Watch Ava’s latest video of “les étoiles” here!

Ava Preston is a 14-year-old singer/songwriter based in the Cleveland area. Most recently, Ava won 1st place in the 2018 National Downbeat Magazine Student Music Awards in two categories: Best Jazz Vocalist & Best Blues, Pop/Rock Vocalist in Junior High School. She also was invited to perform for TEDX at the Goodyear Theater in Akron, Ohio.

Already a regular performer at prestigious venues in the Cleveland/Akron area (including Blu Jazz+, Nighttown, Bop Stop at the Music School Settlement & The Beachland Ballroom), Ava's mentors include pianist Theron Brown (Director of the Rubber City Blues & Jazz & Blues Festival), trumpeter Dominick Farinacci (TED Speaker & former Global Ambassador to Jazz at Lincoln Center) and several other iconic artists in the area. She is currently working on a new recording project with Dominick, and plans to debut her latest music in Cleveland, July 2018.

Ava's artistic influences and inspiration are best explained in her own words. She writes:

Creativity is the lifeblood of all of my music. It shapes my reality and fuels my performance and writing. The subtle things in life are what inspire me to create: everything from watching rain fall to drawing a scene seems to spark some sort of melody. I have found that it is harder to press your mind for an idea than it is to just sit back and let ideas flow natrually. I use my emotions, my dream journal, and various meditation sessions to come upon inspiration.

I find people inspiring most of all. By people, I am refering to artists of music and such. I find great joy in listening to the vocal “greats” including Ella Fitsgerald, Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughn, Louis Armstrong and Nina Simone, to name a few. Their strong voices, not only in their singing, but in equality for all, truly made jazz into a movement as much as a genre. More modern artists such as Somi, Nora Jones, Esperanza Spalding, Diana Krall, Sarah Bareilles, Stevie Nicks, and Eva Cassidy foster my fondness of music and stimulate my creative expression.

Label me, I conform.
Accept me, I create.
— Ava Preston