Jack Broza is a New York City artist whose music reflects his wide range of influences. Trained as a jazz guitarist, all his music is rooted in improvisation, but his interest and studies also include New Music composition, Brazilian classical and popular styles, and folk. Jazz continues to be central to Jack's work but he has broadened his horizons in recent years, composing through-composed concert works, scoring films, and developing repertoire as a classical guitarist.
Hailing from New York City, Jack Broza (born Jack Lawrence) comes from a family of musicians. His father, Jamie Lawrence, and grandfather, Elliot Lawrence, are both Emmy-Award winners with long lists of varied musical accomplishments. Elliot was a virtuoso pianist and bandleader who had an incredibly successful big-band until he made it big as a music director, conductor and composer; Jamie is an active pianist, producer, composer, and arranger in New York. Jack goes by Broza, the original family surname, but continues to be mentored by these two musical geniuses.
Growing up, Jack played jazz as much has he could, performing in and out of school and spending summers studying at colleges such as Berklee College of Music and NYU. He currently is a Junior studying music at Yale, where his musical exploits have split into different directions. Because of Yale's lack of formal jazz program, Jack dove into the world of Classical music, happily allowing himself to be indoctrinated by the study of the “Western Cannon.” But he has not let go of his other musical passions; at Yale he has help build a community for jazz on campus, working to run the Yale Undergraduate Jazz Collective and the Jazz Festival at Yale. This New York Times article from last year describes their uphill battle. Recently the group had a big success when Yale School of Music announced a new jazz initiative. Read this interview with Jack in the New Haven Register about the announcement and steps that preceded it. Jack has also worked on jazz advocacy through the National Jazz Museum in Harlem.
Jack's writing unites his musical foundations in jazz with his classical composition training. He has completed concert works for string quartet, cello ensemble, and art songs, as well as many pieces for guitar including his newest and longest work, I've Only Been Young. He also is constantly working on new contemporary jazz works as well as more experimental and mixed-media pieces such as his new eighteen minute video-art project, Leaves and Grass. Learning from his father and grandfather, Jack has a natural skill for scoring, and has composed music for three films, with more on the way. Jack is currently curating and composing music for a concert in conjunction with a new exhibition at the Yale University Art Gallery.
Jack has learned from a series of great mentors. His voice as a jazz guitarist was developed under guidance from Steve Tarshis, Paul Meyers, and legendary guitarist Jeff Mironov. He has studied classical guitar with Giacomo La Vita and composition with Katherine Balch and Guggenheim Fellowship recipient Kathryn Alexander. Jack is currently being trained by Grammy-Award winning saxophonist Wayne Escoffery, studying jazz improvisation with him through the Yale School of Music and receiving jazz combo coaching from him.
Having had access to the New York City music scene for his whole life, Jack has performed at a long list of famed venues, including Joe's Pub, Carnegie Hall, The Rose Theater at Lincoln Center, the Litchfield Jazz Festival, Flute Bar, and many more.