RANDOLPH, NJ- On May 22, The Randolph District’s Jazz Bands’ season culminated with the 40th Annual Randolph Jazz Concert. This concert featured the RMS and RHS Jazz Bands, in addition to renowned tenor saxophone virtuoso, Ralph Bowen.
Off the bat, there was a full house; the Randolph High School Auditorium was packed. David Inhof, Supervisor of Visual and Performing Arts and Music Education, opened the show, reminiscing on the past years, expressing wonderment over the 40-year mark.
The opening piece, “Moanin’,” by Bobby Timmons, started the concert off dynamic. All of the bands united as one to perform this classic jazz piece.
The first individual group to perform was the RMS Jazz Ensemble. This ensemble, despite missing its conductor, Kristen Siebenhuhner, followed through with an exceptional performance. Mr. Tom Murphy filled in Siebenhuhner’s shoes in stride.
The RMS Jazz Ensemble, ended with a lively rendition of “Poker Face” by Lady Gaga, delighting the crowd.
Next, led by Tom Davidson, the RHS Jazz Ensemble II took center stage. They opened with “Tiger of San Pedro,” and closed with a unique rendition of “When the Saints Go Marching In.”
In between songs, Davidson, a jokester himself, was presented with a joke book by the ensemble, in the hopes up “stepping up his game,” and improving his joking aptitude.
After the Jazz Ensemble II came the Jazz Ensemble I, directed by Dave Miller. They opened strong with “I Can’t Stop Loving You.” “Goodbye Pork Pie Hat” featured RHS senior and Mayo Performing Arts Center Student of the Month, Zach Sanders on the alto sax.
Sanders says of the Jazz Program, “Every year, I'm awestruck by the incredible talent that our jazz program displays, and at the incredible dedication of our directors; this year was no different. It was an honor to perform with all of my talented fellow musicians, and it's almost impossible to believe that the year is over.”
As a grateful gesture to their director, the RHS Jazz Ensemble I presented Miller with a gift certificate, a shrimp salad, and a sentimental storybook.
Throughout each ensemble’s performance, Ralph Bowen interpolated himself, enhancing each piece. His talented persona exuded, and his talent is one for the younger generations to want to emulate.
Finally, at the end of the concert, all of the ensembles united one last time to perform “Vehicle,” closing energetically.
Each soloist flaunted their talent, and complemented the groups as a whole, proving their adeptness. The 41st Annual Randolph Jazz will have a tough act to follow.