Modern Warrior

The story and sound of a combat veteran's journey

Thank you for a memorable New York City debut at the Sheen Center!

Modern Warrior is a live theatrical music experience co-created by United States Military Veteran Jaymes Poling and musician Dominick Farinacci. This dynamic production explores the psychological weights of war, the challenges of reintegration as a civilian, and the potential for positive personal and communal growth.

Narrated by Staff Sergeant Poling, who spent three years in Afghanistan as an infantryman with the 82nd Airborne Division, the autobiographical production details his time in the military and his subsequent transition to civilian life back home. It’s complemented by dynamic musical performances led by Dominick Farinacci (Mack Avenue recording artist and former Global Ambassador to Jazz at Lincoln Center).  


The Modern Warrior initiative aims to build bridges between veteran and civilian communities through live performances, collaborative workshops, sharing veteran stories and informative panel discussions. Modern Warrior works to help destigmatize our veterans’ experiences through deeper understanding from the community and by providing inspirational hope across communities.

Dominick Farinacci & Jaymes Poling

About the creators

Jaymes Poling grew up in Warren, Ohio and enlisted in the US Army at the age of 17. He was assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division in Fort Bragg, North Carolina as an infantryman. During his eight years with the division, he spent 3 years fighting in Afghanistan as a Machine Gunner, and Squad Leader.

Upon returning to Ohio at the age of 26, Jaymes was bothered by the portrayal of Combat Veterans in the media. Dealing with the memories of war, the loss of friends, and the isolation a Combat Veteran finds when leaving the military, Jaymes began to find the potential for growth that comes through adversity. Through education, writing, and public speaking, Jaymes came to recognize the universality of his journey. 

Jaymes will receive a finance degree at John Carroll University in May 2018, and spends time speaking across the country while partnering with veteran organizations to help veterans find their own peace after war. 

Trumpeter Dominick Farinacci has been recently credited the title Global Ambassador to Jazz at Lincoln Center by Wynton Marsalis, working to further integrate jazz into communities around the world. He graduated from The Juilliard School in 2005 launching his career in Japan with a prolific run of eight albums, later releasing two more globally. He has performed in more than 120 cities in 14 countries around the world, was a featured guest on ABC’s Good Morning America, and is a TED Speaker. Music icon Quincy Jones says of Dominick’s accomplishments in performance, recording, education & advocacy, “This kid is 360 degrees!”

His most recent recording “Short Stories” is produced by Tommy LiPuma. This is Tommy & Dominick’s first collaboration, and was recorded in their hometown of Cleveland at the Gill and Tommy LiPuma Center for Creative Arts.

In addition to touring around the world with his band, Dominick has been successful in his personal endeavors on bringing music into the community through Arts and Wellness & Education. He was invited by TED to be a TED Speaker at the 2014 TED MED conference at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. He is a featured performer for the Cleveland Clinic in both Ohio and Abu Dhabi, and organized the very first jazz performance for patients in Abu Dhabi in collaboration with the Cleveland Clinic and the Abu Dhabi Music and Arts Foundation. For Dominick, music and health go hand in hand, most recently organizing panel discussions around patient-doctor communication through music with Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar.

Dominick has been a leading advocate in music education development, most recently featured at the Community College Association of America in D.C. He served as Music Consultant to the Amy Winehouse Foundation, and initially launched a music education program at the Gill and Tommy LiPuma Center for Creative Arts in Cleveland, Ohio, which brought together 30+ international artists involving over 3,000 students. This successful initiative has since expanded to the GCC, in schools such as Weill Cornell Medical College, Qatar Music Academy, the American School of Doha among others.


Modern Warrior is endorsed and supported by the United War Veterans Council (Producer of the New York City Veterans Day Parade). The Catskill Jazz Factory proudly serves as creative co-founder and consultant.