SOUTH BEACH JAZZ FESTIVAL Dena Stewart CONVERSATIONS, NEWS The First Annual South Beach Jazz Festival will take place throughout various venues in Miami Beach December 7 through December 11, 2016, with many of the events free and open to the public. Performances will take place at the Colony Theatre, on stages set up throughout Lincoln Road, at Hotel Astor and Rare.Presented by Power Access, the South Beach Jazz Festival is an event unlike any other, “Each musical performance will showcase the artistry of at least one person with a disability,” according to R. David New, who conceived the event. “The sheer talent of the artists will promote the festival’s dual goal, to entertain, and to define others by ability rather than disability. The festival is all about bringing our community together through the universal sound of music.”Now age 46, David lost his sight 15 years ago and was rendered paralyzed from the waist down for two years. Since that time, in addition to being a creative visual artist and designer, he has been a staunch advocate for people with disabilities, especially with his ongoing efforts with the City of Miami Beach. Through his Miami Beach-based companies, Ability Explosion, Access Now and Power Access, David has worked tirelessly to raise awareness of people with disabilities, including the “Dining in the Dark” and Biz-Ability events. The South Beach Jazz Festival presents 16 jazz artists over the course of four days, with performances produced by KCC Productions. These jazz artists include The Lenard Rutledge Ensemble, The French Caravan, Raul Midón Trio, Dr. Ed Calle Jazz Ensemble, Ricky Williams Quartet, Oriente, Mike Gerber Trio, Luis Mario Ochoa Ensemble, Karina Iglesias & The Nu Thang, Felipe Lamogila featuring Afro-Cuban Beats, The French Horn Collective, Rolando Grooscors Ensemble, Wendy Pedersen Quartet, Reuben Hoch Chassidic Jazz Project, Diane Schuur & Dr. Ed Calle’s Grammy Award Winner Mamblue Big Band. The Colony Theatre and Rare will host ticketed concerts, with free performances on stages at Euclid Circle and 1111 Lincoln Road. Information about the artists and the lineup for performances, as well as tickets, go to sobejazz.com, 786 607-JAZZ (5299).To learn more about David and his artwork, please visit his website: rdavidnew.com/the-artistConversations With Stewart B Stewart will soon feature a conversation with David.