Education Days 2017
Tri-C JazzFest Education Days Dazzle
Tri-C JazzFest took its Education Days on the road April 11 – 13 to three host sites: Westlake High School, Firestone High School (Akron) and Tri-C’s Eastern Campus. Each day started at 11 a.m. with adjudicated performances and culminated with outrageous sets by the Michigan State University Jazz Orchestra.
Among the many highlights were interactive master classes led by bassist Rodney Whitaker, drummer Carl Allen and trumpeter Dominick Farinacci. Imbued with big doses of humor, the classes covered call and response, the fundamentals of swing and, yes, even life lessons! The guest artists challenged the students every step of the way, asking them to sing their parts (even drummers) and, to their horror and delight, having them dance. The sobering news for the students: All of the greats practice four to six hours a day.
On top of it all, the Stokes Legacy Jazz Orchestra – an inter-generational band of middle-schoolers to pros – made its debut, with a dynamic performance of the music of Duke Ellington.