Get into jazz with the Magic City Jazz Festival

For the 16th year in a row, the Magic City Jazz Festival is returning on Feb. 9 for a concert filled with variety, talent, and jazz. It will take place at Ann Nicole Nelson Hall at 7 p.m. with tickets costing $8 for ages 13 and up, $5 for 7 to 12, and kids 6 and under are free.

The concert will host a large group of different bands with Minot performers being jazz bands from Jim Hill Middle School, Erik Ramstad Middle School, Central Campus and Magic City, the MSU Jazz Band and The Swing Band of Minot. Other schools’ bands participating in the concert will be Glenburn High School Jazz Combo, Surrey Junior High Jazz Band, Surrey Senior High Jazz Band, Williston Middle School Jazz Band, Williston Middle School Jazz Percussion ensemble, and Wolford High School Jazz Band.

With so many performers, it is expected to be a fun concert with a large variety of different songs, such as “St. Louis Blues,” “St. Thomas,” “Spring Can Really Hang You Up The Most,” and “In A Pinch” to be performed.

For the performance, two guests artists will be performing alongside the Swing Band of Minot, Alex Graham from Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn., and Ryan Christianson from Chicago.

Graham is currently an assistant professor of saxophone at Belmont University and has a doctorate in jazz studies from Eastmen School of Music in Rochester, N.Y. He is internationally recognized and has both composed and performed all around. He has a variety of CDs released, with his most recent making various top-ten lists.

Christianson is a trombonist who was born in Grand Forks. He has a B.M. in trombone performance from the University of Minnesota and he uses his time working as a clinician and as a freelancer in Chicago. He has performed with lots of groups from brass bands and big bands to chamber groups and symphony orchestras. He has performed across the country with different universities as a clinician, like Graham.

Local clinicians who are working with the groups for the concert are Cordell Bugbee, who is a retired Minot Public Schools band teacher, and Joe Alme, who is a retired band director at MSU and a retired director of the International Music Camp.