Terence Blanchard, celebrated jazz trumpeter and film composer, shared about his life, career and creative process to a sold-out crowd on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day 2023. As part of a two-day event hosted by UC San Diego, Blanchard was interviewed by Professor Emeritus of Music Cecil Lytle at UC San Diego Park & Market as part of the Helen Edison Lecture Series.
In a recent ‘Music Notebook’ piece for the San Diego Union Tribune, George Vargas described the five-time Grammy-award winner and two-time Oscar nominee by writing, “Terence Blanchard does so many things so exceptionally well that it can be difficult to pinpoint this protean trumpeter, band leader, film scorer and groundbreaking opera composer’s greatest artistic strength.”
Throughout his 40-year career, Blanchard has composed more than 40 film scores and performed in more than 50. He is a frequent collaborator with director Spike Lee, and has been nominated for two Academy Awards for his work on Lee’s films, including 2018’s “BlacKkKlansman” and 2020’s “Da 5 Bloods.” Other film credits include performances in “The Princess & the Frog” and scores for “The Woman King” and “Malcolm X.” He has won five Grammy Awards from 16 nominations for his jazz performance work. Currently, Blanchard is the Endowed Chair of Jazz Studies at University of California, Los Angeles.
Andrew Waltz, Director of Arts Management, UC San Diego Division of Extended Studies shared, “The mission of Park & Market is to bring people, performances and ideas together in a uniquely accessible space. We were thrilled to join our community in marking MLK Day by inviting San Diegans to hear from Terence Blanchard. It was striking to see our Guggenheim Theatre filled with members of our community listening to this living legend, and it drove home why Park & Market is such a wonderful addition to downtown San Diego.”
The following day, January 17, Blanchard performed with E-Collective and Turtle Island Quartet at Price Center East Ballroom on UC San Diego’s main campus in La Jolla in an evening produced by ArtPower at UC San Diego. The performance included music from their latest album Absence, an homage to legendary composer and saxophonist Wayne Shorter, featuring pieces written by Shorter as well as original compositions.
Blanchard’s visit to Park & Market was sponsored by the Helen Edison Lecture Series. This ongoing program facilitated by UCSD Extension has presented free public lectures since 1985 on issues that advance humanitarian purposes and objectives. Learn more about the series and watch recordings of past conversations online.
The Guggenheim Theatre which hosted the event with Blanchard is just one of the many spaces that make up the 66,000-square-foot, mixed-use building at the intersection of Park and Market in San Diego. At the UCSD downtown location, the public can participate in a wide array of programs to learn from and work alongside others, including academic programs, trainings, art installations and cultural events. Learn more and tour spaces digitally at parkandmarket.ucsd.edu.