Monterey Jazz Festival, a leader in jazz education since its inception in 1958, announces the ninth annual Next Generation Jazz Festival presented by the Monterey Jazz Festival, featuring the nation’s most talented middle school, high school, conglomerate school, and college jazz musicians and vocalists.
The Next Generation Jazz Festival will take place in downtown Monterey April 5 to 7.
The Next Generation Jazz Festival evolved initially from Monterey Jazz Festival’s California High School Jazz Competition, started in 1971.
Now named the Next Generation Jazz Festival Presented by Monterey Jazz Festival, the weekend salute to the future of jazz has expanded to include middle school, conglomerate school, and college level musicians and vocalists.
The Next Generation Jazz Festival is now accepting applications from middle school, high school, and college big bands; from high school and college level conglomerate bands; from open combos; and from high school combos and vocal jazz ensembles through Jan. 18.
Application forms may be downloaded at the Monterey Jazz Festival’s Website, montereyjazzfestival.org. The application process is free of charge, as is participation in the prestigious event.
Next Generation Jazz Festival finalists are selected through recorded auditions reviewed and ranked by faculty from the Berklee College of Music, and will include 12 big bands, six combos, and eight vocal ensembles in the high school division. Six college-level big bands and six college vocal ensembles will also be selected, in addition to six conglomerate and six middle school big bands, and six open combos.
Specially invited groups will also perform. In 2012, more than 60 groups from across the United States, Japan and Australia attended the Next Generation Jazz Festival.
The high school, conglomerate school, and college divisions of the Next Generation Jazz Festival are open to superior rated big bands, combos and vocal ensembles.
The top big bands, combo and vocal ensemble will win cash awards and be invited to perform at the 56th Annual Monterey Jazz Festival, Sept. 20 to 22.
Auditions will also be held for chairs in Monterey Jazz Festival’s Next Generation Jazz Orchestra, which is slated to tour at jazz venues and festivals domestically and abroad, as well as be a featured Sunday Arena performance at the Monterey Jazz Festival.
The Next Generation Jazz Festival Presented by Monterey Jazz Festival also includes a big band composition competition, open to high school composers.
Judged by college faculty from leading music schools across the country, the winning composer will receive the Gerald Wilson Award and a cash prize, with the winning composition to be performed by the Next Generation Jazz Orchestra on the final day of the 56th Annual Monterey Jazz Festival, Sunday, Sept.22, on the Jimmy Lyons Stage in the arena.
All Next Generation Jazz Festival events and activities — from Friday night’s Kick-Off Concert, featuring Monterey Jazz Festival’s 2013 Artist-In-Residence Joe Lovano, through Saturday and Sunday’s High School Jazz Competition — are free of charge and open to the public.
The festival will also conduct clinics, workshops, jam sessions and auditions in the heart of Monterey, with music to be performed at the Monterey Conference Center, as well as on auxiliary stages at the host Portola Hotel, Fisherman’s Wharf and the Museum of Monterey.
Interested schools and students should visit montereyjazzfestival.org for instructions on how to apply to the Next Generation Jazz Festival. Major funding for the Next Generation Jazz Festival comes from the Surdna Foundation and generous individuals.