By Per Peterson
Tracy Area High School band director Brittani Klaverkamp is getting a chance to share a passion of hers with her students.
On March 1, the University of Minnesota-Morris Jazz Group will perform a concert for grades 7-12. The performance will take place from 1:30-2:15 p.m. in the gymnasium.
“I’m very excited to be hosting the band,” Klaverkamp said. “Jazz rehearsal was always the highlight of my day in school.”
Klaverkamp hopes the UMM jazz group’s performance can act as a stepping stone for bigger things at TAHS. She hopes to start a jazz band next year for high school students. With that in mind, a question-and-answer sessions for band members is planned so the students can ask about what it’s like playing in a jazz band, or about jazz in general.
“I know that many times students shy away from participating in music ensembles at universities if they aren’t planning on studying music,” she said. “This is also a good opportunity for current seniors to ask what it’s like participating in a music ensemble as a non-music major, whether it’s jazz band, concert band, or choir. Morris’ jazz band is a great example because they rely on non-music majors to have a successful program.”
Klaverkamp said jazz is America’s true art form and that much music today wouldn’t even exist if jazz didn’t have the kind of impact it had on musicians. In that respect, she said it’s important for people to see where those jazz roots came from.
“I also think that attending live performances is an important part of a music education,” she said. “I try to let students know when there is a concert happening in the area, and this was a chance for me to bring one to them.”
The public is welcomed to attend the concert.
The high school gym will be available after the concert for regular activities.