Now available on iTunes! Click here! With Al Jarreau at the Clef Club, Philadelphia Learning from the greatest Al Jarreau during our vocal department residency at the Clef Club Our Choir national and international accomplishments through my years in Camden
Italy, Puerto Rico, Prague, Nashville, New Orleans, New York, Orlando, Florida, Virginia... other travels, Poland, West Africa 2008 Clifford Brown Jazz Festival; Main stage. Featuring women in music! Helen Sung (Jazz Pianist) and me at the 2008 Clifford Brown Jazz Festival At my performance in the 2008 Clifford Brown Jazz Festival with Rene Ginett singer (Left) With singer and master teacher; Bobby McFerrin at Omega Institute 2012 Circle Songs workshop in Rhinebeck, NY With my incredible master teachers; Rhiannon and Judy at 2012 Omega Institute Karen Rodriguez - singer, Lalo Rodriguez - singer and me at the 2010 Wilmington, Delaware Hispanic Fest  Donna Bostock, Myself and the greatest Compay Segundo at the Mann Music Center At Jill Scott's Blues Baby fundraising with Frankie Negron, some of our former students and me Dave Valentin, Karen Rodriguez, Suzzette Ortiz With Nestor Torres when I opened up for him with With Jimmy Bosh in New York Jill Scott in my vocal classroom and some of my students (2006) Ricky Gonzales and I after my performance in La Feria del Barrio in Philadelphia In front of Titicaca Lake during our concert tour to La Paz Jazz Festival in Bolivia
From let to right: Mark Beecher, Lynn Riley, myself, Donna, Rubin Edwards and Crystal Torre With the children of the village of Adarkwa in Suhum, West Ghana during our concert choir tour 2006 My new friend in the village of Adarkwa in Suhum, West Ghana 2006 At World Café Live, Philadelphia with Ellas y Amigos With one of my piano mentors Sumi Tonooka after our John Blake's concert at the Baby Grand in Wilmington Delaware Orquesta La Paz; Nominated for 4 Latin Grammys! Wilmington Latin Jazz Festival with Karen Rodriguez Latin Jazz Ensemble 2007 State Teacher of the Year by Wal-Mart Dave Valentine's piano player; Bill O'Conor Rene Ginett (singer) and I 2003 Gold Cup choral completion in Verona, Italy Promoting my CD at Sonido Diferente, Centro Musical in Philadelphia, Jesse Bermudez, Consejal Maria Quinonez... Karen Rodriguez Latin Jazz Ensemble, with Dennis Guevarra - Keyboards, Juan Medina - bass, Juan Castellanos - timbales With the Karen Rodriguez Jazz Ensemble;Mike Boone- bass, Karen Rodriguez- singer and leader, Noel Cintron- bongos, myself - piano, Hector Rosado Congas and Bill Murray - sax Sonia Sanchez and I after our performance at PAFA March 2013 Women Month Former Mayor Faison, Karen Rodriguez . singer and me! At the 2010 Philadanco awards honoring Mayor Faison, Ms. Sydney King and myself for our contribution in the arts in Philadelphia, Delawre and New Jersey. Raye Jones, Executive Director of the Christina Cultural Arts Center in Wilmington, Delaware nominated me for the Philadelphia Cultural Committe award

Bio

SuzetteSuzzette Ortiz, a passionate pianist, composer, and educator, has been serving her communities with the gift of music form her humble beginnings in Bayamon, Puerto Rico, to her many recent successes as a Pennsauken, New Jersey native.

As a performer throughout the tri-state area, Suzzette has performed in such venues as The Kimmel Center, The Mann Music Center, Wilmington Delaware, Baby Grand, Zanzibar Blue Jazz Club, Villanova Performing Arts Center, La Feria del Barrio, the Bethlehem P.R Festival, The Wayne Jazz Festival (all Philadelphia/ PA area venues), Clifford Brown Festival, the Chicken Bone Beach Jazz Festival (in Atlantic City,NJ), and El Flamingo Night club in Manhattan, NYC. She has studied piano with Cuban musicians withe like of Cesar “Pupi” Pedroso (of the world famous Cuban group, Los Van Van) and Elio Villafranca, Orlando Fiol, Sumi Tonooka,and the late Philadelphia jazz phenom, Jimmy Amadie. Suzzette has shared the stage with artists such as, Tito Puente, Nestor Torres, Eddie Palmieri, the Spanish Harlem Orchestra, Compay Segundo (of the Cuban based Buena Vista Social Club), Brenda K. Starr and Hilton Ruiz. Her international performance credits include the International FestiJazz of La Paz, Bolivia, Venezuela, the Jazz Festival in Cuba, venues such as the Kimmel Center, Zanzibar Blue, Chicken Bone Beach festival in Atlantic City, Ausbury Park Jazz Festival. She was featured at the Wilmington’s Clifford Brown Jazz Main Stage as part of women in music.

