MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Escape the cold with some hot jazz performed by some of Minnesota’s best high school bands at the 2nd Annual Winter Jazz Blast.

The non-competitive festival gives high school jazz bands the opportunity to receive critique from professional adjudicators, attend clinics and master classes, perform in from of their peers and record in McNally Smith’s top-flight studio complex.

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The festival culminates in an early evening concert at 5:30 p.m. on Jan. 18 in the History Theatre, which is located on McNally Smith’s downtown St. Paul campus.

“This event is a fantastic opportunity for high school students interested in jazz to learn from great clinicians and educators, as well as from one another,” McNally Smith Brass and Woodwinds Department Head Pete Whitman said. “It’s also a rare chance for the jazz-loving public to see and hear some truly world-class musicians perform in an intimate environment.”

Admission is $5 per student, $15 per adult and $13 for Twin Cities Jazz Society Members. Tickets are available here.

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Though the festival is non-competitive, several outstanding high school soloists are awarded scholarships to McNally Smith’s Summer Jazz Workshop and will get the chance to perform with JazzMN Orchestra at the evening concert.

Check out last year’s performance by the Minnetonka High School Jazz 1 below.


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