The student news site of Lake Stevens High School


The student news site of Lake Stevens High School


The student news site of Lake Stevens High School


Jazz bands win first place at Commencement Bay

On March 16, Lake Stevens Jazz bands won first place in both divisions, winning first overall at the Commencement Bay Jazz Festival at Fife High School
Debara Holmes
Jazz 1 and Jazz 2 take a commemorative photo after winning 1st overall.

Nineteen bands from all around Washington signed up to play, hoping they were prepared enough to compete and win.

Our Jazz band is broken up into two groups, Jazz 1 and Jazz 2, and consists of about 55 students total. 

Jazz 2 is the starter group for anybody who is passionate about playing jazz, whereas Jazz 1 is the select group that requires an audition. 

Jazz 1 and 2 have been preparing since the beginning of the school year, bettering their skills before festival season.

Jazz 2 played first, playing at 1:20pm; Jazz 1 played at 4:20pm, both directed by Neil Proff. 

Jazz 2 played three songs, “The Creole Love Call”, “In a Sentimental Mood” and “Miss Missouri”. Jazz 1 played three songs, “Shangri-La”, “Grace” and “Solid Old Man”

Soloists are the voice of each song, and because of this, it’s a crucial yet stressful job. Jazz 1 had nine soloists, Jazz 2 had five soloists.

“It’s like there’s a pit of fear sitting in my stomach and my legs turn to jello. It’s thrilling but also terrifying,” senior Rane Holmes, trumpet soloist said.

Both bands have played the same songs throughout the whole year, improving the smallest of details.

Holmes held a spot in both bands at one point and got to play all the songs and experience the improvements each band has made.

“It’s amazing to see the progress in everybody, and how we’ve grown throughout the year. I’m extremely proud of both bands,” Holmes said

The prior year they went, neither band did very well; however the year before that, Jazz 1 did fabulous, sadly Jazz 2 still needed major improvements.

Since our band director, Neil Proff, attended Fife High School, it is a tradition that the Jazz bands go to the Commencement Bay Jazz Festival every year.

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