The Carroll Dragons are becoming popular finalists at the annual Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Band Competition in New York City. The contest, hosted May 8-10 at the Lincoln Center, was the third time Carroll Jazz was invited to participate. This year, the Dragons were the only high school in the state to be invited to play and the only school to be named a finalist three times. The Dragons were invited to Ellington in 2007, 2010 and again in 2014.
This year more than 2,700 U.S. high schools became members of the Essentially Ellington program, 94 schools submitted audition recordings, and the Carroll Jazz Orchestra was one of only 15 selected by blind audition to compete in the finals.
Director David Lown said the students turned in their best performance of the year, bringing down the house down with a standing ovation. Carroll Jazz received awards for Outstanding Brass and Outstanding Vocals (Chris Weisberg). The event was streamed live on Saturday, May 10 and will remain posted here for the next few weeks: http://new.livestream.com/jazz/ee2014/videos/50548710.
The band also received additional media coverage from local PBS station, KERA News. Click here to listen to the report. Earlier this spring while attending a clinic at Carroll High School for area jazz students, University of North Texas Jazz Studies Professor, Steve Wiest spoke about the talent of the Carroll Jazz band. Click here to watch the video.