allen, Willie Pickens and former Jazz Messenger, Benny Green.
Yanna Cello, also known as Ayanna Williams, is classically trained but trapfully raised. Yanna is a classically trained cellist of 16 years from the south side of Chicago. Yanna has been performing nationwide since the age of 13 and has been most recently featured in the Chicago Tribune’s RedEye for pushing the boundaries of traditional classical instruments in an era of electronic music. Yanna has also been featured in several other media outlets such as ABC7 Chicago, NBC News, WFMT Radio, WTTW Chicago, NAACP’s Crisis Magazine, Ebony Magazine, and Windy City Live. After quitting the cello for seven years, Yanna truly missed her passion. She began playing the cello again in November 2017 and fell in love with her talents in an entirely new way. Yanna decided to break away from the strict classical mold and pave her own path which incorporates her love for trap, rap, hip hop, reggae, and R&B with the classical remnants of composers such as Bach, Haydn, and Brahms. Yanna’s cello journey shows that it is never too late to start, quit, and restart. It is never too late to learn, quit, and relearn. However, her classical and trap cello musicianship doesn’t solely stop at her melodic sounds. She attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign to double major in Economics and Environmental Sustainability. After earning her Bachelor’s in 2015, she then earned her M.Ed. in Higher Education from Loyola University Chicago in 2017. Her background is a melting pot between quality music education advocacy and activism, uplifting classical music and the fine arts within underrepresented communities, working with youth through classical music. Yanna plans on pursuing her PhD, focusing her research on using classical music as a preventative method for crime and incarceration within inner city youth and using classical music as a form of restorative justice for those in the prison system.