Jazz Band Has Too Many Students


"Upper class band students should feel proud, for their legacy and music at Big Sky that they are passing down to the Freshman" Jesse Dochnahl 2018 Photo courtesy of Jesse Dochnahl

Jazz Band award for Trumpet section last year
Photo courtesy of Jesse Dochnahl
Photo courtesy of Jesse Dochnahl
Jazz Band award for Trombone section last year
Photo courtesy of Jesse Dochnahl
“Upper class band students should feel proud, for their legacy and music at Big Sky that they are passing down to the Freshman” Jesse Dochnahl 
Photo courtesy of Jesse Dochnahl


By Angel Williams

As the room goes dark and the stage lights up, you can see shiny, metal  objects. No wait, they aren’t just objects. They are instruments, silver and gold. Trumpets, saxophones, clarinets, flutes, trombones, drums, tubas. The musicians are under the lights, which bring the shine. The crowd grows quiet as the Conductor walks up to the mic by the podium. After the Conductor  is done talking he turns around and faces the musicians. They nod their head, raise their arms, and with a single movement of his arm the band starts playing the lovely sounds that the audience came for.

Bands are a very important part of any middle school, high school, college, and musician’s life. From performing in concerts to marching on a field, each musician in the world is important to the audience that is in front of them.

Jesse Dochnahl, Big Sky’s Band Instructor, believes that this year is a huge year for our band, with more freshman players then before, plus having more courses for musicians to take. “It’s a big year, we have fifty-five freshman, and that’s a record number,” He shares with a smile and slight chuckle, “It’s very exciting for the future of the band, we now offer a percussion class, a second Jazz band class, and provide specific instructors in those areas.”

Dochnahl isn’t the only one who is looking forward to this year. Junior Ethan Smith, a bass player, also looks forward to what this year has in store. “I look forward to what this school year and Jazz band holds for me.”

When is Jazz Band?

This year there are two classes for Jazz Band, unlike previous years.“Jazz 2 is during zero period, that’s our training period,” Dochnahl shares. “For most people it starts before school. Jazz 1 is during 8th period.”

For Jazz Band, one of the requirements is to audition, but only for one of the class periods. The other is open to anyone. “Jazz Band 1 requires a audition to get placed in the class. But Jazz Band 2 just requires you to show up and be a dedicated musician,” Dochnahl says. “Oh, and you have to have it on your schedule. So register and then show up.”

Smith only joined the Jazz Band this year and has only been playing  the bass for a short time. “I’m brand new to all of this,” he shares. “I’ve only been in Jazz for about a month and I’ve also only have played bass for roughly three months.”


What should Big Sky look forward to this year?

Senior Sierra Cornwell feels that this year’s Jazz Band will bring great music to its listeners. “We are just kind of making music and having fun. We are most likely going to the Jazz festival again,” she says. “Last year we got the best section award for Trumpets and Trombone, we also got Best Soloist from our Trombone player Sean Stineford, we also get critiqued.”

Junior Savannah Holgate has only been in Jazz Band this year. She is expecting to have a really good year  with the Jazz 2 class. “I expect for us to be really good, like obviously we aren’t as experienced as Jazz 1, but it gives a lot of kids the opportunity to actually try out  other instruments, if you already play one. It also gives the opportunity to just learn Jazz”

“Big Sky should expect good music. So far the music we have picked out have been really fun, while some have been challenging,” Cornwell shares.

Holgate adds, “They all should expect greatness, I would also recommend joining Jazz. It’s really fun.”