Community Students Amaze Audience with Final Concert at the Ark

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Community Students Amaze Audience with Final Concert at the Ark

Sterling Stoll

Sterling Stoll

Sterling Stoll

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The winds are whipping down main street, the clouds are an ominous slate-grey, and downtown, the populace are cowering inside of the local retail stores. No, this isn’t the opening scene of a horror movie, it’s simply the day of the CHS end-of-the-year jazz concert at the Ark. Forget the tornado warning put in effect that afternoon, the show must go on!

This year’s jazz concert was a success of immense proportions. Seven bands participated in the concert, with poetry interludes by Tracy Scherdt, Isaac Scobey-Thal, and Jacob Johnson. All the wonderful music was put into context by the dimly lit yet spacious atmosphere the Ark provided, allowing the students to get the feel of an intimate jazz club. Even more impressive than playing at a world-renowned music club is the fact the Community manages to draw in a sizable crowd, considering we are just a high school.             

The jazz concert at the Ark is a nice way to cap off the year, but, you know, in this case it’s going to cap off my career at Community.”

— Adlai Reinhart

“It’s been at the ark for like three years now, and every year, I just marvel at the fact that Community High School can pack the Ark. I know it’s like, parents and stuff, but at the same time, there are people who legitimately come to listen to the Community High School jazz program,” said senior Adlai Reinhart, whose last performance at the Ark was a bittersweet experience.

“The jazz concert at the Ark is a nice way to cap off the year, but, you know, in this case it’s going to cap off my career at Community.”

For underclassmen, the concert symbolized more of a coming-of-age experience than a final goodbye. Many jazz II students were excited for the concert, but that excitement did not come without nerves.

“It’s been really hectic because a lot of people really haven’t  been practicing, so Jack is kind of freaking out,” sophomore Patrick Eagle said, expressing his pre-show worries. However, come showtime, the jazz II combo pulled off a great set, including the lightning-fast bop tune “Moose the Mooche,” as well as the classic calypso tune “St. Thomas.”

Some of the highlights of the night were the latin song “La Malanga” which featured two jazz IV combined into one, playing such instruments as the conga drums, vibraphone, and clave. Senior Alexandra Cubero-Matos led the band, belting out the lyrics in Spanish and getting the crowd to clap along with every beat. The other two jazz IV bands combined for a cover of the Tower of Power hit “Soul Vaccination.” With Adam Kahana taking on the vocal part, the combined bands backed him up with a sound worthy of a Motown record deal in the ‘70s.

The students were very appreciative of jazz director Jack Wagner, and all the hard work he did to organize the concert, as well as the work he did all year in order to prepare the students for the Ark.

Reinhart is immensely appreciative of Wagner’s encouragement over the years. “I recognize that [Jack has] helped me to reach what might be my peak potential as a high schooler in these last four years, and I’m excited to continue my education as a jazz musician because Jack nurtured that excitement.”

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