Jazz Great Nat Adderley, Jr., Will Serve as Artistic Director 

Application Deadline is November 6 

BOWIE, Md. (October 15, 2015) – FAMEFoundation for the Advancement of Music & Education invites Prince George’s County middle and high school students to apply for the inaugural 2015-2016 season of the FAME Jazz Band. Under the leadership of founding artistic director Nat Adderley, Jr., the FAME Jazz Band will provide high caliber music and academic instruction for 30 middle school and high school students. The students will perform on major stages throughout the region, receive academic and college prep tutoring during the school year, and participate in FAME’s summer music technology and instrumental programs at the University of Maryland College Park.

“The FAME Jazz Band will bring together a diverse group of talented students who will have the great fortune to learn and work with Nat Adderley, Jr., as well as other master musicians and artists in a professional and supportive setting,” said FAME Founder and Executive Director A. Toni Lewis. Adderley, scion of the famed jazz family, is an international jazz pianist and former music director, composer, and arranger for music icon Luther Vandross.

“Following intensive training with leading professional musicians, these remarkable teenagers will have the opportunity to perform on famed stages throughout the Washington metro region and tour some of the great music venues while serving as dynamic musical ambassadors for Prince George’s County,” added Lewis.

Middle and high school students living and/or attending school in Prince George’s County are eligible to apply. Home schooled students are also encouraged to apply. The application deadline is November 6.

To apply to the FAME Jazz Band:

  • Go to and complete the application, which includes an essay and two personal recommendations.
  • Applications must be received or postmarked by 11:59 p.m. on November 6.
  • Students may apply for a waiver of the $50 application fee on the basis of financial need.
  • Auditions for applicants will be held Nov. 16-21, and decisions and feedback will be provided by FAME Jazz Band Artistic Director on Nov. 23.

FAME Jazz Band Founding Artistic Director Nat Adderley, Jr., is best known for his work with Luther Vandross, whom he first met while they were both attending the Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts in New York City, the school depicted in the 1980s “Fame” television series. Serving as Vandross’ musical director from 1981 until Vandross’ death in 2003, Adderley wrote and arranged Vandross’ first top 20 pop hit, “Stop to Love,” as well as “Wait for Love” and the Grammy-nominated “Give me the Reason.” Adderley also arranged many of Vandross’ most popular records including “Superstar,” “Here and Now,” “If Only for One Night,” “Creepin,” “If This World Were Mine,” “Never Too Much,” and “Love Won’t Let Me Wait.” More recently, Adderley produced tracks on the last seven Vandross studio albums including a duet with Beyonce Knowles that appears on Beyonce’s album “Dangerously in Love” and won the Grammy in 2004 for best R&B performance by a duo or group.

Many other artists have had major successes with help from Adderley, including Kirk Whalum, Natalie Cole, Johnny Gill, Aretha Franklin and Doc Powell. More recently, Adderley has been performing in jazz clubs and festivals in Asia, Europe and California with saxophonist Tom Scott and in the New York area with other artists and with his own trio. Adderley received his B.A. from Yale University in 1978.

Adderley first became involved with FAME as a guest performer at a FAME event. After interacting with local students backstage, his involvement with FAME increased and he ultimately suggested the formation of the FAME Jazz Band. “Music is important to the overall development of a child,” said Adderley. “I’m deeply committed to doing whatever I can to give children access to music.” Adderley, who lives in New Jersey, will travel to Maryland two days a week to launch and oversee the jazz band.

For music information or questions, please contact Rudy Spruill, Program Coordinator, at 301-805-5358 or; for logistical questions contact Kris Moss at

About FAME–Foundation for the Advancement of Music & Education, Inc.

FAME–Foundation for the Advancement of Music & Education, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit whose mission is to positively impact the lives of youth through access to quality music, education, programs, and experiences. FAME has furnished school music programs with new and used instruments and also sponsors after-school, music technology and academic programs, giving students access to the finest instructors and technology in the music business and live musical theatre. The organization aims to provide equal access to the arts for youth of all socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds. Learn more at


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