A swinging 18-piece big band, led by Marianne May
The mission of Jazz Community is to uphold its commitment to founder Bill May's original vision of education and entertainment through the uniquely American language of Jazz. To this end, Jazz Community is dedicated to preserving the music of the jazz masters. Jazz Community seeks to expand the cultural landscape of big band jazz by showcasing new works created by Chicago area composers and arrangers.
In memory and tribute to Bill May, who touched so many lives as a music educator and mentor, Jazz Community raises monies annually for the Bill May Jazz Education Fund. Each year, one or more deserving students is awarded scholarships toward their attendance at summer jazz camp. Past recipients of the scholarship are listed in our honor roll.
Consideration will be limited to high school sophomores and juniors, in good academic standing, who are participating in their school's jazz program. (In rare circumstances, outstanding freshman who meet all other criteria may also be considered.) The focus on "mid" classmen is to help ensure that the benefits to the student of attending jazz camp can be expanded upon through continued participation in their high school's jazz program.
Additional requirements for consideration are:
- A letter of recommendation by the student's jazz band instructor or private music teacher, with focus on the student's leadership skills
- Student's year in high school
- Student's current GPA
- Student's instrument
- An essay by the student, briefly explaining why they should be considered for the scholarship, what they hope to gain from the summer jazz camp experience, and how they plan to share their experience with fellow students the following year
- An audition may also be required, to be determined on an as-needed basis
An application is available for download. Completed applications should be mailed to Jazz Community and must be postmarked by April 1. If you are interested in applying for the scholarship, or donating to the Bill May Jazz Education Fund, contact Jazz Community for more details.
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