Largest U.S. High School Jazz Fest to Host 3,000 Musicians

By
Allen Bush
February 23, 2012
A performer at the 2011 High School Jazz Festival.
Photo by Phil Farnsworth

Berklee College of Music's 44th High School Jazz Festival will showcase over 3,000 students and 200 bands and vocal ensembles from 13 U.S. states and Ontario, Canada, competing for $175,000 in scholarships to Berklee's Five-Week Summer Performance Program. The largest high school jazz festival in the U.S. will include clinics and concerts by drummer Kendrick Scott '02, saxophonist Hailey Niswanger '11 and SF JAZZ faculty members.  Berklee's Tower of Power and P-Funk ensembles, the Berklee Rainbow Band, and the Berklee City Music High School Academy will perform.

The entire event is free and open to the public, and will take place on Saturday, March 10, 2012, at the Hynes Convention Center, 900 Boylston Street, 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Scholarship and award winners will be announced at 6:00 p.m., followed by a winners showcase concert at 7:30 p.m. Find the complete schedule at berkleejazz.org.

Prestigious honors will also be awarded to a band director and a student for outstanding achievements.  Dr. Ferdinand A. Pasqua, director of bands and district liaison for Harrison (NY) County Public Schools, will receive the Take Note Award for his innovation in contemporary music education. As this year's winner of the Herb Pomeroy Jazz Composition/Arranging Contest, Princeton (NJ) High School student Frank Rein will hear his winning piece, "I Think I'll Miss You Most Of All," performed by the Berklee Rainbow Band, and will receive a full scholarship for a Berklee Five Week Summer Performance Program.