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Judi Silvano

What Judi Silvano has been able to accomplish thus far gives the appearance of multiple artists' careers strung together—but it's all Judi. In fact, she's always got a new project ready to fly, oftentimes dovetailing and overlapping her previous efforts. Born in Philadelphia, with a degree (in both Music and Dance) from Temple University, Judi made her way to New York City in 1976 where she launched her career as an improviser—of dance at first. But jazz would not be far behind. An alchemist of music and movement, her career as a choreographer and dancer led her straight to NYC's downtown music scene where her improvisational spirit could run free. It also steered her toward what would become a long-term collaboration with saxophonist Joe Lovano that began in 1980 and continues to this day. Throughout the '80s, you could alsofind Judi on any given Monday night at the Village Vanguard where the Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra held forth, soaking in the great charts of Thad Jones. Before long, Judi could sing along with all the lead trumpet parts. You can trace the roots of her unique horn-like approach to vocalizing directly to this experience. To date, Judi Silvano has 8 recordings to her credit, including 1997's "Vocalise" on the Blue Note label and a landmark duo recording with Billie Holiday’s last accompanist, the great pianist Mal Waldron “Riding A Zephyr” on Soul Note Records. She's led multiple vocal groups from Voices of Juniper to Voices Together, won numerous awards and grants (Meet the Composer and New York State Council on the Arts two times), been named one of the Top 10 Vocalists in Down Beat magazine 4 times and has contributed as a jazz journalist/columnist to All About Jazz & Jazz Improv Magazine for several years. Silvano has been the subject of an original composition "Sketches for Silvano" by Lori Dobbins for vibes, percussion and voice (recorded on Capstone Records) and premiered Kenny Werner’s “No Beginning, No Ending” in May 2007, commissioned by MIT and written for her with fellow soloists Joe Lovano and Kenny Werner and Wind Orchestra. As a gifted educator with a great heart (that comment comes straight from her students), Ms. Silvano has passed on her knowledge and experience to a multitude of young musicians both privately and through her Vocal Improv workshops in NYC, and at such esteemed institutions as Banff International Center for the Arts, Manhattan School of Music, Vassar College and Rutgers University.

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Concert Schedule

Album Discography

Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

Lessons Learned

Unit Records


My Dance

JSL Records


Indigo Moods

Jazzed Media


Cleome: Live Takes

JSL Records


Women's Work

JSL Records



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