Sunday, May 23, 2010

5/23/10 UPDATE


It is important that all JA Band members be at BAND CAMP July 26-30 and August 2-6.

Our drill writer, Lenny Westmoreland from Croatan HS, NC, along with guard writer Ashleigh Bradley, also from Croatan, will be at camp both weeks to create and teach the students the entire show.

Camp will be primarily in the JA gym, with percussion and some music rehearsals in the band hall or elsewhere on campus. All students need to be in the gym ready to start each morning at 8:30, in comfortable clothing including sneakers and socks. There will be a lunch break each day from 11:30 - 1:00, and the afternoon session will be 1:00 - 5:00.

The final day of camp, Friday, August 6, we invite families and friends to come to the gym at 4:30 for the Premiere Performance of the 2010 JA Band competition show, Between the Lines.

All students are entitled to four free private music lessons during the summer. Please contact the following instructors to coordinate the lessons:



PERCUSSION - Paul Heindl -

If you have any questions or any trouble coordinating the lessons, please contact me at


As noted in last week's newsletter, the JA Band will be traveling to Atlanta, GA October 29-31 to compete in the Bands of America Super Regional.

Here is the basic itinerary planned for the trip:

Friday, October 29 - Travel by motorcoach from JA to Atlanta, with a stop in Birmingham for lunch and shopping at the Riverchase Galleria Mall and a rehearsal at Sports Blast. We will have a group dinner before checking in at the Drury Inn & Suites - Atlanta Airport. (Note: BOA requires that our group hotel arrangements be made through the BOA Housing Bureau, because the event is a Super Regional.)

Saturday, October 30 - Breakfast at hotel (included), late morning performance time in the Georgia Dome, afternoon visit to the World of Coca-Cola, return to Georgia Dome for Super Regional Finals

Sunday, October 31 - Breakfast at hotel, visit Six Flags Over Georgia, return travel to JA

Look for further details about the trip, including costs, later this summer.


We are nearing maximum enrollment in the JA Dance Camp, to be held here on campus June 1-4, with about 30 students from schools around the area signed up.

There is still time to sign up for the Capital City Jazz Camp, to be held in the JA PAC on June 10 & 11. Click here for more information.

We still have several students who need to turn in their band uniforms. Please turn in all uniforms by Tuesday.


Please mark your calendars:

BAND CAMP - July 26-30 and August 2-6, 8:30 - 11:30 and 1:00 - 5:00 each day, JA campus

Saturday, October 2 - AREA BAND COMPETITION(S) - TBA
Saturday, October 16 - ALL DAY REHEARSAL
Saturday, October 23 - MAIS Marching Band Festival, JA
Friday - Sunday, October 29 - 31 - BOA Atlanta Super Regional Trip
This will be the final weekly update for the school year. We will send out occasional emails and post updates during the summer when information becomes available.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

5/16/10 UPDATE


Thank you to all band families who attended the Awards Ceremony on Thursday, and congratulations to all JA Band members for their accomplishments this year. The future looks bright for the JA Band Program.


Drill writer Lenny Westmoreland is busy working on the 2010 Jackson Academy Marching Band competition show, which will be titled "Between the Lines" and feature the music of the classic rock band Led Zeppelin.

After consideration of the schedule, we have decided to travel to the BOA Atlanta Super Regional, which will be held on October 30, instead of the Indianapolis regional the week following. Traveling to Atlanta will decrease travel time and expense and also allow interested older students to audition for the All-State Lions Band on November 6.

Here are the important dates to mark on your calendars for Fall 2010:

JA DANCE CAMP - June 1-4, 1:00 - 5:30 each day
CAPITAL CITY JAZZ CAMP - June 10 & 11, 1:00 - 5:00 & 6:30 - 8:30 each day

BAND CAMP - July 26-30 and August 2-6, 8:30 - 11:30 and 1:00 - 5:00 each day, JA campus

Saturday, October 2 - AREA BAND COMPETITION(S) - TBA
Saturday, October 16 - ALL DAY REHEARSAL
Saturday, October 23 - MAIS Marching Band Festival, Jackson Academy Raider Field
Friday - Sunday, October 29 - 31 - BOA Atlanta Super Regional Trip

A full calendar for the year will be distributed when the schedule is finalized in the next few weeks.


All horn and percussion students need to come to the band hall tomorrow (Monday) during the school day to be measured for a new uniform jacket.

Also, if your student has not yet turned in his or her band uniform, please have them do so this week.


In the interest of making the experience available to more students around the area, we have decided to shorten the Capital City Jazz Camp from five days to two, and decrease the price to $25. The camp will now be only Thursday and Friday, June 10 & 11, from 1:00 - 5:00 and 6:30 - 8:30 each day. We will still have the same great local jazz musicians and teachers as instructors, and the camp will finish with a concert for families and friends at 7:30 on June 11. All camp activities are in the JA Performing Arts Center.

