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Principles

​We believe the potential for real and powerful music-making lies within every individual, at all ages and all skill levels, and that this inborn spark of musicality is best kindled by playing with others.

 

In opposition to the scarcity mentality that holds music captive in the songs and scores of star composers, we proclaim that music grows from each of us like seeds sprout from the earth, if only we cultivate it.

 

Cultivating music means: dedication to instrumental craft and technique; careful study of intellectual and spiritual foundations, from music theory to metaphysics; and above all, regular gatherings for the work and play of collective music-making.

Improvisation represents the ultimate musical expression of human freedom. But freedom is not anarchy, nor is improvisation pure spontaneity. Freedom is nothing other than self-determination, and the practice of improvisation therefore requires the utmost discipline.

We stand in the lineage of the Creative Music tradition of Black American music, which teaches that the flourishing of each of us is linked to the flourishing of all. As the Ubuntu philosophy proclaims, “we become human through other humans.”

Music-making is world-building. We are playing into being the world in which we want to live.

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