March 10, 2015. Norwalk, Conn.— The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) today announced that world-renowned musician, composer, educator and Managing and Artistic Director of Jazz at Lincoln Center, Wynton Marsalis has joined the MMRF Honorary Board.
“Wynton Marsalis’ lifetime commitment to uplifting people through the arts inspires everyone around him to step forward to drive positive change in the world. He has been a tremendous friend to the MMRF and we could not be more thrilled nor more honored to welcome him to our esteemed Honorary Board of Directors,” shared Kathy Giusti, Founder and Executive Chairman of the MMRF.
Wynton Marsalis, a New Orleans native from a musical family, began performing both jazz and classical music at a young age. At age 17, he became the youngest musician ever to be admitted to Tanglewood’s Berkshire Music Center. In 1980 he joined the Jazz Messengers to study under master drummer and bandleader Art Blakey. Acclaimed for his virtuosic style and encyclopedic range of trumpet techniques, Marsalis has made more than 70 recordings, winning nine Grammy® Awards. He is the first jazz musician ever to win the Pulitzer Prize for Music and is a recipient of the National Medal of Arts. He continues to create a vital body of work that places him among the finest musicians and composers in the world. Marsalis helped lead the effort to construct Jazz at Lincoln Center’s home— Frederick P. Rose Hall—the first education, performance, and broadcast facility devoted to jazz, which opened its doors in October 2004. Under his leadership, Jazz at Lincoln Center has developed an international reputation presenting rich and diverse programming that includes concerts, web and radio broadcasts, and educational activities. A widely recognized advocate for American culture, Marsalis has devoted himself to elevating communities worldwide with egalitarian spirit of jazz.
In joining the MMRF Honorary Board, Marsalis stands alongside many celebrities and other high-profile individuals who support the MMRF in launching the next phase of revolutionary cancer research. Over the next 3 years, funds will be specifically raised to support technologically innovative and collaborative initiatives that will further transform how cures for cancer are found. MMRF Honorary Board members include Katie Couric, Bob Costas, Hoda Kotb, Diana Krall, Cindy Crawford, Clive Davis, Mariska Hargitay, Bonnie Hunt, Scott Hamilton, Deborah Norville, and many more.
About Multiple Myeloma (MM)
Multiple myeloma (MM) is a cancer of the plasma cell. It is the second most common blood cancer. An estimated 26,850 adults (14,000 men and 12,760 women) in the United States will be diagnosed with MM in 2015 and an estimated 11,240 people are predicted to die from the disease. The five-year survival rate for MM is approximately 45%, versus 28% in 1998.
About the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF)
The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) was established in 1998 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization by twin sisters Karen Andrews and Kathy Giusti, soon after Kathy’s diagnosis with multiple myeloma. The mission of the MMRF is to relentlessly pursue innovative means that accelerate the development of next-generation multiple myeloma treatments to extend the lives of patients and lead to a cure. As the world’s number-one private funder of multiple myeloma research, the MMRF has raised $275 million since its inception and directs nearly 90% of total budget to research and related programming.