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UVI Music Department Offers Improvisation Workshops

UVI music department offers free jazz improvisation workshops.

The University of the Virgin Islands Music Department will launch a series of interactive workshops in October and November to help musicians improve their jazz improvisation skills.

The Music-in-Motion workshops feature prominent local musicians who share their approach to improvisation – applicable to all chromatic instruments and voice – and offer technical exercises that will assist in the quest to develop and improve improvisation techniques.        

Photo descriptionAlbert Lockhart, Jr.  and    Marsvyn O. David

The workshops are free and open to musicians from high schools, UVI, and adults in the community. Each workshop is interactive and participants are urged to bring their instruments. The workshops take place in the UVI music building, choir room.

At 6 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 16, saxophonist and composer Alfred “Chubby” Lockhart, Jr. will lead the workshop. Lockhart has a wealth of performing experience abroad and locally. 

While living in New York in 1987 he was a studio musician for Charlie’s Recording Studio and Platinum Recording studios, recording with Lord Nelson, Denyse Plummer, Gypsie, Blue Boy and many more artists. He has arranged music for The Mighty Sparrow, Lord Blakie, King Wellington, Shadow, Chalkdust and King Short Shirt. Additionally, Lockhart also performed with The Spinners, The Temptations, Cab Callaway, George Kirby, and Randy Brecker.

At home, Lockhart is known as a stalwart supporter of Carnival music events, serving as a member of the VI Carnival Committee Calypso Tent, and local calypso competition back-up bands for more than 30 years. Over the years Lockhart groomed more than 40 junior calypsonians for competitions and recordings. 

The workshop series continues 6 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 13, with a session on improvisation led by bassist and composer/arranger Marsvyn O. David and Friends.   

David has had four of his compositions recorded by the Howard University Jazz Ensemble. He was the musical director for country and western singer Brenda Cole, the 1988 country singer of the year for Southern California. He also produced an album for the Atlanta-based salsa band Orquesta Taboga.

David, who resides on St. Croix, orchestrated and produced the music for the movie “Fires Within” while living in Los Angeles, from which one of the arrangements was nominated for a music award.  In 1997, he was musical director for Sony Corporation’s “Sony Gala.”

For more information contact UVI Professor of Music Lorna Young-Wright at or (340) 693-1191.