Fresno City College “City Jazz Festival” Featuring Local Musician


City Jazz Flyer 2022

Story By: James Pewthers, Reporter

The City Jazz Fest at Fresno City College is taking place on March 17, in the FCC Theatre in the Speech/Music building. The event will begin at 8 a.m. and close at 6 p.m. 

The main event will start at 12 p.m. with a performance by the FCC Jazz Ensemble and local musician Eva Scow, directed by Director of Jazz Studies at FCC and Festival Director Paul Lucckesi. Scow plays a variety of string instruments, like the violin and mandolin.

Lucckesi said there will likely be a chance for the students attending the festival to have a Q&A session with Scow after the main performances. 

The event will include workshops and clinics for the various student jazz groups throughout the Central Valley in attendance.

“At the end of every performance, the students go into a room with one of the clinicians and get 30 minutes of a clinic on a variety of different topics. Mostly what they did, mostly what just happened,” Lucckesi said.

Schools in attendance will include Central High School, most Clovis Unified high schools, a few Fresno Unified high schools, and some of their feeder middle schools.

Lucckesi was “apprehensive” to plan and bring the festival back amidst the omicron surge, but is happy that it will be taking place again.

“My biggest concern was, ‘how do I safely get kids here, and how do I get people to work with them, and get them some kind of experience in the safest way possible,’” Lucckesi said.

According to Lucckesi, the Reno Jazz Festival in late April will be completely virtual, so he is excited that FCC’s event will be in-person.

“The fact that we get to do this in person, I feel really good about it,” Lucckesi said.

FCC student and saxophone player Tom Volez said, “It’s nice to be playing in front of people again.”

Another music student, Hunter Buck, came to the festival as a student for six years before the pandemic. Buck will be checking for vaccine cards and negative COVID tests for the festival. 

“Letting those kids have that opportunity to play on a live stage and get feedback from judges is super important,” he said.

Lucckesi made the decision to have schools bring one band each, recalling his experiences coming to the festival when he worked at other schools. 

“When I worked at Buchanan, I had four or five bands, and by myself I could occupy the morning slot,” Lucckesi said.

People in attendance must provide proof of vaccination, or a negative COVID test from the last 72 hours. Masks are required indoors for everyone. 

The concert is free for FCC students and the community.