INDONESIAN jazz prodigy Joey Alexander, at the age of 12, can now add ‘Performed at the White House’ to his list of accomplishments.
It is the latest milestone for Alexander, who was previously nominated for two Grammy awards and rose to the top of the U.S. Billboard 200 chart for jazz and traditional jazz.
The event at the White House in Washington D.C. was officially known as the “International Jazz Day All-Star Global Concert”, and featured an impressive list of musicians, including Aretha Franklin, Dianne Reeves, Diana Krall, James Morrison, Jamie Cullum, and Sting.
Watch Alexander’s performance here:
U.S. President Barack Obama opened the event with a spirited tribute to jazz and its history, while Hollywood actor Morgan Freeman hosted the event and introduced all the performers.
The young Alexander participated in a memorable segment with legendary saxophonist Wayne Shorter and Esperanza Spalding, during which the trio played Shorter’s “Footprints”, making quite the impression on the audience as he kept up with the more seasoned musicians.
The New York Times wrote on the performance and singled out Alexander’s performance in particular:
“It flowed like water along a creek bed, burbling with inquisitive interplay — a transporting experience in just four minutes, and the most purely musical exchange of the concert. (Mr. Alexander is 12, which is usually the first thing to know about him. He made that fact a distant afterthought.)”
Alexander performed at the Grammy Awards in February and would have been the youngest winner in its history had he won. He was born in Denpasar, the capital of Bali, but now is based in New York City.
Playing jazz since the tender age of six, Alexander’s career has now skyrocketed beyond all expectations.