First Lady Michelle Obama presents The National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award to Artists Collective student, Lauren Horn, and Founding Executive Director, Dollie McLean, in the East Room of the White House. Members of the Youth Jazz Orchestra performed with tap dancer, alumni, instructor Corey Hutchins and dance student, Lauren Horn. Lauren has been a student of the Artists Collective since the age of 3.

2015 Summer Program finale' performance
"Songs in the Key of Life"
Teen African Piragramic Dance

Black Wall Street
Jackie McLean Memorial celebration 2015

Yaboo Rites of Passage Council of Elders and Initiates.

2014 Artists Collective, Capital Workforce Partners Summer Program pastel portraits

Wynton Marsalis with Youth Jazz Orchestra students after his benefit concert for musicians of New Orleans held at the Collective.

Steel Pan Student Performance

The great Jack DeJonette sharing knowledge with drum and saxophone members of the Jackie McLean Youth Jazz Orchestra.

Martial Arts Workshop

NEA Jazz Master Sheila Jordan with The Steve Khun Trio in concert

2015 Summer Program Finale' Performance
"Songs in the Key of Life" Children African Dance

Group standing with  Josh Groban Artists Collective with Josh Groban, Manchester, New Hampshire as one of 42 organizations nationally to receive a donation from his Find your Light Foundation

Student and Special Events 2018

Fall Workshops begin September 18
New Seeds Music Showcase Friday, March 16
6:00 pm
Young Urban Voices Saturday, March 17
2:00 pm
Piano Recitals May 10, 11
6:00 pm
Music Showcase Saturday, May 19
10:00 am
Yaboo Rite of Passage Ceremony Tuesday June 5
6:30 pm
Student Showcase FestivalTuesday, June 5
6:30 pm
Saturday, June 9
2:00 pm
Rites of Passage and Neighborhood Studios Summer Program July 2 - August 10
O-H-A-T-A-C (Open House At The Artists Collective) Sunday, November 18
2:00 pm
Pre-Kwanzaa / Christmas Celebration Saturday, December 15
2:00 - 5:00 pm


Jackie McLean International Arts Festival 2018

Music in the Atrium
A new music series showcasing Greater Hartford's diverse, talented groups representing many genres of music. Mix, mingle, enjoy!

Emery Smith Trio

Friday, January 12
6:00 - 10:00 pm
$15

A native of Hartford, CT, pianist Emery Smith is widely regarded as "the patriarch of Hartford's first Golden Age of Jazz." Influenced by Theolonius Monk and Bud Powell, Emery Smith has performed with Coleman Hawkins, Howard McGhee, Tina Brooks, and Dizzy Gillespie. Locally, he was the co-leader with Lou West of the Progressive Arts and Culture Company 15 piece band which performed at the first Arts Festival in Hartford. Mr. Smith also performed with Harold Holt and Percy Nelson.

As a leader, composer and arranger, Emery Smith has led a Quintet performing in schools, colleges, and museums, as well as lecture demonstrations.

Call (860) 527-3205 for more information.



Alex Nakhimovsky and Friends
Featuring: vocalist, June Bisantz . bassist, Avery Sharp

Friday, March 23rd
6:00 - 10:00 pm
$15

Pianist Alex Nakhimovsky enjoys a versatile career as a performer, recording artist, producer, arranger and educator. After emigrating to the United States from Russia in 1978, Alex studied at the Hartt School of Music in Hartford, CT, with Jackie McLean and Luiz Castro among others.

He has been a full-time faculty member at the Greater Hartford Academy for the Arts, and adjunct faculty at the University of Hartford's renowned Hartt School of Music since 1999.

Alex's musical accomplishments as a Jazz and Classical artist include musical direction and arranging, as well as solo and ensemble performances, visiting over 50 countries and 6 continents. He has toured throughout the United States, Russia, Japan and Israel, performing with Jazz legends Benny Golson, Jackie McLean, Jimmy Cobb, Valery Ponomarev, Sheila Jordan, Curtis Fuller, Victor Bailey and Grammy nominated artists, Bill Evans and Carla Cook.

As co-producer of Russia's Baikal Waves International Jazz Festival since 2006, Alex has made cross-cultural connections for several Russian Music Festivals, bringing important international artists, such as Tania Maria, Richard Bona, Mike Stern, Jeff Tain Watts and Jeff Lorber, to Russia.

Alex Nakhimovsky's impressive classical repertoire, which spans the gamut from Bach to Gershwin, has led to performances on some of America's greatest stages, including Carnegie Hall and Steinway Hall in New York City. In addition to his multi-level career as a performer, recording artist and concert producer, Alex accompanies and arranges for notable singers from a wide range of musical genres, including jazz, pop, broadway and classical singers.

The Artists Collective is pleased to present Alex Nakhimovsky and Friends:
June Bisantz, vocals, Avery Sharpe, bass, Ed Fast, drums, and Dan Liparini, guitar.

Reservations suggested. Call (860) 527-3205 for more information.



