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SCPA Students Slated to Compete in Frankfurt, Germany after being Named Best Teen Band USA at School Jam USA!

Jazz Avenue San Diego, CA  (January 24, 2012) –   Five SCPA students competed  and won  “Best Teen Band” in the U.S. at the National Association of Music Merchants’ (NAMM) third annual School JamUSA festival in Downtown Disney on Saturday, January 21, 2012.   SCPA students -- John Avery, (tenor saxophone), Marc Encabo (bass), Hiram Garza (keyboard), Chaz Cabrera (alto saxophone), Tyler Kreutel (drums) and Josh Vasquez (guitar) -- formed a band called Jazz Avenue and competed against seven other teen bands out of one hundred seventeen who qualified.  These impressive SCPA students will be headed to Frankfurt, Germany in March to perform at the 2012 SchoolJam Germany Finals.  Jazz Avenue also won $5,000 for SCPA’s music department and $1,000 toward the purchase of new band clothing.   SCPA Band members recorded Area Fifty Funk, written by SCPA eleventh grader Joshua Vasquez, in a private music video recording session on the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus.

With a focus on jazz, SCPA students competed against Hip Hop, Pop, Alternative, Rock and Indie music performed by teen bands from Massachusetts, Connecticut, Tennessee, Utah, Indiana and other parts of California.  Second and third place runners-up hailed from Jeffersonville, Indiana and Knoxville, Tennessee, respectively.

Jazz Avenue was adjudicated by Disney talent casting director Stan Freese, Irwin Korfeld of InTune Partners and Westchester Media, Menzie Pittman of Contemporary Music Center, and Michael Smith of Peavey Electronics.    In the “Best of Categories”, Joshua Vasquez received “Best Guitar” and SCPA twelfth grader John Avery received the “Judges Prize.”    Jazz Avenue will be invited to perform  at NAMM 2013 in Anaheim.  
“The experience of attending the NAMM Show and winning Best Teen USA was bigger than anything we could have expected.  These students have been working together throughout their high school years at SCPA deserved this major recognition and opportunity,” said Tamara Paige, SCPA music chair and jazz instructor.    Mitzi Lizarraga, SCPA Principal, looks forward to hearing more of Jazz Avenue in SCPA’s performance of An American Portrait of jazz and classical music on February 2, 2012 at 2:30 pm, February 3, 2012 at 7 pm and February 4, 2012 at 2 pm in SCPA’s Grand Theatre.    

SchoolJam USA works to unite local schools, teens, educators and communities in the quest to get young people making music and to promote the importance of school music programs.  SchoolJam USA is a program of and produced by the National Association of Music Merchants, commonly called NAMM in reference to the organization's popular NAMM trade shows, is the not-for-profit association that unifies, leads and strengthens the $17 billion global musical instruments and products industry.  NAMM's activities and programs are designed to promote music making to people of all ages. NAMM is comprised of more than 9,000 Member companies.

SCPA is a college preparatory arts-focused magnet public school for students in grades 6 through 12 who have a strong interest, passion and talent in the arts.  All prospective students interested in attending SCPA must apply through the school district’s Enrollment Options Office.  Entering high school students must audition as part of the admission process.  Middle school students are selected through a lottery.   Upcoming auditions for the Fall 2012-2013 school year will be held at SCPA on February 25 and March 3, 2012. For more information about SCPA, and the upcoming high school auditions or current season of performances please visit

Watch Jazz Avenue

Area Fifty Funk:


Half Step Samba: