Donation From Larry Bell Establishes Gilmore Festival Jazz Awards
Bell's founder Larry Bell has made another major contribution following his sale of the brewery late last year. The Larry J. Bell Jazz Awards for jazz pianists (which consists of the Larry J. Bell Jazz Artist Award and Larry J. Bell Young Jazz Artist Award) were announced some months before, but now The Gilmore has announced the person who will oversee and run these awards. They've hired Seth Abramson, who has been President and founder of Rabbit Moon Productions, Inc. a live music presentation and production company and he's also the founding Artistic Director for Jazz Standard, a well-known New York City jazz club.
"As with the internationally renowned Gilmore Artist Award for classical pianists, the Larry J. Bell Jazz Artist recipient will be chosen every four years by an anonymous committee with the pianist receiving $300,000—a $50,000 cash grant to be used at the artist’s discretion, and $250,000 disbursed over a four-year period for projects and activities that will enhance the artist’s musicianship and career." - The Gilmore.org
The first Larry J. Bell Jazz Artist is going to be presented in 2026. And the new Larry J. Bell Young Jazz Artist Award is being established to award $25,000 every two years to the most promising of the new generation of American jazz pianists age 22 and younger, beginning in 2026. This award mirrors the Gilmore Young Artist Awards for classical pianists, according to The Gilmore.
It's Abramson's job to establish the whole process for these new awards, from the nomination process to the selection of the finalists. The evaluation criteria for the awards will include the artists' career potential and musicianship in live concert performances over a two-to-three-year period. The anonymous committee will be a representation of a variety of people in the (jazz) music business.