Jackie McLean Memorial Celebration

Rene’ McLean
“Ancestral Calling, Music of the Spirit”


Saturday, May 19th
8:00 p.m.
$25 advance
$30 at the door

Born and raised in New York City, Rene McLean renowned Multi-reed Instrumentalist (Alto, Tenor, Soprano saxophonist, Flutes) began his musical training at the age of 9 under the tutelage and guidance of his father, world renowned alto saxophonist, Jackie McLean. Rene' recounts: "My Dad began giving me the saxophone in stages beginning with the mouthpiece then the neck and finally the horn". As an adolescent, the young McLean was already performing with local R&B, Latin and neighborhood bands, making his major debut with his father's band in the mid-1960's while he was performing with other professional groups of varied musical traditions.

Rene' continued his studies with his father through primary and secondary school as well as with the pioneering Robert F. Kennedy inspired Jazz Arts Society, HARYOU ACT Cultural Program, and the Clark Terry Youth Band, Jazz Mobile and later at the New York College of Music (N.Y.U.), and the University of Massachusetts. He studied privately with such Jazz luminaries as Sonny Rollins, Frank Foster, George Coleman, Kenny Durham, Jackie Byard, Barry Harris and Hubert Laws.

He has performed, and recorded as a leader and featured sideman with the crème de la crème of African American Music such as: The big bands of Dizzy Gillespie, Lionel Hampton- All Stars, Tito Puente, Frank Foster, Sam Rivers, Ray Charles Orchestra and the Cape Town Symphony Orchestra; Horace Silver, Dr. Billy Taylor, Woody Shaw and Hugh Masekela, whom McLean performed with for many years: vocalists, Miriam Makeba, Abby Lincoln, Little Jimmy Scott, Artur Prysock, and bassist, Jaco Patorius, to name a few. Rene’ McLean has collaborated with premier poet-activists Amiri Baraka (Leroi Jones), and Jayne Cortez and served as Musical Director/Composer for the production of Ntozake Shange's play "For Colored Girls", choreographed and directed by George Faison and "Oedipus The King" directed by Jonathan Wilson at the Hartford Stage Company.

Rene' McLean draws inspiration and insight from the rich diversity of the African American tradition and various sources of world music genres with emphasis on Eastern and African traditions. He has been the recipient of the National Endowment for the Art's fellowship awards. He was awarded the prestigious Creative Artist Fellowship by the Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts to reside in Japan to research traditional Japanese music and culture as well as to teach and perform. He has also spent time researching musical traditions and performing in Bali, Indonesia.

Rene' has taught, conducted workshops, and lectured at numerous universities and cultural programs in the United States, Caribbean, including Cuba, as well as South America, Europe, Japan, Indonesia, South Africa, Lesotho, Botswana, Swaziland, Namibia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Madagascar and Mauritius.  He is currently adjunct professor at The Jackie McLean Institute of Jazz, Hartt School, University of Hartford, and Artist in Residence for the Youth Jazz Orchestra at the Artists Collective.

Thanks to the generous support of The Edward C. & Ann T. Roberts Foundation, the Artists Collective is pleased to present Rene’ McLean “Ancestral Calling, Music of the Spirit,” with Steve Davis, trombone, Hubert Eaves, piano, Nat Reeves, bass, Carl Allen, drums and Neil Clarke, African percussion.

Call (860) 527-3205 for tickets and more information.



Artists Collective First Annual Golf Tournament

Keney Golf Course

Saturday, May 26
Tee Time: 1:00 p.m.
Awards Dinner: 6:00 p.m.

The Artists Collective presents its first annual fundraising golf tournament at the historic Keney Park Golf Course on Saturday, May 26, Tee Time 1:00 p.m. The Tournament will be  followed by an awards dinner with entertainment by The Collective Expression Jazz Ensemble. 

For sponsorship and golf team information call (860) 527-3205.



Evelyn Preston Memorial Trust Fund

Jazzmeia Horn

Saturday, September 29
8:00 p.m.
Free Community Concert

Winner of the 2015 Thelonius Monk International Vocal Jazz Competition and 2013 Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition, Jazzmeia Horn has a name that speaks for itself capturing her very essence. Hailing from Dallas, Texas Jazzmeia has already earned a reputation in New York as a “Rising Star.” With the ambition to pursue a solo career, Jazzmeia graced the New York scene in 2009 and earned her degree at The New School for Jazz and contemporary Music . Shortly after, she began to perform as a sideman with musicians Winard Harper, Junior Mance, Billy Harper, Lincoln Center Alumni Vincent Gardner, Delfeayo Marsalis, Mike LeDonne, Peter Bernstein, Johnny O’Neal, Vincent Herring, Kirk Lightsey, Frank Wess, and Ellis Marsalis.

Jazzmeia then began to appear at most of New York City’s major music venues including the Blue Note, Dizzy’s Jazz Club Coca Cola, The Apollo, Minton’s and Small’s Jazz Club to name a few. Today she is performing nationally and internationally. Her accolades include Downbeat  Best Vocal Jazz Soloist Winner, and The Betty Carter Jazz Ahead Program at The Kennedy Center­, Washington.  Ms. Horn is currently a teaching artist in The NJPAC Well’s Fargo­Jazz for Teens Program and Jazz In The Schools Program in Newark, New Jersey.


Note: Advance ticket prices are honored until the day of the performance, excluding Sunday, until 2:00 p.m.

Click here for information about previous Master Music
and Dance Performances, along with artist comments