Jazz Ensembles

The Benton Central Jazz Bands were created to provide an opportunity for students to grow and expand their musical talents. These groups blend a variety of grades and talents into three extra-curricular performance ensembles.

Jazz, Inc. is the upper level Jazz ensemble for students who have experience playing Jazz, and is geared towards High School students. Jazz, Inc. rehearses after school on Mondays during the 2nd & 3rd nine weeks. Additional rehearsals may be required as the group nears select performances. This ensemble features only traditional Jazz "Big Band" instrumentation: Saxophones, Trumpets, Trombones, Piano, Drum Set, Guitar, and Bass.

Jazz Lab is our second Jazz Ensemble, and includes only High School students. This group was formed in the 2017-2018 school year and is for students who may or may not have played Jazz before, and welcomes all instrumentation. Students who are learning a second instrument will usually be placed in this ensemble as well. Jazz Lab rehearses after school on Wednesdays during the 2nd & 3rd nine weeks.   

Jazz Two was formed in the 2015-2016 school year due to the high level of interest in performing Jazz music among our Junior High Students. This group meets during club/homeroom time every Friday. It is open to students who are new to Jazz or have played before. Jazz Two also welcomes any/all instrumentation.

The Jazz Bands perform each year at the Spring Fine Arts Festival. They also travel to the county elementary schools in a recruiting effort to build the music program at Benton Central. To further showcase, they will also perform at selected Jazz festivals in January, February, & March. In the past, Jazz, Inc. has participated in Purdue Jazz Festival & the ISSMA Jazz contest. The Benton Central Band Department also holds an annual Jazz Cafe' that features many soloists and a lot of great music. This event typically occurs in February at the historic Fowler Theater.

Recent Jazz Repertoire
Big Noise from Winnetka (Haggart & Bauduc/arr. Lavender)
A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square (arr. Tomaro)
Backlash (Pickett/arr. Kamuf)
Skylark (Carmichael/arr. Wolpe)
Groovin' High (Gillespie/arr. Stitzel)
Five Spot After Dark (Golson/arr. Story)
Tango for Jam Jam (Smith)
Watermelon Man (Hancock/arr. Sharp)
Gentle One (Yorke-Slader)
Things Ain't What They Used To Be (Ellington/arr. Sigler)
Groovin' Hard (Menza/arr. Blair)
'Round Midnight (Williams and Monk/arr. Smukal)
Grooved Pavement (Lopez)
A Night in Tunisia (Gillespie/arr. Sweeney)
Act Your Age (Goodwin/arr. Blair)
The Shadow of Your Smile (Mandel/arr. Phillippe)
Blue Charlie Brown (Guaraldi/arr. Murtha)
Embraceable You (Gershwin/arr. Phillippe)
Blues in Hoss Flat (Basie/arr. Taylor)
Minnie the Moocher (Calloway/arr. Ford)
                                                     Killer Joe (Golson/arr. Sweeney)
                                                     Big Spender - from "Sweet Charity" (Coleman/arr. Stitzel)
                                                     Sing, Sing, Sing (Prima/arr. Cook)
                                                     Chameleon (Hancock/arr. Lopez)
                                                     Blue Train (Coltrane/arr. Sweeney)
                                                     Satin Doll (Ellington/arr. Sweeney)