Note: if you have already sent payment for the full camp fee, that check will be returned to you. If your student would like to attend the two-day camp, please send a check for $25, payable to Jackson Academy.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

5/09/10 UPDATE

Congratulations to the members of the Jackson Academy Concert & Sixth Grade Bands for their fine performances at the Spring Concert on Tuesday.

The Sixth Grade Band received standing ovations for both of their performances, in front of the elementary student body in the morning and at the evening concert as well. We are very pleased with the great strides these students have made since the beginning of the year and look forward to having many of them continue as JA Band members.

We received many positive comments about the high school band's performance also, and everyone seemed to enjoy the unique collaboration with JA Speech and Drama teacher Stacy Overstreet and her students.

A few photos from the concert, thanks to Wendy Hutchins:


Thank you to all the students for their hard work, dedication to improvement, and fine performances throughout this school year.

Special kudos to our four Senior students, Will Commarato, John Humphreys, Kevin Lowery, & Jonathan Sandlin, for their leadership by example and outstanding musicianship. These four young men have "stayed the course" as JA Band members over the years with pride and commitment. Our four JA Band Seniors:

And thank you to Karen Humphreys for sharing the following. Can you name the students pictured in this glimpse into the past?

Please take a few minutes to look through more photos from the concerts at the following links:

JA Concert Band Spring Concert Photo Album

JA Sixth Grade Band Spring Concert Photo Album

The final event for the school year will be the Awards Ceremony this Thursday, May 13, in the JA Performing Arts Center. All JA Band students, families, and friends are invited to attend. All students, from Sixth through Twelfth grades, will receive individual recognition, and special awards will be presented as well.

The festivities will begin with cookies and punch served in the PAC lobby beginning at 6:30 pm. At 7:00, we will move to the auditorium for the presentation of awards and a retrospective slide show.

Student attire for the Awards Ceremony Thursday will be smart casual.


All students should turn in band uniforms and band-owned instruments during class time this week.

We have designed and will be ordering new uniform jackets and color guard uniforms over the summer. Student measurements will be taken before school is out. A sneak preview of the new jacket, modeled by Grady Fisher:

Please continue to watch for JA Band email announcements and blog updates throughout the summer for information about free private music lessons, clinics, band camp, and schedule updates.

JA Band Program Spring Awards Ceremony - May 13, 6:30 pm, JA Performing Arts Center

Jackson Academy Dance Camp - June 1-4, 12:00 - 5:30 each day

Capital City Jazz Camp - June 7-11, 1-5 & 6:30 - 9:00 each day

JA BAND CAMP - July 26 - 30 & August 2-6, 8:30 - 11:30 & 1:00 - 5:00 each day

Thank you for your support throughout the year, and we hope to see everyone Thursday evening in the PAC.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

5/02/10 UPDATE

Please join us for the JA Band Program Spring Concert this Tuesday, May 4, at 7:00 pm in the Jackson Academy Performing Arts Center.

The evening's performances will begin with the JA Sixth Grade Band at 7:00. These students will also perform Tuesday morning for the elementary student body during the school day, at 9:00 am.

The JA Concert Band will take the stage at 7:30 for Zeppelin and the Allmans - Words & Music. We hope everyone will enjoy this unique collaboration between the Band and JA Speech and Theater teacher Stacy Overstreet and her students.

Founded in Jacksonville, FL, in 1969 and once based in Macon, GA, the Allman Brothers Band has been called the "architects of Southern rock." They also incorporate elements blues, jazz, and country music, and their live performances include jam-band style improvisation and instrumental songs.

Considered primarily a heavy metal or hard rock band, Led Zeppelin was founded about the same time in England. Even thirty years after disbanding following drummer John Bonham's death in 1980, the band continues to be held in high regard for their artistic achievements, commercial success, and broad influence.

Tuesday's concert will also be the final performance as JA Band members for our four seniors, Will Commarato, John Humphreys, Kevin Lowery, & Jonathan Sandlin. These seniors have had an amazing six years with the JA Band, including a Class A National Championship, Regional Championships at Atlanta, St. Louis, & San Antonio, an incredible Concert Band tour via Amtrak to Chicago, and much recognition as individual student musicians.

Please invite family and friends for what should be a rocking event in a wonderful facility. There will be no admission charge for the concert.


On Thursday, May 13, the JA Band Program will hold its Spring Awards Ceremony. This is in lieu of the banquet which has been held in years past. The evening will begin with cookies and punch in the PAC lobby at 6:30. At 7:00 we will begin the Awards Ceremony in the PAC Auditorium, which will include individual recognition for every band member, special awards, and a retrospective slideshow prepared by Melani Hutchins. All band families, from Sixth Grade through Twelfth, are invited. There will be no charge for the event.