Jazz Icon Visits Williston | VideoEvan Kruegel | 4/2/2012
"Any time we can bring in a guest artist its about education and its about these students getting to work with a professional, somebody who does this for a living day to day, and whose basically in the trenches and doing what these kids would love to do someday in the future so having that interaction between a professional musician and a student is absolutely outstanding," said director Eric Rooke.
Now the Music Coordinator for Long Island University, Cooper holds numerous master classes and clinics across the country each year.
"The interaction with the students and talking about this music that I love so much, jazz, and when students are so interested its great to see them working on material out of the classic jazz library, and its wonderful to see them progress and to become really turned on by the art form," said Cooper.
Rooke knows the difficulties of bringing musical talent to Williston, so he relishes the opportunity to have a professional work with his students.
"Master classes are the key to music, because any time you can sit in a room and soak up more and more music and soak up ideas, and thoughts, and any experience that these people have, you become a better musician, a better student, and in general I think you become a better person, because your learning and continuing your education and you`re always striving to be better."
After performing virtually all of her adult life, Cooper enjoys the opportunity to hold clinics like this one.
"Performing is teaching in a way, and teaching is performing, there almost inseparable at this point, because teaching is about communication, performing is about communication."
Rooke plans to continue the trend of bringing in guest artists. After the success of her first trip to Williston, don`t be surprised to see Gloria Cooper return to the area.