Newark Academy’s nationally renowned jazz band, Chameleon, will go for its 11th straight New Jersey Association for Jazz Education (NJAJE) State Title on April 25 at 5:00 p.m. at J.P. Stevens High School. Chameleon qualified for the NJAJE State Finals by receiving a gold rating in the preliminaries. The band also received an outstanding saxophone and rhythm section award, as well as the top sight-reading award. Michael Wang ’20 and Luca Moretti ’20 received soloist awards, while Yasmeena Sharif ’23, Vikram Bala ’20 and Ben Chaddha ’21 received honorable mentions as soloist.
The NA Big Band, the Academy's junior band, qualified for the NJAJE State Finals as well, receiving a silver rating in the preliminaries. NA Big Band also received a gold rating for sight-reading, which was the first for the ensemble. Last year, NA Big Band came in third place in the state finals, making it the first time that the group has gotten into a top-three position. The NA Big Band has received strong leadership from Noah Chirnomas ’22, Ryan Kim ’22, Eli Song ’20 and Akshay Bhandari, according to long-time, Newark Academy Jazz Director Julius Tolentino.