The 13th annual Boardman High School Jazz Fest will take place on March 26 at 7 p.m. in the Boardman Performing Arts Center. The event will feature BHS jazz ensembles I, II and III along with special guest The University of Akron Jazz Trombone Group.
The evening begins with a performance by BHS jazz ensemble III – a group formed due to the overwhelming interest in the jazz program at Boardman. Director of Bands Thomas M. Ruggieri stays after school on Mondays and Tuesdays to teach and rehearse this group. Jazz III will perform “The Jody Grind,” “Tough Talk” and “Can’t Buy Me Love.”
BHS jazz ensemble II will take the stage with its unique blend of jazz and blues with some vocals thrown in for fun. Jazz II is the group that entertains crowds at some of Boardman’s basketball games. The band’s selections for the Jazz Fest will include “Moanin’,” Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition,” “Go Daddy O” and rap tune based on Herbie Hancock’s “Cantaloupe Island.”
The guest group this year will be The University of Akron Jazz Trombone Group under the direction of former BHS Jazz Fest Guest Artist John A. (Jack) Schantz. This group earned second place in the International Trombone Association’s Kai Winding Jazz Trombone Competition last year.
The headliner of the concert is the BHS jazz ensemble I. Jazz I will continue its tradition of high-energy and high-quality performances. Selections will include Charles Mingus’ “Boogie Stop Shuffle,” “Quincy Jones’ “Belly Roll,” “Tower of Power’s “Squib Cakes,” a fun vocal rendition of “Bring Me Sunshine” and more.
Jazz ensemble I is the top group in the Boardman Jazz program and continues to collect honors and unique opportunities. It will play an opening set for the Grammy Award-winning Gordon Goodwin’s Big Phat Band at Stambaugh Auditorium on April 24. Tickets for that show are available at www.stambaughauditorium.com.
The group is taking advantage of its standing invitation to perform at Swing 46 Jazz and Supper Club and Trump Tower in New York City this May. Jazz ensemble II will also perform at Trump.
For more performance dates, check the Boardman Band website at www.boardmanband.org.
Tickets for the Jazz Fest will be available at the door. The cost is $3 for adults and $2 for students. Senior citizens and children will be admitted free. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.