THS jazz bands to hold free concert

By NATHAN HOWELL | Staff Writer

ALABASTER – Different ensembles from the Thompson High School jazz program will be featured at the “Swing into Spring” performance on April 17 on the THS front lawn.

The event will run from 2-6:30 p.m, and will take place in a staged area in front of the fountain at the school.

Graham Bennett, director of jazz studies, said that the event was an opportunity for the different groups to showcase their talents, and would provide an outlet for people to get out and enjoy an event based around music.

“The Thompson High School Jazz Ensemble, Jazz Lab Band, Jazz Combo I, Jazz Combo II, Percussion Ensemble, and Faculty Jazz Combo will be performing on Saturday, April 17,” Bennett said. “This is an amazing opportunity to show off all of the hard work that the Thompson High School Jazz Program students have put in.”

According to Bennett this performance serves to replace the traditional performance that the bands do called “Java and Jazz,” due to several factors including the ongoing pandemic and testing that many students are doing during this week.

“We did not feel comfortable enough to do our performance inside,” Bennett explained. “So, we thought about it, and I came up with this idea. All of the groups will perform right outside of the fountains. We will have them on risers, and each group will perform a set for the guests.”

Bennett explained that the different groups had severely limited opportunities to perform over the last year, so he wanted to create a situation where everyone could come out and see what they had been working on in a safe way.

“We have been working really hard on this,” he said. “This is for our kids. We really want them to be able to do this. We have had a great group of people working together to help make this thing happen.”

Admission is free for the performances. Bennet said that he wanted to have as many people as possible come out and support the students, and the faculty who have been working so hard on putting together their pieces.