Jazz professor earns recognition

A Pitt music professor will be recognized for his achievements in jazz education this weekend.

The Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation plans to present Nathan Davis, a professor emeritus in Pitt’s Department of Music, with its Jazz 2013 Living Legacy Award. Each year, the foundation issues the award to a living master of live jazz from the mid-Atlantic region.

“Nathan’s world-renowned talent and his steadfast and uncompromising commitment to jazz education are truly remarkable,” Jim McDonald, BNY Mellon’s managing director of global philanthropy and employee programs, said in a statement.

McDonald described Davis as “a longtime friend who has used his gifts to help thousands of students while entertaining audiences globally.”

Davis will receive the award at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., on Saturday.

Davis came to Pitt in 1969 as the director of the Jazz Studies Program.

Davis is the founder of Pitt’s annual Jazz Seminar and Concert, which will be held from Oct. 30 to Nov. 2 this year. The seminar features lectures from internationally recognized artists and a live performance.

“I wanted to bring dignity — the same dignity and respect afforded physicians, philosophers and other scholars in academia — to jazz,” Davis said in the same statement. “And that, I think, I was able to do.”