The Alliance High School (AHS) Music Department is preparing for its Jazz Night on Thursday, April 20.
The night will feature the AHS Jazz Orchestra with performances from Minerva High School, Carrollton High School, Canton South High School, Malone University and the Alliance Symphony Big Band. Attendees will enjoy songs that are jazz standards, swing charts, funk, fusion, blues and a number of other styles.
The night will start at 5:30 pm in the main gym with a pre-show spaghetti dinner fundraiser hosted by Carrie Chunat, AHS choir director, and some of her students. Attendees will have the option of enjoying a spaghetti dinner for $7. Meals will also be available for take out.
There will be vocal jazz performances starting at 6:15 pm by the AHS Concert Choirs, Choralaires and Jetsetters.
The instrumental jazz performances will start in the auditorium at 7 pm. Each group will perform for 15 minutes leading up to the final performance by the Alliance Symphony Big Band, whose set will last approximately 45 minutes. There is no cost to attend the concert.
The AHS Jazz Orchestra started in September of last year and made its debut appearance at the AHS Winter Band Concert in December. The band consists of 23 students and is led by Billy Sheak, an AHS band teacher. The Jazz Orchestra started out as a jazz band a few years ago and has grown to include orchestra and choir students as well. The students meet entirely outside of the school day to learn and rehearse.
The Jazz Night will be the first event of this kind the students have had a chance to take part in.
“They are excited to play the music, but also to hear the other schools play, as well as myself with the Alliance Symphony Big Band. I am the drummer,” Sheak said.
Sheak’s goal is to make the Jazz Night an annual event and to have it grow over the years.
“I am excited to expose our community to more jazz music and building a solid Jazz scene in Alliance,” Sheak Said. “Jazz is America’s original music. It is built on improvisational skills and unity. Jazz is an important part of anyone’s musical education.”
For more information about Alliance City Schools, visit www.alliancecityschools.org.