Able Artists Series: Inclusive Music Making
Juno award-winning composer-percussionist Jesse Stewart joined the Able Artist series to introduce inclusive music-making technologies to the local community.
In a morning session, Stewart led our artists with disabilities through a collaborative music-making session. Then, we invited community music leaders and educators, students, musicians, advocates, and social service professionals in the afternoon. They learned more about Stewart’s inclusive music-making process, discovered cutting-edge music technologies including the “reactable” (an electronic musical instrument with a tangible user interface on an illuminated tabletop), and briefly experienced some of the results of the collaboration with our artists.
H’art Centre hosts the Able Artists series to provide professional development workshops led by visiting professional artists with disabilities and leaders in the inclusive arts movement to raise awareness of the value of the arts to those with disabilities.
Able Artist Series is hosted by H’art Centre and supported by the City of Kingston and Community Foundation of Kingston and Area.
More about Jesse Stewart
Jesse Stewart is an award-winning percussionist, composer, improviser, artist, instrument builder, educator, and writer. A dynamic and inventive performer, Stewart has a remarkable ability to coax unexpected—even magical—sounds out of virtually any resonating object or material. He has performed with many internationally acclaimed musicians including George Lewis, Roswell Rudd, Bill Dixon, William Parker, Evan Parker, Joe Mcphee, Michael Snow, and many others. He is currently a member of the David Mott Quintet and Tallboys, a trio featuring virtuoso musicians Kevin Breit on guitar and Matt Brubeck on cello. He also leads his own groups and performs regularly as a soloist at festivals across the country and has made numerous compact disc recordings.
After majoring in both visual art and in music as an undergraduate student at the University of Guelph, he went on to complete two Master of Arts degrees concurrently at York University in Toronto: one in ethnomusicology and another in music composition. His composition teachers included James Tenney and David Mott. In 2008, Stewart completed doctoral-level studies at the University of Guelph where he was the first recipient of the Brock Doctoral Scholarship, the university’s most prestigious graduate award. He now teaches music composition at Carleton University in Ottawa.
His playing has been described as “truly exciting” (Musicworks 76), “exceptional” (Cadence Oct. 2002) and “phenomenal” (Cadence Nov. 1999). In a 2002 review, Texas-based music critic Frank Rubolino described him as “…one of the finest young drummers and percussionists on the scene today” (One Final Note Summer/Fall 2002).