INDIVIDUAL - SCAD ID - #237
Mark Rapp, South Carolina’s Jazz Ambassador and 2020 Experience Columbia Ambassador, grew up in Florence, South Carolina. Mark earned a Bachelors in Music Performance from Winthrop University and a Masters in Jazz from the University of New Orleans. Mark has a storied career in jazz from New Orleans, New York to Europe and around many parts of the world. From sold out shows at Dizzy’s Club at Jazz at Lincoln Center to the famed Blue Note jazz club in Greenwich Village, he’s performed solo gigs in Switzerland, Croatia, France, to Boston, Washington, San Francisco and New Orleans. He’s taken the stage with Branford Marsalis, Wess “Warmdaddy” Anderson, Delfeayo Marsalis to fellow South Carolinians Hootie and the Blowfish, Darius Rucker, and Edwin McCain.
Mark brought his hard-earned, real-life experience and expertise back home to South Carolina in 2012. Fueled with enthusiasm of the talent here, he worked to unite jazz initiatives throughout the state and founded ColaJazz. He established this organization with the mission to elevate jazz in our community while offering engaging outlets to experience this unique form of musical expression to the public. Mark has a steadfast passion for bringing Jazz appreciation and the lessons Jazz teaches to our young people.
Through Mark’s Jazz in the Schools programs, young people learn about improvisation, the role of instruments and jazz history. And even more so, through Jazz, we learn about communication, self-discovery, and finding value in the individual while celebrating and supporting the group. We learn about jazz music on a deeper level and are uplifted through our shared musical experience.