NEA to Honor Jazz Masters Carrington, Heath, Threadgill and Shaap


​Terri Lyne Carrington, Albert “Tootie” Heath, Henry Threadgill and Phil Schaap will be honored April 22 by the NEA.

(Photo: Delphine Diallo (Carrington), Ghylian Bell & Michael Watts (Heath), Nhumi Threadgill (Threadgill), courtesy Jazz at Lincoln Center (Schaap))

The National Endowment for the Arts, in collaboration with SFJAZZ, will present a virtual tribute concert to honor the 2021 class of NEA Jazz Masters: Terri Lyne Carrington, Albert “Tootie” Heath, Henry Threadgill and broadcaster Phil Schaap.

The concert will take place online Thursday, April 22, at 8 p.m. EDT/5 p.m. PDT. The event will be hosted by 2017 NEA Jazz Master Dee Dee Bridgewater and actor Delroy Lindo with recorded performances and tributes from a variety of acclaimed jazz musicians. The concert is free and available to watch online and via radio broadcast.

Joining the Jazz Masters with opening comments will be Douglas Emhoff, second gentleman of the United States, discussing his personal connections to jazz and the art form’s connections to our nation.

Miguel Zenón will serve as musical director for the concert, which will include performances by NEA Jazz Masters Wynton and Jason Marsalis and Dianne Reeves, as well as Obed Calvaire, Avishai Cohen, Roman Filiu, Vince Giordano, Christopher Hoffman, Joe Lovano, Pedrito Martinez, Dan Nimmer, Linda May Han Oh, Danilo Pérez, David Virelles, Lizz Wright and the SFJAZZ High School All Stars.

NEA Jazz Masters Herbie Hancock, Charles Lloyd and Wayne Shorter will offer video testimonials with more tributes from Jon Faddis, Michelle Kinney, Joe Lovano, Jason Moran and James Mtume.

“As part of our efforts to give all Americans access to the arts, we are proud to partner with SFJAZZ on this virtual concert,” said Ann Eilers, NEA acting chairman. “It is an opportunity for audiences around the world to tune in and explore the honorees’ many contributions to jazz while also experiencing an evening of performances by an incredible line-up of jazz musicians.”

“It is an honor to again partner with the NEA to celebrate these Jazz Masters,” said Randall Kline, SFJAZZ founder and executive artistic director. “We are looking forward to all of these artists and our global communities coming together to honor these legendary jazz masters for their profound contributions to our world.”

The concert will be webcast online at and, as well as a variety of other jazz-related websites.

Immediately after the concert there will be a Meet the Jazz Masters discussion with the 2021 honorees, hosted by SFJAZZ. DB