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Annual Ridgewood Friends of Music Concert

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the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Ridgewood NJ, do you like listening to live professional musicians? How about when you can do it for a fraction of NYC ticket prices right here in Ridgewood?

Continue reading Annual Ridgewood Friends of Music Concert

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Next Session of Ridgewood YWCA Children’s Dance Begins June 26

june 16,2016
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Ridgewood NJ, For over 27 years, the YWCA Bergen County has been providing quality dance instruction for children ages 3 to 12 in a fun, loving and relaxed environment. We instill in our students a lifelong affinity for movement, activity and fitness. Classes will begin on June 26 and run through August 20, 2016.
Twinkle Toes (ages 3 to 5 yrs) develops movement skills through ballet basics and body motion. Ballet I (ages 5 to 7 yrs) allows beginning dancers to improve ballet basics and movement. Ballet II (ages 8 to 12 yrs) teaches classical ballet techniques, basic dance terminology, and traditional barre and floor routines to develop coordination, grace and stamina. Jazz/Tap I and II (ages 5 to 7 yrs; 8 to 12 yrs.) works on jazz and tap dance movements and rhythms. Tap shoes required.
All classes run in 8-week sessions and are held at the YWCA’s 112 Oak Street, Ridgewood facility. For more information contact the Membership Department at 201-444-5600 ext. 400, or visit
The YWCA offers dozens of other fitness, wellness, and enrichment programs for kids, teens, adults, and seniors, as well as American Red Cross certified swim classes for swimmers at every age and level. Drop-in child care is also available at the 112 Oak Street, Ridgewood facility. for details or call 201-444-5600 for a free brochure.
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Ridgewood HS Jazz Bands to Present ‘Jazz in the Wood’

Ridgewood HS Jazz Bands to Present ‘Jazz in the Wood’

May 10,2016
the staff of the Ridgewood blog

RIDGEWOOD, N.J. ,On Friday, May 13, Ridgewood High School’s award winning jazz ensembles will present an evening of big band jazz at their annual “Jazz in the Wood” dinner-concert to be held at the Woman’s Club of Ridgewood. The bands will be joined by special guest artist Mark Friedman, a renowned jazz saxophonist and Wyckoff resident, and longtime friend to the Ridgewood Music Program. Friedman will be the featured soloist with the RHS Big Band and Jazz Lab, playing music ranging from swing to bebop and Latin to funk. This gala event marks the culmination of Friedman’s three-month collaboration with the RHS jazz bands.

The dinner portion of the program will feature a three-course meal catered by Dawn’s Catering of Ridgewood, and will include a menu of salad, pasta, chicken and dessert with gluten-free and vegetarian options available. For children 12 and under, a kid’s menu option includes chicken tenders, and fries.

Having taught private lessons to flute, clarinet and saxophone students in the area for more than three decades, Mark Friedman has gained a reputation as one of the premier teachers in Bergen County. His students have been accepted to the most prestigious conservatories and universities in the country and are regularly selected to perform in honors ensembles at the County, Region, All-State and All-Eastern levels.

Mr. Friedman received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Music Education and Jazz Performance from Jersey City State College (now New Jersey City University.) His teachers include Dick Volkart, Walt Levinsky, Dr. Richard Scott, Dan Trimbole, Dr. Alvin Fossner, Emile DeCosmo, and the great jazz legend, Phil Woods, whom he considered his mentor.

Mr. Friedman has toured, performed, and recorded with such great artists as Frank Sinatra, Buddy Rich, Tito Puente, the Big Three Palladium Orchestra, Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, Dizzy Gillespie, Manhattan Transfer, the Glenn Miller Orchestra, the Four Tops, the Temptations, Frankie Valle, Andy Williams, Wayne Newton, the Dalton Gang and numerous others, including a Grammy Award© winning record with Machito.

Mr. Friedman is the director of the Indian Hills High School Band, and is on the music faculty at Ramapo High School.

The RHS Big Band and Jazz Lab are directed by Gary Fink and Jeffrey Haas, respectively, and feature many talented student musicians, including six who recently performed with the New Jersey Region I Jazz Ensembles. The bands will present songs in a variety of styles, including swing, bebop, New Orleans, Latin, rock and funk. Well known songs such as Earl Hagan’s Harlem Nocturne, Duke Ellington’s Perdido, Sonny Rollins’ St. Thomas, Joe Zawinul’s Birdland, and Phil Woods’ Randi will all be performed, and will feature Friedman along with several RHS soloists.

Dating back to the mid-20th century when such legendary jazz artists as Nelson Riddle, Sonny Igoe, and Red Mitchell could be heard in the music rooms, Ridgewood High School has enjoyed a long and distinguished history of excellence in jazz performance. With two big bands, a vocal jazz ensemble and various combos, the jazz program at RHS introduces students to music of different styles within the jazz genre. The Big Band and Jazz Lab have both been recognized with awards for excellent or superior performance at the NJAJE state jazz ensemble festivals, and have performed at venues around the country including Ryles Jazz Club in Cambridge, MA, Steamers Jazz Club and Café in Fullerton, CA, Bohemian Caverns in Washington, DC, the Town Centre in Virginia Beach, VA and Catalina Jazz Club in Hollywood, CA. Guest artists who have worked or performed with the jazz program include: Darmon Meader, Byron Stripling, Conrad Herwig, Wayne Bergeron, Jeff Jarvis, Marvin Stamm, Ingrid Jensen, Dave Bargeron, Dave Stryker, Don Braden, Tom “Bones” Malone, Michael Philip Mossman, Andy Martin and many others.

There will be a seatings at 6PM and 8:30PM for “Jazz in the Wood,” and tickets are $40 per adult/$20 for children 12 and under. Tickets for the event are only available in advance, and can be purchased online at For more information, contact Nick Trent at (201) 805-8789 or via email at

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Four Ridgewood High musicians named to jazz ensemble



April 10, 2015    Last updated: Friday, April 10, 2015, 12:31 AM
By Aimee La Fountain
The Ridgewood News

Four Ridgewood High School students were selected to perform in the Region 1 Senior Jazz Ensemble at New Jersey Association for Jazz Education’s honor ensemble concert. The performance will take place at 3 p.m. on April 19 at Nutley High School.

RHS freshman Griffin Fink and sophomores Brian and Max Caine will join the rhythm section.

“When you hear a rhythm section like Griffin, Max and Brian, you notice right away that these guys have an established groove,” said Jeffrey G. Haas, director of bands at Ridgewood High School.

RHS sophomore Teddy Trent will play trumpet.

Haas said he “is a wonderful player with a strong, clear tone and a natural jazz feel.”

Haas was chosen as conductor for this year’s concert.

“I knew that he would be a great conductor and fun to work under,” Fink said.

“When I found out that Mr. Haas was directing the jazz band, I just had to try out,” Trent said.