In collaboration with Charleston Jazz Academy, Spoleto Festival USA presents two masterclasses with Wells Fargo Jazz series musicians. Chris Potter (Lowcountry: South Carolina Music in the Gullah Tradition) and Pedrito Martinez (Echoes of Africa) will share insight and skills to take participants’ jazz journey to the next level. Both programs are free and open to the public, and will take place at Charleston Jazz Academy at 3005 W Montague Ave. 

Masterclass with Chris Potter  
Monday, June 3 @ 10am
Born in Chicago, saxophonist Chris Potter’s family moved to Columbia, South Carolina when he was 3 years old. There, he played guitar and piano before taking up the alto saxophone, working his first professional gig at 13. Potter moved to New York at 18 to study at the New School and the Manhattan School of Music, and to immerse himself in the city’s jazz scene. In the decades since, he’s recorded 15 albums as a leader and played on more than 100 others, in contexts that span genres, from Herbie Hancock’s jazz to Steely Dan’s Grammy-winning Two Against Nature. A leading light of his generation, DownBeat magazine called him “one of the most studied (and copied) saxophonists on the planet.”

Masterclass with Pedrito Martinez 
Friday, June 7 @ 11am 
Havana, Cuba native Pedrito Martinez began his musical career with a foundation in the rumba and Afro-Cuban Yoruba traditions. He has recorded or performed with Paul Simon, Wynton Marsalis, Paquito D’Rivera, Bruce Springsteen, Ruben Blades, Eddie Palmieri, Dave Matthews, and Sting, among others. He was a founding member of the band Yerba Buena and has recorded four solo albums, the first being nominated for a Grammy and was named one of NPR’s Favorite Albums of 2013. In 2019, Martinez and pianist Alfredo Rodriguez released a duo album called Duologue to critical acclaim. He was named, for the seventh time in nine years, Jazz Percussionist of the Year by the Jazz Journalists Association.