The Hall High Jazz Program consists of--two full jazz big bands which meet daily as a part of the academic schedule and three jazz combos that meet in the evenings. Combined, the jazz program performs annually more than 35 times a year.
The Hall High School jazz program has enjoyed a rich and storied tradition of excellence during the past 60 plus years! Born in the 1950's under the leadership and vision of Bill Stanley, the jazz program has continued to be a nationally recognized institution. The band is currently directed by James Antonucci. It is co-directed by Larry Gareau, Haig Shahverdian, and Stephanie Reynolds-Wattel.
The Concert Jazz Band has received numerous awards and accolades since its inception. The big band and combos have consistently placed first at the Berklee Jazz Festival, and have received numerous awards in many categories of the annual Downbeat Magazine Student Awards. The band has repeatedly been a finalist at the Essentially Ellington Competition and Lincoln Center, tours Europe bi-annually, has performed at the White House, and has had many members chosen for the Nationally Grammy Jazz Ensemble.
There are currently many Hall High School alumni making their mark in the global jazz community. Hall Jazz alumni include renowned jazz musicians Richie Barshay (drums), Joel Frahm (tenor sax), Brad Mehldau (piano), Erica vonKleist (alto sax), Peter McGuinness (trombone), Noah Preminger (tenor sax), Alexa Tarantino (alto sax) and Patrick Zimmerli (tenor sax).
Another 60 year tradition is the school's annual Pops 'n Jazz production, a unique and collaborative production featuring the jazz bands, jazz singers, and jazz dancers. Students perform for five nights for an audience of more than four thousand, and they have shared the stage with world-renowned artists such as Phil Woods, Randy Brecker, Joe Lovano, Ted Nash, John Daversa, Arturo O'Farrill, John Mosca and Luis Bonilla. The Concert Jazz Band has commissioned works by composers such as John Fedchock, John Daversa, Matt Harris, and Eric Richards. Please Pops 'n Jazz for more information about Pops ‘n Jazz.
If you are interested in hearing the jazz bands or jazz combos perform, please contact us.