The 2019 Cortland Jamfest was a rocking success! Jamfest is a music festival featuring modern and popular music that happens on three separate stages and is an opportunity for students at Cortland Junior and High School to show off their musical talent, beyond the large traditional ensembles such as choir, band and orchestra. Over the years, Jamfest grew from being a simple concert at the Youth Bureau, to a large show with multiple stages that have performances going on simultaneously.
The various showcases of talent that were at Jamfest ranged from senior high school vocalists, to student organized bands and soloist.
Music department chair Jen Rafferty said, “With Jamfest, we wanted to include all students that were interested. Each set was 20 minutes long, staggered across three stages, which allowed performances to go on simultaneously. This year, our Modern Band program was an important part of Jamfest as they released their new album, “Life As We Know It” on the same day. This student written album was written around the central question ‘How can music be used to inspire social change?’ The ultimate goal is that the music department showcases students in an alternative way that may be different from the regular concert season.”
Senior Tsai Lewis participated in Jamfest this year. Tsai said, “I was part of the band called “prodigy” and we performed a set list. It was so much fun watching everybody play their songs that they wrote. It was so much fun going to such a cool event showing off people's talents and different genres. My song that I performed was from the album, "Life As We Know It" and called “Not Your Time” and “I’m Holding On.” This is by far one of my top memories of high school. Hanging out with people that have common interests is super fun.”
Jamfest was a huge success and the music department will release the date of Jamfest 2020 in the fall!