Corridor Jazz Project

Christine Hilario, A&E Writer

Every year, FM 88.3 KCCK Jazz Radio Station brings together the top high school jazz bands of the Corridor area for one music-making event.

Through the Corridor JazzProject, 13 different high schooljazz bands get to record a song with a professional musician as a guest soloist. The recordings are then compiled onto a CD. At a later date, all of the bands and guest soloists perform at a concert to celebrate the CD’s release.

Senior alto saxophonist Katherine Surur has been a part of the Corridor Jazz Project for the last four years.

“We practice our tune during our normal rehearsals, and every once in a while, the guest artist will come in and rehearse the song with us,” Surur said. “We go to the Opus Café and record our piece. We usually play through it two to three times and then choose the best recording.”

This year, Xavier’s Jazz Band One worked with accordionist, Todd Munik and tenor saxophonist, Nolan Schroeder to record “Tonight, We Tango” by Rick Hirsch.

“It is very cool being able to perform with professionals,” Surur said. “Their music is always very well prepared and they often add little things to their parts that are not in the original recordings of the songs we play, which makes it feel special.”

This program started because KCCK was looking for a way to support and promote area high school jazz band programs. The General Manager of KCCK, Dennis Green, got the idea for the Corridor Jazz Project after attending a conference in Seattle.

“We knew we wanted to involve as many students as possible, and that it needed to be non-competitive,” Green said. “I pitched the concept to some area band directors and got a very positive response. A year later, we rolled it out!”

Since the Corridor Jazz Project is non-competitive, the bands do not have to focus on receiving a good rating from judges for their performance.

“The Corridor Jazz Project is just about having fun playing music and getting a glimpse as to what it is like to be an adult musician,” Green said. “Just because you do not major in music or continue studying it after high school does not mean you have to quit. We think staying involved in music for your whole life is a worthy activity.”

The CD’s will be available for purchase for $10 at Xavier after the Corridor Jazz Project concert, which takes place on Tuesday, March 10 at the Solon Center for the Performing Arts.