Our jazz program continues to offer a wide variety of experiences. There are two jazz ensembles and two jazz combos at the high school with 7th and 8th grade jazz bands at the middle school. All of these groups meet after school.
Jazz Ensemble I is directed by Mr. Wolloff and is a select group of students who earn placement through an audition process. This group meets twice a week and prepares a varied repertoire for a number of competitive arenas and performance throughout the season. They prepare a tape for the Essentially Ellington program each year and have been successful 3 times, heading to the Lincoln Center in New York City competing against the best High School Jazz bands in the country.
Jazz Ensemble II directed by Mr Peter Twiraga at the high school. This group is open to both high school and middle school students and develops techniques for playing swing. For many, it is this group that is the springboard to Jazz Ensemble I.
Both ensembles enter the Massachusetts Association of Jazz Educators (MAJE) South East District festival, at Stoughton each year, and if they are awarded a gold medal, they are eligible to enter the MAJE State Finals. Any gold medal finalists from this competition are given the honor to perform at the “Hatch Shell” in Boston, usually sometime in May
The jazz combo program is directed by Peter Levesque. They spend the season learning and honing their improvisational techniques. These talents were then exhibited at the annual Jazz Cafe held in June, a relaxed informal affair for all to enjoy
The King Philip Jazz program is committed to the understanding of America’s true music. Its roots and its great swing demand a music style that must be internalized through listening to, as well as performing it. There is no happier feeling than the feeling of swing. When it swings inside of you, one’s commitment to the music will be complete.
Potential Jazz Performances throughout the year:
Jazz I and Jazz II Winter Preview Show February
Jazz I Norwood Jazz Classic February
Jazz I and Jazz II MAJE South East Districts – Stoughton March
District Gold Medalists MAJE State Finals March
State Gold Medalists Hatch Shell Boston May
All Jazz groups Jazz night May
Jazz I and Jazz II Spring Pops May
Jazz I Norfolk Community Day June
Jazz Combos Jazz Café June
Jazz I Wrentham Concert on the Common June