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Sunday Afternoon @ YSA
w/ The Roosevelt Middle School All Stars Plus

• at Youth Spirit Artworks Berkeley  -

Free and Fun !

MAP • EVEntbrite Free Tickets


Led by the inimitable Randy Porter, music director, composer, musician and educator – with guest artists-teachers  Dan Plonsey and Christopher Lowell Clarke – the band featured  Roosevelt musicians performing an eclectic range of contemporary tunes, jazz standards – and an original Dan Plonsey composition – in a convivial outdoor setting.

A reception for the  band, team and audience followed in the YSA Gallery, currently showing work by its memebers.

The event  was free, with donations invited to support Youth Spirit Artworks, the Roosevelt Music Program, OUSD Summer Music Camp and Alternating Currents. Let us know if you'd like to contribute to any of the participating  organizations. 

We were delighted to be collaborating with the incomparable YSA Staff and the OUSD Roosevelt Middle School Program on this event.  on this project

Interested in being a Blue Ribbon Sponsor for future Alternating Currents shows?   Contact us!

RANDY PORTER, Musical Director

Randy Porter has been creating music as a multi-instrumentalist, composer, and improviser for a long time.  He has written for a variety of ensembles from solo to symphony orchestras. He has collaborated with many musicians over the years to make music with his students including Terry Riley, The Sun Ra Arkestra, Kronos, Quartet, Cypress Quartet, Vinny Golia Large Ensemble, Vijay Iyer, Sean Jones, Dan Plonsey, Julian Lage, and many more.

Porter has been a mainstay at the annual Summer Solstice Chapel of the Chimes Garden of Memory concert  in Oakland performing his compositions on a variety of prepared instruments.

He is also the Lead Teacher of the Oakland Unified School District's free Jazz Summer Camp.

MORE: KRON TV Aug 22, 2017  story by Vince Cestone: Teacher of the Week: Oakland music teacher and composer Randy Porter.”

Roosevelt Music Program

The Roosevelt Music Program aims to build character through the learning, playing and performing of music, individually and together as a group. We will learn music theory, notation, composition and arranging. Our goal is to develop musical skills, discipline and personal perception as a performer, while building an understanding of the unique and important role that every individual plays in a musical ensemble, be it Band, Orchestra, Jazz Band, Choir, or Exploring Music. To support our goals we request that students actively participate in class, fulfill their written assignments, practice their instrument at least a minimum of 130 minutes per week and attend all performances

Christopher Lowell Clarke 


Christopher Lowell Clarke began playing trumpet in the fourth grade. He attended the College Conservatory of Music, at University of Cincinnati, majoring in Jazz Studies and Studio Music Performance.  In 1992, Chris received the Fisk Middleton Young Emerging Jazz Artist Scholarship and performed at the East Coast Jazz Festival in Rockridge, MD.

Anxious to sow his professional oats, Chris left school in 1993 and worked as a musician with Carnival Cruise Lines off and on for the next four years, living in Atlanta, New York, Los Angeles and Puerto Rico. Chris moved to San Francisco in 1997 and immediately impacted the jazz scene performing regularly with heavy weights like Bishop Norman Williams, Herbie Lewis and Eddie Marshall . As a sought after trumpet players in the Bay Area, he continues to develop his professional career.

   CLarke playlist on Ac's soundCloud   

youth spirit artworks

Youth Spirit Artworks (YSA) is an interfaith “green” art jobs and job training program located in Berkeley, California which is committed to empowering homeless and low-income San Francisco Bay Area young people.

YSA was founded in 2007, as a response to the enormous employment challenges of older homeless and low-income youth, by one of the initiators of the Alameda County Homeless Youth Collaborative, who had observed first hand at the Telegraph Avenue Homeless Youth Drop-In Center the unmet needs of transition age youth for jobs and jobs training programs.

The mission of Youth Spirit Artworks is to use art jobs and jobs training to empower and transform the lives of youth, giving young people the skills, experience, and self-confidence needed to meet their full potential. MORE

dan Plonsey

Born in Cleveland, Ohio, and raised in Cleveland Heights, Dan has lived in California for 38 years, and in El Cerrito for 30.

Since 1978, Plonsey has written hundreds of works for large and small ensembles. He has received commissions from: The Jewish Music Festival (Berkeley), Real Time Opera (New Hampshire), the Bang on a Can People's Commissioning Fund (New York), Theatre of Yugen (San Francisco), New Music Works (Santa Cruz), and Alternating Currents (Right Here).

Most of Plonsey's work has been written without commission, deadline, or any significant outside influence for: Daniel Popsicle, his 10-20 person ensemble of unfixed instrumentation; New Zombies, a louder and more danceable spinoff of Popsicle; the Goggle Saxophone Quartet, of which he is a member; and ad hoc ensembles which have performed his collection of string trios, his 3-hour-long Kingdoms Diptych, and Plonsey's 4 Seasons: Baseball, Football, Hockey, and Dog Walk. For the past six years, Plonsey has been working on Concert Band 1, a massive recording project, of which 24 CDs have been released so far. It could go on indefinitely: Plonsey writes little pieces for band instruments; performs each part himself; collages the resulting pieces together, adding improvisation and studio gimmickry..


Plonsey has also been teaching math at Berkeley High for the past 18 years, and this year is also teaching music on Tuesdays at Roosevelt Middle School, in Oakland.

   Dan Plonsey Bandcamp site   


This program funded in part by 

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