Thornton alum Gerald Clayton (BM ’07) was recently announced as the Artistic Director and conductor of the Monterey Jazz Festival’s Next Generation Jazz Orchestra for 2020-2022. The 50th annual Next Generation Jazz Festival, organized by the Monterey Jazz Festival, will take place April 3-5 and showcase over 1,300 middle and high school musicians.
Clayton is a GRAMMY-nominated pianist and has been involved with the Monterey Jazz Festival for many years. In 2017, he performed as the artist-in-residence at the 60th Monterey Jazz Festival alongside his father John Clayton, the festival’s first father and son artist-in-residence duo. Clayton also participated in the Next Generation Jazz Festival in 2000 and 2001 as a student of Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, when he won the festival’s soloist award.