A true advocate of education Ms. Ortiz earned her bachelor degree in piano performance at El Conservatorio de Musica de Puerto Rico, as well as a master degree in education and composition at Temple University of Philadelphia, PA. Since the completion of her collegiate studies, Suzzette has continually sought out workshops and learning opportunities in her constant quest to grow as a musician and educator. These efforts have resulted in two trips to study Latin piano, rhythm and composition in Cuba, many national and international choral workshops, a workshop on vocal improvisation with master, Bobby McFerrin and his Voicestra, (Rhiannon, Judy Vinar, Joey Blake, Christiane Karam and David Worm), as well as post graduate credits in choral conducting at Philadelphia’s University of the Arts, and New York City’s Julliard School of Music.

Ortiz has also recorded with many local music groups and many of her compositions have been recorded by local and international ensembles. She recorded with Orquesta La Paz from Philadelphia. Their album, “Déjà Vu” was nominated for 4 Latin Grammys.

Suzzette’s latest CD is an all original Latin Jazz CD entitled “Renacer,” (Re-birth). Her music not only portrays Latin Jazz, but world music as well.  It is a reflection of the people she has encountered and the places that she has visited.

Along with the latest accomplishments, Suzzette Ortiz’s dedication as an educator has brought great prestige to herself as well as her students. She began her career in education with the highly acclaimed, San Juan Children’s Choir, continuing on religious, cultural, ) related choirs in the Philadelphia area to eventually find her home as the vocal director of the Camden, New Jersey’s High School for the Creative Arts High School; now Creative Arts Morgan Village Academy in which she recently retired after 27 years of service. Despite many obstacles, Ms. Ortiz created history for Camden when she facilitated both national and international trips to choral competitions where the students won multiple awards  and recognition including 3 gold cups in Italy, Silver in Prague, special recognition in Poland, Ghana, Africa as well winning gold in Nashville, Tennessee, New Orleans, Puerto Rico, Orlando, Florida, Virginia and New York.

 

Her work as a teacher has been recognized multiple times receiving various awards including Teacher of the Year on four occasions and one was the “Wal-Mart’s State Teacher of the Year” Suzzette Ortiz has received countless awards, commendations, and medals from Camden’s City Council, Camden’s Board of Education, the New Jersey State Senate, the Martin Luther King Congressional Medal.Her greatest reward however is spreading the passion of music not only to those  who listen to her music but  also her students. One of her special attributes is teaching the value of making a difference. She recently received great ovation by singer Al Jarreau for her participation with her vocal students at a master class/ residency sponsored by the Mann Music Center.

Ortiz is currently writing her first book of memoirs which documents her thirty-two years of teaching music from the perspective of a performer who evolved into an educator. The book is to serve as a guide for new teachers who plan to teach in urban schools. It will include personal anecdotes, teaching strategies, tips for working within the school system, how to develop relationships with parents and students, and how she traveled the world with her students.  Suzzette retired from the Camden city schools after 27 amazing teaching years, to pursue new music endeavors.

She is currently the new Artistic Director at AMLA music school where she strives to continue to create social change through music. She is not only committed to AMLA’s mission statement of promoting and developing understanding of Latin music and its roots but also help develop awareness and appreciation for other cultures.

Overcoming many social and cultural obstacles to share her message of hope and love though music, Suzzette Ortiz is truly making a difference

 

Events

  • Sat
    07
    Oct
    2017
    7:30 pmBlue Hair Studio 2550 Huntingdon Pike, Huntingdon Valley, PA 19006

    Live music, food, drinks Musicians:Suzzette Ortiz piano Rene Ginet vocals Lynn Riley sax and flute Rubin Edwards bass Tony Miceli vibes Blane Bostock guitar Donna Bostock percussion Paula Breslin drums

  • Fri
    13
    Oct
    2017
    6:00 - 8:00 PMWoodmere art museum 9201 Germantown Ave. Philadelphia PA

    Jean Lenke - vocals, Ana Gonzalez - Bass Karen Smith - percussion, Lynn Riley sax, Suzzette Ortiz Piano. Celebrating women who tell stories and change hearts through art, music and song

  • Sun
    15
    Oct
    2017
    8:30 amMoorestown , New Jersey

    Performing in a duo setting with singer Rene Ginett

     

     

  • Sun
    15
    Oct
    2017
    12:00 pmASPIRA Educational Campus 6301 North 2nd Street Philadelphia, PA 19120

    Coral Hispana de Philadelphia under the direction of Damaris Thillet will present concert where 100% will go to Puerto Rico. Donation 20.00 dollars

Cumbanchero by Rafael Hernandez

Suzette Ortiz rehearsing with the Karen Rodriguez's Latin Jazz Ensemble. Percussion arrangement by Pedro Zayas and Mariano Medina. Musical arrangement by Suzzette Ortiz

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