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  • Donny Thompson, Exec. Dir.

"JOI of Giving Tuesday" at Monzu' Funds Youth Education, Outreach, and Performance Programs

Thank you to all who came out to Monzu Italian Oven + Bar for Jazz Outreach Initiative's fall fundraising jazz benefit dinner. The event was held on November 28th, "Giving Tuesday," which is globally the single largest day of giving. While we're still determining the final outcome of the event, we can report that everyone had a wonderful time!

Chef Giovanni Mauro and his amazing team at Monzu once again wowed our guests with outstanding gourmet Italian food, wines, cocktails, and desserts. Upstairs in the private dining loft overlooking the main room, our ticketed VIP guests enjoyed a plated dinner from an attentive wait staff along with a special gift of a JOI branded cocktail glass to take home. Downstairs they had reserved front row seating to the performances. The main dining room guests welcomed a generous buffet and passed hors d'oeuvres and of course coffee and desserts. During dinner, guests were thrilled by the authentic Italian folk songs performed by our JOI Jazz Orchestra guitarist, Jimmy Tripi, who has an impressive catalog of music from his Italian and Sicilian heritage.

For entertainment, our JOI Co-founder and VP of Education & Programming, Gary Cordell, lined up a who's who of musicians representing three generations sharing the same stage. This showcases the vision of Jazz Outreach Initiative to ensure jazz thrives through our next generation by passing the torch from the current ones. Our professional musicians included Bob Chmel on drums, John Belzaguy on bass, and Joey Singer on piano. Four of our Las Vegas Youth Jazz Orchestra current students and alumni performed together and then as the evening progressed, filled into the professional trio. The evening progressed and like last year's event, ended as a fun jam session with guests including JOI's own Board VP and highly regarded vocalist, Linda Woodson, vocalist Tim Molineux, vocalist/guitarist Jimmy Tripi, JJO pianist and Director of the UNLV Division of Jazz & Commercial Music, Dave Loeb, and JOI Board President and trombonist, Curt Miller.

A reminder that we still have the JOI of Giving Online Auction running through December 6, 2023 and are still in campaign to raise funds which help JOI use jazz to connect the language of music to the language of life through education, outreach, and performances. Auction AND Donation are below:

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