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Generations of Jazz Led by Washington Alum

Posted: Tuesday, March 13th, 2018 at 6:25 am
Author: Sally Y. Hart - KCII News

A Washington High School alum will be showing students in Washington that careers in music are possible, focusing on jazz.

Christopher Merz graduated from Washington in 1982 and is now the
director of the University of Northern Iowa Jazz Band. He is bringing the jazz band he directs to meet with local students in workshops and have an evening performance, “When I was growing up in Washington, the opportunities for a life in jazz or a life in music seemed so remote. It seemed like that’s for kids from Chicago, or that’s for kids from New York, or Los Angeles, you know, urban centers, that’s not for kids from the cornfield. And what I want kids to see is that my band, which is made up almost entirely of Iowa natives, is the equal of any of the regional jazz bands.”

Merz would like to thank his former teacher, Gary McCurdy, for spearheading the effort to bring the concert together and for the guidance over the years. The Generations of Jazz in Washington concert will begin at 7 p.m. March 22nd at the Washington High School, it is $10 for students and $15 for adults.