MSM Jazz Orchestra Offers Rare Opportunity to Hear Miles Ahead Live Miles Davis’ Classic 1957 Album with Arrangements by Gil Evans Will be Played in Its Entirety

November 4, 2016 (NEW YORK, NY) – Manhattan School of Music (MSM) Jazz Orchestra, under the musical direction of Justin DiCioccio (MM ’71), offers a rare opportunity to hear a track-by-track live performance of Miles Davis’ classic 1957 album, Miles Ahead, featuring the original arrangements by legendary pianist, arranger, composer, and band leader Gil Evans. The concerts will take place at MSM’s Neidorff-Karpati Hall (formerly Borden Auditorium) on November 11 and at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, Jazz at Lincoln Center on November 21 (two sets).

Gil Evans played an important role in the development of orchestral jazz, cool jazz, modal jazz, free jazz, and jazz fusion, and collaborated extensively with Miles Davis. On Miles Ahead, Evans arranged the ten pieces that make up the album into a suite, each piece flowing into the next without interruption.

“Evans’ scores for Miles Davis on Miles Ahead, and their subsequent collaborations on Porgy and Bess (1959) and Sketches of Spain (1960), are among the most treasured jazz works of all time,” comments DiCioccio, who is conducting the 19-piece MSM Jazz Orchestra at these performances. “This will be a treat for us – and for all Miles Davis and Gil Evans fans.”

Davis played flugelhorn throughout the album, while the MSM concerts will feature NEA Jazz Master Dave Liebman on soprano saxophone. According to Liebman, his approach to the music is to “concentrate on tone and color, and above all, be lyrical. Exchanging the soprano sax for the trumpet allows me to shape the music in some ways, but of course the specter of Miles is always there, and I’ve tried my best to be true to his approach.”

For more information, please contact:

Caryn Toriaga | Manager of Public Relations
917.493.4429 /


Fri, November 11: Neidorff-Karpati Hall, Manhattan School of Music (7:30 pm)
Mon, November 21: Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, Jazz at Lincoln Center (7:30 & 9:30 pm)
MSM Jazz Orchestra
Justin DiCioccio, Music Director
Featuring guest soloist Dave Liebman, Soprano saxophone

Miles Ahead Arrangements by Gil Evans

John Carisi Springsville
Leo Delibes The Maids of Cadiz
Dave Brubeck The Duke
Kurt Weill, Ira Gershwin My Ship
Gil Evans, Miles Davis Miles Ahead
Gil Evans Blues for Pablo
Ahmad Jamal New Rhumba
Bobby Troup, Leah Worth The Meaning of the Blues-
J.J. Johnson Lament
Harold Spina, Jack Elliot I Don’t Wanna Be Kissed (by Anyone but You)

Justin DiCioccio is internationally recognized as one of the foremost jazz educators of our time. In January 2001, he was inducted into the Jazz Education Hall of Fame. His keen insight into teaching and his inventive approach have earned him the title “the musician’s teacher.”

In 2002, Mr. DiCioccio was named MSM’s Assistant Dean/Chair, Jazz Arts Program; in 2011 he was named Associate Dean. Under his leadership, the jazz curriculum has been completely restructured, and a new jazz DMA program was introduced. He has put into action his concept of the complete artist-musician – performer, composer, and pedagogue – by developing partnerships with public schools, community organizations, cultural institutions, and the music industry. He initiated the addition of a jazz component to the Precollege Division, making Manhattan School of Music one of the few institutions in the country to offer jazz programs at all levels. Mr. DiCioccio also directs international jazz programs, in partnership with Manhattan School of Music.

Mr. DiCioccio has served as program director and clinician for Carnegie Hall Jazz Education and acts as a consultant to Jazz at Lincoln Center and Wynton Marsalis. He designed, developed, and directed the award-winning LaGuardia High School of the Arts jazz program, the first fully accredited secondary jazz program in the United States.

Mr. DiCioccio is the recipient of a citation from the mayor of New York for “Distinguished and Exceptional Service to Young Instrumentalists” and is active with the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts. He is a three-time recipient of the Presidential Scholars teaching recognition award by the U.S. Department of Education. In May 1998, the Commission Project, in partnership with the New York City Board of Education, created the JD Award for Outstanding Service to Music in New York City Schools. On March 1, 2010, he was confirmed as the State Department Appointed Cultural Envoy Jazz Ambassador to Tbilisi, Georgia.

Mr. DiCioccio’s performing and conducting credentials include concerts, commercials, Broadway shows, and recordings with jazz, orchestral, rock, and new music groups. He has performed with Arturo Sandoval, Randy Brecker, Chuck Mangione, Phil Woods, Stan Getz, Red Rodney, and Clark Terry. Mr. DiCioccio is a former member of the Rochester Philharmonic and for five years was a member of the Marine Band, “The President’s Own,” in which he served as the official White House drummer.


The Manhattan School of Music Jazz Orchestra, under the direction of Justin DiCioccio, performs regularly with major artists such as Eliane Elias, Jon Faddis, Joe Lovano, Bob Mintzer, Dave Liebman, Wynton Marsalis, and Phil Woods. The ensemble has appeared at jazz festivals including Montreux, Umbria, and the North Sea, as well as at the Clinton White House with David Sanborn, and at numerous jazz education conferences. It has also been heard at New York City jazz clubs, including the Jazz Standard and Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola (where it performs regularly), as well as at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and at Carnegie Hall in Stern Auditorium performing a children’s concert. In partnership with the Jazzheads label, the MSM Jazz Orchestra, conducted by Justin DiCioccio, has recorded and released CDs of the critically acclaimed Miles Davis-Gil Evans trilogy, Miles Ahead, Porgy and Bess,and Sketches of Spain,with NEA Jazz Master Dave Liebman performing the Miles Davis trumpet solos on saxophone.


Manhattan School of Music is one of the first conservatories in the United States to acknowledge the importance of jazz as an art form by establishing undergraduate and graduate degree programs in jazz. It is also one of the richest programs of its kind, thanks to systematic and rigorous conservatory training combined with a myriad of performance and networking opportunities in New York City. In addition to a variety of small combos, student ensembles include the Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra, Concert Jazz Band, Jazz Orchestra, Jazz Philharmonic, and Chamber Jazz Orchestra. Under the leadership of longtime faculty member and eminent jazz artist-and-educator Justin DiCioccio, the program strives to produce students who perform, compose, and teach with equal facility and passion.


Founded as a settlement music school by Janet Daniels Schenck in 1918, today Manhattan School of Music is recognized for its 950 superbly talented undergraduate and graduate students who come from more than 50 countries and nearly all 50 states; a world-renowned artist-teacher faculty; and innovative curricula. The School is dedicated to the personal, artistic, and intellectual development of aspiring musicians, from its Precollege students through those pursuing postgraduate studies.

Offering both classical and jazz training – and, beginning in fall 2016, a Bachelor's degree program in musical theater – MSM grants Bachelor of Music, Master of Music, and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees, as well as the Professional Studies Certificate and Artist Diploma. Additionally, true to MSM's origins as a music school for children, the Precollege program continues to offer superior music instruction to young musicians between the ages of five and 18. The School also serves some 2,000 New York City schoolchildren through its Arts-in-Education Program, and another 2,000 students through its critically acclaimed Distance Learning Program.