Jazz groups are golden

Five all star jazz students stand with their instruments and all star certificates

Congratulations to the jazz virtuosos at Albany High School! The school’s two jazz ensembles – The B Flats (intermediate level) and Jazzmanian Devils (advanced level) – both earned gold-level performances recently at the Fonda-Fultonville Jazz Festival.

Both groups are led by teacher John Halvorsen. 

The Jazzmanian Devils also won “Best Rhythm Section,” and several students in both bands earned All-Star awards for their individual performance. Jazzmanian Devils All Stars include Suzanne Penna (vibes), Toussaint Santicola-Jones (alto saxophone), Themba Pieterse (trumpet), and Lee Reh (vocals). B Flats All Stars are Ben Quist (electric bass), Noah Graber (guitar) and Conor Costello (trumpet).

Each band prepared three selections to be performed live while rated by two jazz educators.

The Jazzmanian Devils’ set included “The Chicken” by Pee Wee Ellis, “Misty” by Erroll Garner and “April Joy” by Pat Metheny. The B Flats set included “It's On” by George Duke, “Red Clay” by Freddie Hubbard and a mashup of “Mercy, Mercy, Mercy” by Joe Zawinul and “Chameleon” by Herbie Hancock.

Great job by all!