Impromptu: Master Class & Shed Experience

Musician Master Class & Shed Experience at Brandon House Cultural & Performing Arts Center

Brandon House introduces a new series, Impromptu, designed to cultivate an experience where Little Rock musicians are able to connect with other professionals who come from different regions of the country, learn from these experts, and participate in shedding experiences that breeds unity, comradery, and improvement. 

Our first Impromptu guest is Dr. Michael Decuir, Director of University Bands from Clark Atlanta University. He will teach a master class to a group of Little Rock novice band students on Tuesday, July 12, 2022 starting at 12:30pm.  The Master Class will be held at Brandon House’s event center, 12120 Colonel Glenn Road, Suite 1000, Little Rock, AR. Under the direction of Naocea Evans, Brandon House’s Talent Management Coordinator, our very own Sound Off Drum Line will perform for Dr. Decuir.  Band students from local schools are invited to attend the master class and are asked to bring their instruments for an impromptu performance with Dr. Decuir.  The Master Class event is free and lunch will be provided. Dr. Decuir will explore great percussion sections from UAPB and players like Jonathan Moffett - Michael Jackson's drummer as well as talk to the band students about why the percussion section is so important to a good band and what the percussion section means to our culture (West African).

Tuesday’s Master Class will be followed by an Impromptu Spontaneous Shed Experience with local Little Rock musicians where local musicians will come together and share their musical and artistic talents with each other on Wednesday evening, July 13 from 7 to 10p.m. in Brandon House’s Brilliant Art Xposed (BAX) Theater.  This event is free and refreshments will be served.   The purpose of Brandon House’s Impromptu Shed is to present an expert in the field of music who can provide a deeper understanding of their craft, as well as to expose, educate and nurture upcoming artists. 

About Dr. Michael Decuir

Born and raised in New Orleans, LA, Dr. Decuir was influenced by the great Louis Armstrong, an American jazz trumpeter, composer and singer to become the musician and teacher that he is today.  Dr. Decuir teaches Woodwind Studies, Marching and Symphonic Bands, Conducting, Jazz History, and the History of African American Music. His coming of age in his hometown of New Orleans serves as one of the key factors that inspired him to publish a book in 2022 titled “Louis Armstrong, Blues Music, and the Artistic, Philosophical, and Political Debate During the Harlem Renaissance.” He has shared his research on Armstrong at various conferences, and often serves as the guest clinician for many honors and marching band camps. In his book, Dr. Michael Decuir explores the interrelationship of the literary, visual, and performing arts; politics; and opposing philosophies during the Harlem Renaissance. His research details the related cultural behaviors and their manifestations during the Harlem Renaissance. Specifically, Decuir discusses blues music’s importation to New Orleans and the incorporation of the West African stratified rhythmic and improvisational approach to its performance. Decuir has served in the field of Music Education for the past thirty-one years and has earned a reputation for successfully developing secondary and collegiate band programs. He earned a BA in Music Education from Southern University at New Orleans, MA in Music, from The University of California, Berkeley, and a Doctor of Arts in Humanities from Clark Atlanta University. He is also a performing blues, jazz, and classical artist. His primary instruments are alto and tenor saxophones, clarinet, and flute. He enjoys the reputation as a caring teacher concerned with student achievement and successful educational experiences.