Harlem jazz pianist wins a MacArthur ‘Genius’ Award

 MacArthur ‘Genius’ Awards

Harlem resident Vijay Iyer, 41, the jazz pianist and composer known for collaborations with poets wins a MacArthur ‘Genius’ Award.  He is one of 24 people who will each recieve a $625,000. stipend.

The MacArthur Fellowship is a five-year grant to individuals who show exceptional creativity in their work and the prospect for still more in the future. The fellowship is designed to provide recipients with the flexibility to pursue their creative activities in the absence of specific obligations or reporting requirements. There are no limits on age or area of activity. Individuals cannot apply for this award; they must be nominated.

His album “Holding It Down: The Veterans’ Dreams Project” is incredible blend of Jazz, poetry, heart and soul. Hear for yourself.


“I want to use the money for the greater good of the community,” said Mr. Iyer, whose latest project of note was “Holding It Down: The Veterans’ Dream Project,” an exploration of the dreams of minority war veterans. Mr. Iyer, who lives in Harlem, added: “A life in the arts is a life of service, Yo-Yo Ma once told me. That sits well with me.”

Author: HarlemGuy