Jazz Band concert ends the year with a strong performance


Photo by Isabella Mattran (10).

Jen Quach, Editor in Chief

On Thursday, May 9, in the Jennifer L. Dorsey-Howley (JLDH) Performing Arts Center at LSE, Jazz Band I, II and III had their last Band concert of the year. It was a strong and memorable way to finish the school year.

That night, all three jazz bands displayed their talents and played a variety of classic songs, such as “All In For The Blues” by Doug Beach, as well as “Song For My Daughter” by Jay Chattaway. The bands are divided by their playing level and experience, with Jazz I being an audition group and Jazz III being a group with mostly underclassmen.

Photo by Isabella Mattran (10). Jazz I performs at the Jennifer L. Dorsey-Howley (JLDH) Performing Arts Center.

Karly Codr (10), who plays trombone for Jazz III, loves jazz because of its ability to bring people with similar abilities and taste in music together.

“Jazz, to me, is a way that people can get together and play fun and challenging music,” Codr said. “Even though current music can help express feelings, jazz has a way of being able to make any mood more dramatic and a lot more expressive.”

Outside of the concerts, the jazz community is close. Codr feels like she’s been able to meet many people and make new friends because of Band.

“My favorite part of Jazz Band is not only the songs that we play, but also the people,” Codr said. “Jazz Band always has a way to make fun out of practice, even if on that day I don’t necessarily want to go to practice. There is always one person that always makes everyone laugh.”

Taylor Velgersdyk (10) is second chair alto in Jazz I, despite only being a sophomore. Like many other people, she didn’t start off with a usual jazz instrument, which is typically a saxophone, trumpet, trombone or rhythm section instruments.

“I started playing jazz in seventh grade. I was playing clarinet, but my teacher suggested I learn saxophone and try out. So over the summer, I rented an alto and taught myself how to play. Now, I play alto in Jazz and Clarinet in Wind Ensemble,” Velgersdyk said. “I play jazz because it’s fun. It requires a lot of focus and listening to the other parts, but once everyone is in sync, the energy is really exciting. It’s different, because the music is swinging.”

With a variety of instruments playing together in harmony and unison to create an array of fun sounds, Jazz Band differs from ordinary Band. There are individual pieces that stick out, such as solos and parts of improvisation, which uses a set of chords to make up a melody.

“My favorite part is when we finish learning and cleaning up the chart and the whole band is swinging and playing with full energy,” Velgersdyk said. “Every part is connected, and it’s cool being a part of the music.”