It’s a tradition. The John Coltrane Youth Jazz Workshop opens the Coltrane Jazzfest every year. For the 9th annual festival kickoff, they will perform on Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019.

The performing group is a result of the Coltrane Jazz Workshop for Youth (JCJW), an annual summer camp sponsored each year by the High Point United Arts Council.  It offers rising 7th through 12th graders an introduction to jazz history and jazz theory in the city where Coltrane grew up and learned to play, taught by educators and performers who are highly regarded as jazz specialists.

The workshop is led by Wally West, Administrative Director and member of the Piedmont Triad Jazz Orchestra  (PTJO) and the Director of Jazz Studies at Gardner-Webb University. The faculty for the workshop includes musicians who teach and perform throughout the state.  Every year, the group of young people surprise the audience with a demonstration of what they have learned by delivering an energetic, robust and mature sound.