The Lower Merion High School Music Department recently hosted an outstanding evening of musical entertainment at the 2023 Lower Merion Jazz Festival! Participating high schools in this year's event were Methacton, Marple Newtown, La Salle, Phoenixville, Radnor, Penn Wood , Harriton and Neshaminy. These groups were also joined by the Bala Cynwyd, Black Rock and Welsh Valley jazz bands as well as a trio of Lower Merion High School’s musical ensembles: Ace Harmony, the Jazz Combo and Jazz Band!
This annual event is part of the Cavalcade Jazz Festivals sponsored by the Cavalcade of Bands Association (CBA), comprised of more than 60 schools throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. The emphasis of Cavalcade Jazz Festivals is "Education Through Musical Involvement." It is their firm belief that controlled competition can be a positive educational tool wherein the process of music education can greatly enhance general education and life skills.
The Association provides each festival with a panel of three professional jazz musicians and educators. There are no first, second or third place bands at CBA festivals. Instead, following the performances, adjudicators assign each band a rating, which is announced at the end of the evening, along with special recognition of outstanding sections and soloists. Judges also record commentary with positive feedback and suggestions for improvement. The purpose is to have bands learn and improve from each Cavalcade appearance. Bands are judged using the following areas of skill evaluation: tone/blend/balance, interpretation, rhythm, precision, dynamics, intonation and improvisation. Best section awards are also given out for saxes, trombones, trumpets and rhythm.
To view a series of images from LMSD’s participating musical ensembles, click through the slideshow below!