Dear PJCE Community,
Portland Jazz Composers Ensemble stands in solidarity with those who are grieving for the lives of Black Americans killed by police violence, and with those calling for necessary and overdue reforms.
In pursuing our mission, we have always endeavored to engage a diverse community of composers, musicians, audiences, and staff, most recently with Jasnam Daya Singh’s “Ekta: The Unity Project.” And, this short documentary produced by Sika Stanton features interviews with the From Maxville to Vanport project team members Marilyn Keller, S. Renee Mitchell, Ezra Weiss, Kalimah Abioto, and Gwendolyn Trice about their work on this Black history music project.
We are proud of these accomplishments, but we also recognize that as an organization dedicated to a medium created by African Americans, there is much more that we can do to support racial justice. We will continue our commitment to diverse and inclusive programming, and in our strategic planning process that we are currently working on, we will make new commitments to strengthening our equity work.
We believe in the power and the importance of music even in times of crisis. In our view, jazz musicians are more than performers, improvisers, and composers, they are cultural soothsayers as well.
We stand for the lives of Black people. If you would like a way to support Black communities in our area, follow the links below in the list below to connect with several incredible organizations that could use your support.
We thank you for your trust, and for your support this Juneteenth!
The Portland Jazz Composers Ensemble Board of Directors