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Students, the Dee Spencer Trio and the SFSU Jazz Combo/Vocal Jazz Ensemble


Women in Jazz &
World Music Graduation Concert

Date(s) & Time(s): Friday May 3, 7:00pm
Duration: 75 mins w/out intermission
Location: 544 Capp St, San Francisco, CA 94110
Venue: Community Music Center

Ticket Information


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Women in Jazz & World Music is funded by:
California Arts Council Creative Youth Development grant


Women in Jazz & World Music Concert

Women in Jazz and World Music (WJWM) is a free concert / recital led by Dee Spencer on keyboards with Jewell McMillon on bass, Jay Hernandez on drums and Michelle Jacques as Mistress of Choirs! The evening will also feature a performance by the SFSU Jazz Combo/Vocal Jazz Ensemble.

The occasion is the graduating event for Dee's students from the second Women in Jazz & World Music vocal training course. The evening will feature singers who have spent a month-long intensive with Dee and five celebrity guest lecturers. In addition to learning professional singing techniques, they have also studied the lives of some of the legendary women in the history of jazz and world music. They will give their renditions of classic songs originally covered by the likes of Ma Rainey, Bessie Smith, Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald and Nina Simone.

Dee Spencer Biography
Dee Spencer is a Professor of Jazz and Musical Theatre in the School of Theatre & Dance at San Francisco State University (SFSU). Dee received her B.S. from Florida A&M; M.M. at Washington University in St. Louis; and EdD, University of San Francisco.  Dee founded the Jazz Studies degree program in the School of Music at SFSU and served as director for five years. Dee founded the San Francisco Jazz Organization (SFJAZZ) education program. Her former students include recording artists/producers, Braxton Brothers, Beyonce’s music director, saxophonist Tia Fuller, and Lauren Hill’s music director, saxophonist Howard Wiley.

Michelle Jacques (Choir Master)
For over 20 years Michelle has taught educational programs for the San Francisco Symphony's Adventures in Music, Cazadero Performing Arts Family Camp, education programs/workshops at Stern Grove, the Bay Area Discovery Museum, Yerba Buena Gardens in San Francisco, CMEA Bay Section Conference Clinician, conductor for the Oakland Youth Chorus, lecturer at University of San Francisco on music standards in education K through 8 and choral director at the Oakland School for the Arts 6th through 12th grades.

Jewell McMillon (Bass)
Jewell is a bassist, music artist and mathematician from the Bay Area who has been a member of the musician and artist community in the Bay for the last five years. She is heavily influenced by all styles of Black American Music and her peers in the community. She’s recently had the pleasure of being a member of bands that played at the 2023 Black Joy Parade, The Chapel, and California Academy of Sciences and is excited about continuing to share community and music with the Bay Area and beyond.

Jayla Hernandez (Drums)
Jayla is a drummer, student and jazz enthusiast, who embodies the sound of West Oakland soul infused with the energy of young artists just like herself. Jayla Graduated from Oakland School from the Arts in 2020 and is currently pursuing her BM in Jazz Studies at San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Jayla has had the pleasure of working with various artist through the years and plans to continue that journey while playing and exploring the world of Black Music.

SFSU Jazz Combo/Vocal Jazz Ensemble
The SFSU Jazz Combo/Vocal Jazz Ensemble under the direction of Dr. Dee Spencer, is comprised of 15-20 undergraduate students currently enrolled at San Francisco State University. Past students include jazz stars The Braxton Brothers and guitarist/songwriter/producer Nate Mercereau. The ensemble actively performs on and off-campus throughout the academic year and has appeared in venues such as the SFJAZZ Center. The ensemble is accompanied by pianist Anthony Del Barrio.

San Francisco International Arts Festival
Phone Number: 415-399-9554 | Email: [email protected]
1222 Sutter Street, San Francisco, CA 94109



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