Milford Graves & Jason Moran
In Conversation
Sunday, November 22, 2020
3:00 PM
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Program Info

Free with registration
All Ages

Sponsored by

Major support for Milford Graves: A Mind-Body Deal provided by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, with additional support from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and the Joseph Robert Foundation.

Presented by

Milford Graves: A Mind-Body Deal, organized and presented by Ars Nova Workshop and Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania (ICA).

On March 23, 2018, jazz luminaries Milford Graves and Jason Moran mesmerized the audience at the Big Ears Festival in Knoxville, Tennessee with their improvisational performance. It was the first collaboration between the two artists who push beyond the margins set by the artform that has defined their careers. Despite their thirty-four year age difference, they share a profound sense of respect for history and remain committed to leaving behind a legacy that is representative of their distinctive perspectives. This online discussion between Graves and Moran will be a rare opportunity to sit-in on an intimate exchange between two preeminent figures of jazz, and is a precursor to the public release of their performance which is scheduled for next year.

This program is co-presented by Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia.


Jazz pianist, composer, and performance artist Jason Moran is deeply invested in reassessing and complicating the relationship between music and language. His commission projects include the Walker Art Center, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Dia Art Foundation, the Whitney Museum of American Art, Harlem Stage, and Jazz at Lincoln Center. The scope of Moran’s music-making and partnerships with visual artists is extensive. He has collaborated with such major figures as Adrian Piper, Joan Jonas, Glenn Ligon, Stan Douglas, Adam Pendleton, Lorna Simpson, and Kara Walker.

Moran has a long-standing collaborative practice with his wife, the singer and Broadway actress Alicia Hall Moran. As named artists in the 2012 Whitney Biennial, they constructed a five-day series of live music called BLEED, which was widely considered to be a groundbreaking blend of music and performance. In 2018, Moran had his first solo museum exhibition at the Walker Art Center. He is the Artistic Director for Jazz at The Kennedy Center and currently teaches at the New England Conservatory. In 2010 he was named a MacArthur Fellow.

Cover: Jason Moran and Milford Graves performing at the Big Ears Festival in Knoxville, Tennessee, 2018. Photo by Eli Johnson.