Once again, jazz music will echo through the halls of West Ranch High School as its music program hosts the Super Jazz at the Ranch Festival on May 18.
The daylong jazz festival hosted by West Ranch is set to feature a variety of performances from 37 different high school and junior high school jazz bands, as well as competitions and clinics for the students.
“It’s a competition for schools to come and perform, and they get their feedback,” said Brian Leff, WRHS director of jazz studies. “And I bring in professional musicians to teach and inspire the students.”
During the day, there will be three venues that are scheduled to feature various performances and groups, while an hour of the day will be set aside for students to attend one of the festival’s professionally run clinics.
“The clinics are all related to jazz, and students there can learn everything from jazz improvisation to rhythm section playing to brass technique,” said Leff. “Plus there will be guest performances.”
The WRHS jazz director said the festival is important for the educational and musical opportunities being afforded to students, but it also functions as the school program’s largest fundraiser.
“It’s important for three reasons: it’s important for student performers to put their hard work in front of the adjudicators and get feedback and keep improving upon their music; the community can see what jazz education is like; and it’s important for our own school to make money for our program so we can do everything,” Leff said. “And it’s fun.”
All-day general admission to Super Jazz at the Ranch is $10, and admission for students and seniors is $7. Food concessions will be available.
For additional information, contact Brian Leff, director of jazz studies, West Ranch High School, at [email protected].