As I mentioned in an earlier post, the Ballard High School jazz band was invited to play in a prestigious nationwide high school jazz competition, Essentially Ellington, in New York City. It was Ballard’s first time being at this impressive jazz festival. This weekend, they along with two other Seattle schools and twelve other nationwide high schools tooted their horns to the Ellington tunes of “Night in Tunisia,” “Tutti for Cootie,” “Riding on the Blue Note,” and other Ellington classics.
Roosevelt, Ballard, and Mountlake Terrace represented the Puget Sound area very well at the competition. Roosevelt High, well-known for its quality jazz band program and a regular competitor in “Essentially Ellington,” won second place at the festival! Ballard High won individual accolades for its performance. I would keep my eye on trumpet player and senior Sam Zisette and vocalist Jade Likkel, both Ballard High students. They each received awards for their performance at the festival. Congratulations, Ballard High!
Ballardites, toot your horns! Ballard High School is one of fifteen high school nationwide to be selected to compete in the 2012 Essentially Ellington festival in New York City. Ballard will be competing against various high schools, including Mountlake Terrace and Roosevelt High School. The annual jazz festival will take place May 4-6th at the Lincoln Center in Manhattan. It will be Ballard High School’s first year at the festival.
Participating at the Essentially Ellington festival is a high honor for a high school jazz musician. This year, there were 111 schools for the 15 available spots! What’s especially interesting is how the Seattle area high schools have continued to dominate the festival since being invited to participate in 1999. Most notable is Roosevelt High School’s continued appearance and repeat wins. This is just further proof that Seattle is still home to great music and musicians, including Quincy Jones!
As a former high school jazz musician and Ballard resident, I could not be more proud for Ballard High School. I hope they enjoy the experience and place well at the festival. If you would like to help out, you can support Ballard’s award-winning Jazz Band by getting tickets to see them perform at “Hot Java, Cool Jazz” at The Paramount on March 30th. Buy tickets through BHS band members, or at the Market Street Ballard Starbucks! 100% of proceeds for tickets sold thru Ballard will benefit the BHS Jazz Band’s trip to NYC.