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Raymond T. Jackson

Biography

Raymond T. Jackson is an internationally celebrated concert pianist.. Also, as Professor of Music at Howard University, Washington, DC , he has successfully taught and served in administrative capacities. A life dedicated to music began in Providence, Rhode Island, where he received piano instruction from age five. Early mastery of the keyboard expanded six years later when study of the organ, along with the piano, helped inspire an international career as concert pianist and recording artist; scholar, researcher and author; organist and choral conductor; coach and accompanist; and lecturer, clinician and adjudicator.

Advanced musical studies began at the New England Conservatory of Music, Boston, where he received a Bachelor of Music Degree in Piano Performance. He holds the distinction of being the first in Conservatory history to simultaneously graduate first in his class, summa cum laude and receive the Conservatory’s highest honor: The George W. Chadwick Medal. In addition, he performed Beethoven’s Concerto #4 as graduation soloist with the Conservatory Orchestra. Twice in 2005–in recognition of his lifetime achievements–from the Conservatory he received its Outstanding Alumni Award; and in Washington, DC he was granted The Thomas and Birdie C. Smith Outstanding Achievement Award.At the prestigious Juilliard School, New York City, he studied with distinguished artist-teachers Beveridge Webster, Sascha Gorodnitzki and Ania Dorfmann, earning Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, and Doctor of Musical Arts Degrees. His doctoral research led to his dissertation, The Piano Music of Twentieth Century Black-Americans, and the 3-volume Black Composers: Their Lives and Piano Music. Earlier, in Paris he studied for a year with the celebrated French pianist, Jeanne-Marie Darre. In national and international piano competitions his prizes include The Marguerite Long International Piano Concour (Paris), The Tenth International Piano Competition (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil), The National Association of Negro Musicians Piano Competition (Champaign, IL), and the JUGG, Inc. New York Town Hall Debut Award. A native of Providence, RI, Dr. Jackson twice received the Rhode Island Citizen Citation for outstanding achievements in music and scholarship. Most recently, in 2008, he was awarded the Rhode Island Black Heritage Society Matilda "Sissieretta" Jones Award for the Humanities with a Focus on Cultural Literacy and the Arts. Years earlier, following numerous successes in Europe, Providence’s prestigious music organizations–The Chopin Club and The Chaminade Club–granted him Honorary Memberships. In addition, he was the first African-American, first musician, and youngest person to be elected into The Rhode Island Heritage Hall of Fame.

As soloist with symphony orchestras and in recitals, Raymond Jackson continues to receive ovations and the acclaim of audiences and music critics for his performances and interpretation of the classics. In many parts of the world his pioneering efforts have introduced the works of comparatively unknown composers of African descent through recitals, lecture recitals and recordings. As an artist-teacher he received the Howard University Faculty Excellence Award for his pedagogical skills in training, guiding and inspiring numerous young pianists. With his wife, Inez, they formed the Jackson Foundation and The Raymond Jackson Scholarship and Mentoring Program for Gifted Pre-College African-American Pianists.

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