High school student wins spot in all-state jazz ensemble

BAY VILLAGE, Ohio — A senior Bay Village High School trumpeter made the 2023 Ohio Music Education Association (OMEA) all-state jazz ensemble for the second year in a row.

What do you want to know

  • The Ohio Music Education Association annually selects the top high school music band students to perform in their all-state jazz ensemble
  • In northeast Ohio, a Bay High School student prepares to perform for the second year in a row
  • Only 4-5 trumpeters from across the state make up the ensemble
  • The show will take place in Columbus from February 2-4, 2023

Adam Ward, a senior from Bay High School in northeast Ohio, has a few hobbies. Playing the piano, hiking and studying Japanese are just a few, but one of his favorite hobbies is playing the trumpet, something he started doing when he was around 10. year.

“I love doing, one making music for others and two being in the music community,” Ward said. “Everyone who plays music around me is so talented. And it’s so inspiring.

It’s a hobby turned passion because he said music is an escape.

“That brings me to a really good place,” Ward said. “And that calms me down. It excites me.

Adam Ward, Senior, Bay High School. (Spectrum News 1/Taylor Bruck)

Ward is in the marching band, symphony orchestra, jazz band and pit band and some days he practices before, during and even after school. He is also part of the Cleveland Youth Wind Symphony, a group that meets every Saturday and will perform in Scotland and England next summer.

Those long hours of training are paying off. This year he was selected for the 2023 Ohio Music Education Association’s All-State Jazz Ensemble. Only four to five trumpeters from Ohio earn a spot each year, and this is the second year he’s been selected.

“I’m really happy, I’m amazed, it’s so many feelings at once,” Ward said. “It’s an amazing opportunity for me, and I’m really happy.”

To create this ensemble, students audition alongside top high school musicians from across the state, which brings together the best of the best to perform at the OMEA conference in February 2023.

Darren Allen, Group Principal, Bay High School. (Spectrum News 1/Taylor Bruck)

“It’s impressive and, you know, a testament to his hard work,” said Darren Allen, the band’s principal at Bay High School.

Accomplishments like this are something band managers like Allen seek out.

“That’s why I do it, isn’t it?” Allen said. And Adam certainly does.”

For Ward, music is something that brings him joy, and he said he performs in hopes of bringing the same joy to others.

“I’m so excited to play for others,” he said. “I hope the members, like the younger ones, watch us play that day and say to themselves, wow, this is something I want to do. Because it’s the same experience that I I had when I watched jazz bands and bands when I was a kid. I was like, this is what I want to do. So I really hope we can provide good inspiration to others.

The All-State Jazz Ensemble will rehearse in January, then perform a concert at the Ohio Music Education Association (OMEA) convention, taking place in Columbus, February 2-4, 2023.

All performances are free to the public. For more information, click here.

About Roy B. Westling

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