At John Adams High School, we have two excellent Jazz Bands that work with each director following the marching band season. Jazz I and Jazz II is comprised of students in grades 9-12 and meets before school from 7:45AM-8:45AM, Monday through Friday. Both Jazz Bands work on literature relative to their technical and musical ability level and are challenging for each student in the ensemble in different ways. Students develop many skills including improvisation, analysis, ear training, and performance throughout the semester.
Both groups have opportunities for performances, contests, and clinics with master musicians and educators throughout the year. John Adams Bands also annually hosts Jazz Soundsations, a two day district-wide jazz festival that invites clinicians to work with participating middle schools and all South Bend high school jazz ensembles. The festival ends with a final performance of all groups in the evening on the last day of the event. At the end of the year the band also hosts Big Band Bash, one of the largest fundraisers organized by the John Adams Band Boosters. This event features Jazz I and Jazz II, along with other participating South Bend middle school jazz ensembles, while our wonderful patrons dance the night away!
While the John Adams Bands has hosted events at the school, the groups have also performed at multiple festivals in state, including those hosted by Ball State University, Purdue University, the Indiana State School Music Association (ISSMA), to name a few. Furthermore, the Jazz Bands have traveled out of state, including New York in 2007 and to Michigan for the Western Michigan University Jazz Festival.
In 2020, Jazz I performed at the ISSMA Jazz Festival and earned a Gold Rating in Group I.