Jamal Moore


Jamal      R.    Moore    is    a    native    of    Baltimore    Maryland    whom     is    a    multi-­instrumentalist,    composer/performer    and    educator.      

        His     background   include   California     Institute   of   The   Arts   (M.F.A.   2012),    Berklee    College    of    Music    (B.M    2005),    Eubie    Blake    Jazz    Orchestra    (2000)    under          the        direction     of        Christopher        Calloway        Brooks        and        historical    acclaimed     Frederick     Douglass   Sr.     High   whom   notable   alumni   Thurgood    Marshall,    Cab    Calloway,    and    Ethel    Ennis    graduated    from.  

Some    notable    luminaries    Jamal    has    worked    with    are    Wadada    Leo    Smith   (2013   Pulitzer   finalist)   whom   he   studied   with   at   California   Institute   of    The     Arts,   Nicole   Mitchell,   Sabir   Mateen,   Roscoe   Mitchell,   David   Ornette    Cherry     (Organic     Roots   Nation),     Dr.     Bill   Cole   the     late     George     Duke     and Sheila    E.    

        He       is     a    long‐term       member     of     KREation     and     Conference     of     The     Birds    ensembles     directed   by   Kevin   Robinson.   A    member   of   The   Pan     African    Peoples        Arkestra     of      the      late      Horace      Tapscott,      Calvin      Gant     ensemble    directed     by     Calvin       Gant       and    Nicole       Mitchell;       and       Joyful       Noise       Band    under    the    direction    of    Luke    Stewart.    

        Jamal          currently        leads        his        own        groups,        Akebulan     Arkestra,        Napata    Ensemble,    Black    Elements    Quartet,    and    Organix    Trio.    

    “As     musicians     we    are    healers     of     humanity    and    have    a    responsibility    to  

cleanse     dis‐ease     through   positive     tones,   frequencies   and     vibrations.   Music    

is   the    nucleus     and    universal     language    of    the    oversoul,     mind,     body    and  

spirit.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Jamal    R.    Moore

Michelle Acton


Michelle Acton enjoys an active music life of many styles, including wind band, big band, chamber ensembles, and rock. Her primary job is as a member of the United States Army Band, “Pershing’s Own.” She also is a member of Great Noise Ensemble, a DC-based group that champions the performance of contemporary music. In addition to these commitments, she has performed on numerous occasions with the Washington Saxophone Quartet and the Chesapeake Orchestra and Big Band, and she has played with Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles, and others. Michelle earned a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baylor University and a Master of Music Performance from the University of North Texas. 

Nasar Abadey – Drums and Percussion


Nasar Abadey

Drummer and Composer Nasar Abadey is the founder, leader and driving force of SUPERNOVA®. They perform music from the threshold of Jazz to beyond space and time, while having an artistic license to express their compositions through traditional African rhythms, bebop, fusion, Afro-Cuban, Afro Brazilian, and free form. The band’s musical inspirations include John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Wayne Shorter, and Duke Ellington among others.  Based in Washington, DC Abadey has also built a solid reputation as a sideman with several groups, and has recorded and/or performed with many national artists throughout his career. Abadey began playing drums at age five. Drawing influences from powerhouse drummers such as Tony Williams, Max Roach, Roy Haynes, Elvin Jones, Art Blakey, and his cousin Frankie Dunlop, Nasar Abadey creates jazz music steeped in modal, free form, fusion, and avant-garde styles.

Currently Mr. Abadey is a Professor of Jazz Percussion in the Jazz Studies Department at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD

The Washington Renaissance Orchestra premiered a concert at the historic Lincoln Theatre in June, 2014 in a tribute to African American Music Month, under the artistic direction and founder Nasar Abadey; and his 11 piece SUPERNOVA Chamber Orchestra was invited by Jason Moran to the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage to perform for International Jazz Appreciation Day, in April 2014. In 2013 Mr. Abadey was honored by the Strathmore Mansion Artist in Resident (AIR) to mentor vocalist, Integrity Reeves, and drummer, Isabelle DeLeon.  Previously selected honors and awards are the Community Foundation for the National Capital Region, Creative Communities Initiative Grant Award; the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities for Merit and Artistic Performance; the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Artist Award, for performance, concerts and lectures in Providence, Rhode Island, Boston, Massachusetts, and Washington, DC; the Creative Artist Performance Service (CAPS) Award, for Composition, New York State; and the Prince Georges Arts Council Grant Award for Jazz Workshops in the Maryland Public School sector; GATEWAY CDC for a percussion ensemble;  and the Honda Odyssey Project. He has served as Music Panelist for DC Commission on the Arts; National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), and the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, respectively. He is currently a Board Member of the Washington DC Area Lawyers for the Arts, (WALA); selected by Washington City Paper, Art Desk ‘ DC’s Best Drummer in Jazz 2011; and in Capital Bop-Complete DC Jazz Guide was selected as one of five (5) Top CD’s in 2010.

