This February, junior Henry Solomon will take a little time off from the Academy to perform with some of the country’s finest jazz musicians at the 2013 Grammy Camp — Jazz Session in Los Angeles. The third year music major typically performs on alto saxophone but he successfully auditioned on baritone sax for a coveted spot in the highly competitive ensemble.
“Selection into the Grammy Band is considered to be the highest honor bestowed upon high school jazz musicians,” said Bill Sears, instructor of jazz studies and saxophone at Interlochen Arts Academy. “This band is made up of only the finest high school jazz musicians from throughout the country. It is an elite group: these students are the future of jazz.”
Through their rehearsals and performances, Henry and other selected students will find themselves at the center of the music industry’s premiere event. “It is very exciting to know that I am going to be playing with such a talented group of musicians at the Grammy Awards,” said Henry.
"Since 1993, Grammy Camp — Jazz Session has provided students with an extraordinary musical experience that brings to life the mission of the Grammy Foundation: to foster the next generation of music and its makers," said Neil Portnow, President/CEO of the Grammy Foundation and The Recording Academy. "While they're here, these young artists will experience a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity when they play with their peers as well as with Grammy-nominated and Grammy-winning artists at a range of programs during Grammy Week."
Participating musicians will perform at various events including: an appearance at Grammy In The Schools Live! and A Celebration Of Music and Education, sponsored by Ford Motor Company Fund and the Starkey Hearing Foundation. The group will offer another public performance at Spaghettini Fine Dining & Entertainment with a special guest artist on February 7. Grammy Camp — Jazz Session members will also will attend the 55th Annual Grammy Awards on February 10 as guests of The Recording Academy and will perform at the Grammy Celebration after-party.
The Grammy ensembles will be directed by leading jazz musicians including Justin DiCioccio of the Manhattan School of Music, Dr. Ron McCurdy of the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music and Dr. Leila Heil of the University of Colorado, Boulder.
On February 8 and 9, the young musicians will again record at the legendary Capitol Studios & Mastering in Hollywood, California, courtesy of the EMI Music Group. Grammy Jazz Ensembles albums from 2007–2012 are available for purchase at online music outlets such as Amazon, iTunes, Napster and Rhapsody.
The Grammy Camp — Jazz Session selectees are also eligible for more than $2 million in college scholarships made possible through the Grammy Foundation's college partners: Berklee College of Music, Manhattan School of Music, the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music, and the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music.
While the experience promises to be a demanding one, Sears expects Henry to rise to occasion, making the most of an incredible opportunity. “Henry is an extremely gifted jazz saxophonist who plays with passion, creativity and a wonderful sense of style and maturity. During his three years at the Academy he has progressed quickly, and his dedication in the practice room has revealed a special talent with an aptitude toward improvisation. What sets Henry apart from other students with similar skills is that he swings like mad!”
Henry is the sixth Academy student to earn this honor since the program began in 1993. Previous recipients include: Matt Brewer (IAA 98-01), Anja Parks (IAA 03-04), Ross Mintzer (IAA 03-05), Ross Laurent (IAA 03-05) and Aaron Johnson (IAA 07-08).