Branches of Band: Jazz Edition

Jazz Band is a musical group at Antioch Community High School who compete and perform.


Lena De Vore

Jazz Band continues to work hard for upcoming performances.

There are many groups in the music department at Antioch; one in particular is Jazz Band. Jazz Band plays many genres of music and consists mainly of rhythm and horn sections.

Johnathan Untch is the director of the Jazz Band at Antioch Community High School; he has been leading the group for seven years. 

“It’s different in that there are less people and it’s a smaller group,” Untch said. “I only have four trumpets, four trombones, five saxophones and then a rhythm section. Jazz Band is all by audition, so it’s all my top players. It’s a really dedicated group so we can do more advanced music.”

Jazz Band competes in a few competitions each year, as well as performances at school assemblies and other events.

“Usually we will go to one or two competitions per year,” Untch said. “We go to the North Shore Jazz Festival and Jazz in the Meadows. A few years ago, our second jazz band earned third place at the North Shore Jazz Festival. It was totally unexpected and pretty cool.”

Jazz Band consists of a very diverse and talented group of musicians. The band is a place for people to express their creativity through their instruments and songs. There is also a lot of variety with the type of music that the band plays.

“One of the things that intrigues me about Jazz Band is that you can do a ton of different genres,” Untch said. “You can do funk, rock, gospel, jazz and blues. I feel like that kind of ensemble actually lends itself to the broadest array of music. I also find more people know the stuff we’re playing because we’ll get to do movie themes, TV themes and more pop charts.” 

This year Jazz Band has set many goals for themselves, one being to continue to improve and expand their musical talent. They are very excited for what this year has in store for them.