Anthony Fung attended the Community Music program from 2008 - 2010 and has just become the first Canadian to be accepted into the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz. We caught up with Anthony to ask him a few questions about this latest accomplishment, as well as life as a musician and his time at Humber.
What are you currently working on; what excites you about the project?
I’m currently working on many different projects but my main focus has been on finishing up a masters degree from the Berklee Global Jazz Institute in Contemporary Performance. What excites me is that I am constantly being challenged by my mentors Danilo Perez, John Patitucci, Joe Lovano, Terri Lyne Carrington, and also my peers. They inspire me daily to become a better human being and to use music as a vehicle to inspire others. I’m also working towards new original music to be recorded and released for an EP with my quintet for next Fall.
How does it feel to find out you’re the first Canadian to be accepted to the Monk Institute?
I feel ecstatic, honoured and inspired to be the first Canadian chosen for the Institute. When I was studying in high school I was well aware of this amazing program, and how the members had the opportunity to learn hands on from the masters of jazz. Being accepted into this program is a dream come true, and at the same time is a huge responsibility for me to continue working on my craft.
What other things have you done since finishing Humber’s Community Music Program?
After finishing Humber Community Music, I began studying at the Berklee College of Music. There I met so many amazing musicians from all around the world coming from different backrounds. In my second semester, I was admitted into the prestigious Global Jazz Institute led by Danilo Perez. Through this program, I had the opportunity to travel and perform in outreach trips around the world such as Spain, France, West Africa, and Panama.
In June 2014 I released my first album with my band entitled “Chronicles” where we travelled to Canada for our album release tour and played at the Toronto and Montreal Jazz Festivals.
Last year, I travelled to Panama to perform at the Panama Percussion Festival and had the amazing opportunity of performing with Wayne Shorter as part of a fundraiser to raise money for one of the students in Panama to attend Berklee on a full scholarship.
As I mentioned before, I’m now finishing up a masters degree and also planning to travel to Panama in the summer to teach at the Danilo Perez Foundation.
How did Humber’s Community Music Program prepare you for what you’re doing now? Any particular memories you’d like to share?
Humber Community Music was such a great send-off for me because the program was always hands-on and challenging. Through Humber, I had a taste of what it was like to work with professional musicians; workshopping new music every week, performing in local venues and also travelling to Ottawa to perform at MusicFest Canada.
Every Saturday I would travel 2 hours from Richmond Hill just to attend an ensemble class and I will never forget how hard Kirk MacDonald was on me, and I am forever grateful!
Find out more about Anthony on his website anthonyfungmusic.com, or find him on social media:
YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3tEztEbsAKkf37hjs13SGg