• Our History  Where Jazz and Classical meet in harmony

    Our History

    Where Jazz and Classical meet in harmony


The Chicago Jazz Philharmonic was born out of an invitation from the Jazz Institute of Chicago to Artistic Director, Orbert Davis to “think big” when planning his appearance at the 2004 Jazz Festival. This performance marked the first time for a resident Chicago Jazz artist to headline the festival, not to mention, being accompanied by a 55-piece jazz orchestra.

What many concert goers do not know is that the Chicago Jazz Philharmonic was originally an education organization that grew an orchestra arm. This unique development ensures that education is at the core of CJP's mission and programs.

Most recently the organization’s achievements were recognized with the prestigious 2016 MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions. As CJP enters our second decade, our dreams include expanding and deepening international partnerships, strengthening ties with local Chicago communities through programming that reflects the particular needs of our home city, and deepening our education programs to serve cross-genre music learners of all ages and levels.

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