Bridging Gaps: Words from founder, Leland Baker

Filmed at Animus Studios in East Providence, RI. Directed by Andrew Drachman.

About Bridging Gaps

Bridging Gaps is an exploration of the crucial place of improvisation in the artistic process. The goal is to promote improvisation as a creative process and educate the general public, including youth and other professional artists about improvisation's place in jazz music. The hope is that the audience/students can draw their own connection to jazz and find the process of improvisation applicable to their own lives and/or art forms. Bridging Gaps addresses improvisation and its role in various art forms (e.g, jazz, hip hop, dance, etc). The mission is to create a bridge of learning and understanding through various workshops and lectures based on how improvisation can enhance art and how an artist of any medium can implement it.

Praise For Bridging Gaps


“Leland is a great teacher, communicator and outstanding musician. He is positive, has a knack for analyzing situations and building programs and has been a pleasure to work with him.”

- Paul Rabinowitz: Executive director of Arts by the People

“With articulation and grace, I watched Leland lead a student discussion on the African diaspora--as it relates to the ethos of Jazz. This insight, placed within the local music scene of Providence, was key for my students to continue a critical awareness of music.”

- Erik DeLuca: Associate Professor at Brown University

Leland Baker is a phenomenal musician and inspirational educator! With Bridging Gaps, he brought a rich program about improvisation, melody, harmony, rhythm, composition and jazz history to TAPA - Trinity Academy for the Performing Arts. He invited in some of the finest musicians from the region to host workshops and really catered the curriculum to the unique needs and interests of our students. Leland’s dedication to preserving jazz culture and raising the next generation of youth musicians runs deep. He is deeply committed to providing real, hands-on, arts learning experiences for our youth artists. Our students grew immensely from working with Leland and Bridging Gaps this year!”

-Avi David: Musician-In-Residence, TAPA - Trinity Academy for the Performing Arts