Packer musicians take part in a weekend of jazz
Published 3:56 pm Sunday, March 8, 2015
On Feb. 27 and 28, nearly 50 AHS students took part in a two-day weekend of jazz.
Members of both Jazz One and Packer Jazz bands took part in clinics at both Augsburg College and the University of Minnesota, working with some of the best jazz performers and educators in the state.
Over the course of the weekend, students had the opportunity to hear both high school and college ensembles, perform on two college campuses and received feedback from several performers and teachers active in the Minneapolis and St. Paul jazz scene.
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This is the first mini-tour for the jazz bands, and won’t be the last according to director Bradley Mariska.
“These sorts of opportunities are so beneficial for our students – not only do they get a chance to perform in amazing concert halls, but they get critiqued by some truly talented jazz professionals,” Mariska said in press release. “The students learn a lot.”
Following the two days of performing, members of AHS Jazz One completed the weekend by giving a performance of Big Band standards for World War II veterans and their families on Saturday night at the Austin VFW.
The jazz bands next major performance will be competitive Eau Claire Jazz Festival on April 18. This is one of the nation’s most prestigious high school jazz competitions.
Last year, Jazz One placed fourth in their division. This will be the first year that Packer Jazz is competing.