SUPERNOVA’s® debut CD, Mirage was released on the Amosaya Records  and his sophomore CD Diamond In The Rough was released on DPC Records in 2011. Most recently SUPERNOVA® was selected by the US State Department and the Lincoln Center as Ambassadors to tour with the American Music Abroad Rhythm Road. This one month tour took them to five (5) countries in East Africa; Rwanda, Uganda, Ethiopia, Zambia, and Mozambique. Abadey has performed with many of the greats in the jazz world. His credits include Amiri Baraka, Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Rouse, Gary Bartz, David Sanchez, Cyrus Chestnut, Gregory Porter, Sonny Fortune, Ella Fitzgerald, Eartha Kitt, Kenny Kirkland, Gary Thomas, Stanley Turrentine, Sun Ra, Frank Morgan, Bobby Hutcherson, Pharaoh Sanders, Malachi Thompson and many others. Additionally, he has appeared in various festivals including, San Remo (Italy), Montreal (Canada), Cap City (DC), Virgin Island (Caribbean), JVC (NYC), Morocco (Africa), Chicago Jazz Festival, Iowa City Jazz Festival, D.C. Loft Jazz Festival, Atlanta Jazz Festival, Mellon Bank Jazz Festival, (Philadelphia), The East Coast Jazz Festival, the Free World Jazz Festival (DC), International Children’s Festival (Seattle), Guatemala City Jazz Festival, Duke Ellington Festival, DC Jazz Festival, Mid Atlantic Jazz Festival among others.

Charmaine Michelle

char_promo2 (1)

During her 20s, trumpeter Charmaine Michelle took a break from the music world to build her family. In 2008, she rededicated herself to pursuing a music career and began playing at local venues in the Baltimore/DC corridor. With help of friends and mentors, in 2010 she participated in Peabody Conservatory’s Jazz Studies Program headed by legendary saxophonist Gary Thomas. During her matriculation at Peabody, Ms. Michelle was the recipient of the Noble Levi Jolley Sr. Jazz Scholarship and studied under trumpeter-Joe Burgstaller (formerly of the Canadian Brass).
Charmaine Michelle has performed with the Peabody Brass Ensemble, Jazz Orchestra and Jazz Combo, Alex Norris, Steve Wilson, classical pianist Kyungwha Chu, Musicians of Mercy, St. Thomas Episcopal Brass Quintet, Sudanese Rocker mOsno, folk artist and activist Paulo Greogry, spoken word artist Aquil Mizan, Ama Chandra, Marc Evans, Adrian Blu, Dunbar Alumni Big Band, The Dale Acorn Big Band, KREation, Artists against War, and The Ernie Williams Project.

Miki Yamanaka



Miki Yamanaka is a pianist, organist, and composer from Japan. She started playing the piano at the age of 5, and then became interested in Jazz when she started playing in the junior high school big band. She moved to NY to study English and music in 2012. She has studied piano and music theory with Jason Lindner, Jeb Patton, David Berkman. She has performed at Smalls Jazz Club, Mezzrow, Fat Cat, Showman’s, Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola, and other venues. She is the current pianist for the Philip Harper Quintet.

Cyndy Elliott


A life-long resident of the Washington DC area, Cyndy Elliott currently works as a freelance bassist, performing many different styles of music in big bands, small combos, orchestras, and chamber ensembles, and is the co-leader of Swingtopia, a jazz octet.  She has performed at many of the major venues in DC, including the Atlas Theatre, Bethesda Blues and Jazz, Blues Alley, Bohemian Caverns, Twins Jazz, and the Terrace Theatre, Millennium Stage, and Concert Hall at the Kennedy Center.

Cyndy has had the honor of working with several renowned musicians from the big band era, including Tex Beneke, Ray Anthony, and Maxine Andrews, and two of the original Mills Brothers, in addition to doing short tours with current versions of the Artie Shaw, Harry James, Jimmy Dorsey, Sammy Kaye, and Les Brown orchestras.  Locally she has enjoyed working off and on for many years with the Tom Cunningham Orchestra and the Hank Levy Legacy Band, among many others.

Cyndy spent a number of years “on the road” touring with the big band show “In the Mood” and the Broadway musical “Meet Me in Saint Louis.”  She did residencies in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts playing bass and piano with the all-women “Swingtime Canteen” show, in addition to being a frequent sub during its off-Broadway run.  Cruise ship work took her to the Caribbean, Central America, and all over Europe.  She toured Australia and New Zealand with a jazz trombone ensemble and performed in nine cities throughout China with the Park Avenue Chamber Symphony.  She is looking forward to subbing with the national tour of “Sister Act” for a few weeks next year.

Cyndy earned a Master’s degree in Jazz Studies from the University of Maryland in 2009.  As a graduate assistant she directed a number of ensembles and taught beginning jazz theory and improvisation.

Prior to turning her attention to bass playing, Cyndy received a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance and Pedagogy from Converse College and had a 25 year career as a piano teacher and adjudicator with many award-winning students at the state and local levels and earned permanent certification in piano teaching from MTNA.  In addition, she taught theory, ear training, piano, and voice in pre-college programs at Converse College, American University, and Montgomery College.