West Ottawa Jazz Band wins awards | News
West Ottawa High School’s Jazz I enjoyed a successful April, earning all A’s at the State Jazz Festival, several awards at the Michigan State University Spartan Spectacular Jazz Festival, and then capping it all off with a clinic by a master jazz educator.
All three adjudicators at the Michigan State Band School Band and Orchestra Association’s State Jazz Festival gave the jazz ensemble a first division rating with A’s in each of the five areas judged. Also, based on his outstanding performance at the State Jazz Festival, junior trombonist Ben Hahn was selected to the Michigan Youth Arts Festival Jazz Ensemble that will perform in May. Junior baritone saxophonist Mitchell Jones was named honorable mention for the MYAF jazz ensemble.
West Ottawa’s Jazz I then continued their successful ways with an outstanding performance at the Michigan State University Spartan Spectacular Jazz Festival on April 18. The trombone section received an award for outstanding section. Jack Keinjans received an award for outstanding performance by a drummer. Additionally three of West Ottawa’s students were given outstanding soloists awards: Alex Theisen on bass, Ben Hahn on trombone and Mitchell Jones on baritone saxophone.
This past weekend WOHS Jazz I performed at the non-competitive Thornapple Arts Council Jazz Festival in Hastings. The group received a clinic following their performance by a master jazz educator and then listened to performances by various collegiate and professional jazz bands including the Liberty Call Navy Jazz Ensemble.
“This continues what has been a great year for West Ottawa’s Jazz I, which has included Guest Artist performances with professional jazz musicians Paul Keller and Robin Eubanks along with a shared performance with Michigan State University’s Jazz Orchestra I,” noted director Michael Hamann.
On Monday, June 8, West Ottawa High School’s Jazz I will open the Grand Rapids Summer Concert Series with a performance on the banks of the Grand River at Ah-Nab-Awen Park at 6:30 p.m.
Photo below - Front Row: Jared Norwood, Jenny Jasperse, Jack Kleinjans, Alex Theisen, Alexis VanAelst, Sarah Cremin, Amanda Frescura
Second Row: Abby Shepard, Rebecca Jones, Alondra Chavez, Garrett Borgman, Wes Neuman, Camden Mangelsdorf, Josh Hahn
Back Row: Katherine Hoekstra, Mitchell Jones, Ben Hahn