Fighting for Women's Equality

Jazz at Lincoln Center Adopts Blind Auditions and New Selection Procedures for Jazz Orchestra

August 17, 2016 | by

Jazz at Lincoln Center Adopts Blind Auditions and
New Selection Procedures for Jazz Orchestra

Press contact: Cynthia Foster, Equal Rights Advocates, cfoster@equalrights.org, 615.944.9166

For immediate release
August 17, 2016

SAN FRANCISCO – Equal Rights Advocates, The Liu Law Firm P.C., Outten & Golden LLP, and our clients, Ellen Seeling and JazzWomen & Girls Advocates, are proud to announce that Jazz at Lincoln Center has formally adopted new selection procedures for regular and substitute members of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra.

“We are optimistic that these exciting changes, which reflect our collaborative efforts with Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, will increase opportunities for women musicians to join this iconic jazz institution,” said Ellen Seeling, jazz trumpeter and Chairperson of JazzWomen and Girls Advocates.

The new, more formalized selection procedures include blind auditions, formal job postings, and wider outreach about openings, all of which will help the Orchestra attract a broad and diverse pool of applicants. In particular, blind auditions have been widely credited with increasing the representation of women in symphony orchestras from less than 5% of all players in the 1970s, to close to 50% today.

“We applaud Jazz at Lincoln Center for making these changes to its selection process, and are hopeful they will result in a more diverse orchestra,” said Jennifer Reisch, Legal Director of Equal Rights Advocates. “This is an important and historic step towards increasing women’s representation in jazz, a field in which women instrumentalists historically have faced exclusion and marginalization.”

Jazz at Lincoln Center engaged in collaboration with JazzWomen & Girls Advocates, Equal Rights Advocates, The Liu Law Firm P.C, and Outten & Golden LLP in developing the new selection procedures.

Learn more about Equal Rights Advocates’ collaboration with JazzWomen & Girls Advocates to promote diversity in jazz here.

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Equal Rights Advocates is a national civil rights organization dedicated to protecting and expanding economic and educational access and opportunities for women and girls.

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