Creative Music Foundation

Music is our common language

The Creative Music Foundation makes it possible to profoundly experience and express our deep connection with the transforming energies of music, our universal language. CMF programs focus on the common elements of all music, emphasizing keen awareness, personal expression, intensive listening and cross-cultural communication, and providing unique opportunities for musicians, students and listeners from different backgrounds and traditions to explore together, share, develop, and broaden their musical understanding and sensitivity. CMF pursues its mission through workshops, residencies, coaching, concerts, recordings and archival projects that engage both listeners and musicians in the USA and around the world.

Creative Music Foundation News

CMF Launches Indiegogo Campaign to Raise Funds to Digitize the CMS Archive

Based on the success of its first ‘crowd sourcing’ campaign on this summer, the Creative Music Foundation has launched a second fundraising campaign on, aiming to raise $4,000 to help produce compilation CD box sets comprised of music from the CMS Archive Project, over 400 concerts that took place at the Creative Music Studio between 1973 and 1984. Some of the artists in the CMS Archive include: Jimmy Giuffre, Ed Blackwell, Don Cherry, Oliver Lake, Olu Dara, Colin Walcott and Cecil Taylor, as well as CMF co-founders Karl Berger and Ingrid Sertso, among hundreds of others. CMF needs the funds to help finish restoration, digitization and production on the first volume of 3-CD box sets, the Creative Music Studio Archive Project Series. CMF’s Indiegogo campaign runs until October 31st.

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Karl Berger's Improvisers Orchestra on Friday, September 13 at El Taller

Karl Berger's Improvisers Orchestra starts its new season at El Taller, 2710 Broadway (corner of W 104 Street). The KBIO, founded in 2011, celebrates its 60th appearance in New York. El Taller provides an informal, generous, almost party-like experience. 7:30PM Workshops/Rehearsal, 9:00PM Performance

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Creative Music Foundation Launches First Crowd-Sourcing Campaign -- Raising Funds to Digitize its Archive of Rare Recordings

The nonprofit Creative Music Foundation has launched its first crowd-sourcing campaign on, aiming to raise $4,000 to help produce compilation CD box sets comprised of music from the CMS Archive Project, over 400 concerts that took place at the Creative Music Studio between 1973 and 1984.

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Creative Music Studio’s 40th Anniversary Workshop Recap: Four-day Intensive Features Workshops and Unique Concert

The four-day workshop to celebrate the Creative Music Studio’s 40th anniversary was a rousing success. Guiding artists such as Oliver Lake, Dave Douglas, John Medeski, Steven Bernstein and CMS co-founder Karl Berger captivated, engaged and played music with workshop participants day and night. Along with other guiding artists, these masters played evening concerts in unique combinations not previously heard.

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Creative Music Studio's 40th Anniversary Workshop Opens Evening Concerts to the Public

Each night during the CMS 40th Anniversary Workshop, May 20-23, a different group of musicians will perform from 8-11pm. The concerts will take place at the Full Moon Resort, Big Indian, NY, about 30 minutes west of Woodstock, in the Cafe, and will feature workshop Guiding Artists such as Oliver Lake, Dave Douglas, John Medeski and many others. The concerts are open to the public.

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Karl Berger and Ingrid Sertso Receive ‘Jazz Heroes’ Award

The Jazz Journalists Association named CMF co-founders Karl Berger and Ingrid Sertso as two of its 2013 ‘Jazz Heroes.’ Based on nominations from local communities and jazz journalists, Berger and Sertso were named for their ‘dedication to local efforts that nurture the spirit of jazz and ensure its transmission to new generations of jazz lovers.’

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Creative Music Foundation in the News: U.K.'s Wire Magazine Features CMS

The history of the Creative Music Studio, the Woodstock Utopia where Karl Berger and Ingrid Sertso channelled Don Cherry and Ornette Coleman’s Free Jazz philosophies into radical musical education, by Howard Mandel

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Keyboard Wizard John Medeski to Join CMS 40th Anniversary Workshop

John Medeski is joining with Karl Berger, Ingrid Sertso, Dave Douglas, Oliver Lake, Steven Bernstein, Don Byron, Marilyn Crispell, Mark Helias, Tani Tabbal, Ken Wessel, Ken Filiano and Thomas Buckner as Guiding Artists for the Creative Music Studio’s 40th Anniversary Workshop. The four-day workshop offers musicians and listeners a chance to participate in a variety of intensive master classes, presentations, performances and jams.

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Karl Berger’s Improvisers Orchestra in the News: The New York Times

Ben Ratliff, begins his April 19 NY Times article on the KBIO: "Karl Berger, the jazz pianist, vibraphonist and conductor of improvisers, ran a workshop for his orchestra before its performance at Shapeshifter Lab in Brooklyn on Thursday night. He uses a few simple hand signals for duration, attack and pitch, and the musicians wanted to be sure they were interpreting the specifics correctly. But Mr. Berger seemed more concerned with telling them something very general. “Hear your sound as if you’re playing the sound of the whole group,” he told them."

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Music Mind Workshop in Woodstock

8 PM each Tuesday, April 9-29, at Photosensualis, 15 Rock City Road. This month only, Karl Berger and Ingrid Sertso offer a series of 4 MUSIC MIND Workshops in Woodstock. The workshops are open to everyone who wants to get more out of listening to music; or wants to play with more ease and fluidity. At the core of the workshop is GaMaLa Taki, a method of rhythm training that does not require instruments or previous musical training. GaMaLa TaKi brings one into an intimate relationship with rhythm, transforming their experience of music. This shift in perception also helps to adjust and ground the many rhythms of everyday life.

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CMS Advisory Circle

Peter Apfelbaum, Steven Bernstein, Robert Browning, Mark Christman, Marc Epstein, Ken Filiano, Steve Gorn, Frederic Hand, Klaus Hekking, Laura Kaminsky, Bill Laswell, George Lewis, John Medeski, Roscoe Mitchell, Janine Nichols, Pauline Oliveros, Frederic Rzewski, Alexander von Schlippenbach, Michael Shore, John Zorn.

CMS Archive CDs For Sale

CMS recordings for Sale

The second limited edition 3-CD set from the CMS Archive Project features rare small group, large ensemble and world music gems from Don Cherry, Paul Motian, Lee Konitz, Anthony Braxton, Collin Walcott and many more. It's just $25.

Support the Creative Music Foundation

Please support the Creative Music Foundation’s programs to nurture the next generation of improvising, creative musicians and to preserve and share our music globally. Tax-deductible donations can be made with any credit card via the PayPal donate button or DAF Direct donation box below -- or by mailing a check, payable to “Creative Music Foundation,” and sending it to Creative Music Foundation, PO Box 671, Woodstock, NY 12498.


Creative Music Studio Workshop - Spring 2016

CMS is Grateful for Generous Support From:

New York City Council on the Arts

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