The 26th Annual Bellevue College Jazz Band Festival


Headshot of Marshall Gilkes with parts of a trombone in the foreground.

Featuring Guest Artist Trombonist
Marshall Gilkes

Greetings fellow band directors – Brian Shaw, Interim Director of Jazz bands at Bellevue College here. I would like to invite you to participate in the 26th Annual Bellevue College Jazz Band Festival and announce that trombonist Marshall Gilkes will be our guest artist for this year’s festival. (Many of you probably heard him most recently at Town Hall in Seattle with the Maria Schneider Orchestra, in his jaw-dropping solo that opened the concert.) We’re so excited to feature him with the BC Jazz Band and have him share his wisdom with you and your students!

I’m honored to cover this year at BC for our friend and colleague Jim Sisko, who is taking a leave of absence to care for family. Just to briefly introduce myself – I’m a trumpet player, teacher, and arranger who moved to the area in 2021 after serving for 15 years as Professor of Trumpet and Jazz Studies at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge. Even though I’m relatively new to the PNW, I’ve already had the joy of working with several of you and your bands, and sincerely look forward to the opportunity to welcome you all to our festival in this new capacity! Please email me at the address below with any questions you have about the festival.

As we continue to improve the musical and educational experience for you and your students, all preliminary performances will be live-streamed on the Bellevue College website.

Live Stream

High School Combo Division

Student groups will perform and receive feedback onstage from our artists. One ensemble will be chosen to perform at the Saturday evening concert.

Extended Performance & Clinic Times

Middle/Jr. High Division will enjoy 20-minute performances and 35-minute clinics.

High School Division will enjoy 30-minute performances and 45-minute clinics.


Marshall Gilkes will provide a masterclass and performance on Friday/Saturday afternoon and will be featured with the Bellevue College Big Band on Saturday evening.

Web Registration

Our 2024 Jazz Band Festival is full! Registration is now closed. Look back here in mid-October 2024 for information on our 2025 festival.

Registration has been moved 100% online.  We hope you enjoy this new streamlined method for enrollment! To learn more about registering, visit our registration page.

As always, we look forward to hosting you and your students at the 26th Annual Bellevue College Jazz Festival.


Brian Shaw – Interim Director, Bellevue College Jazz Bands

General Schedule Information

BC’s Jazz Band, directed by Brian Shaw, will host the 26th annual Bellevue College Jazz Band Festival. There will be 40 Middle School, High School and College Jazz Bands and Combos participating over two days.


Friday, Feb. 2, will be an all-day event for Middle Schools from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Friday will come to an end presenting the top three schools with special recognition in addition to a special presentation of 8 individual awards.

Saturday, Feb. 3, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., the High Schools will compete.  At 5 p.m. the top three schools will be selected for the evening concert. The evening concert will start at 8 p.m. with the top three high schools performing followed by a performance by own BC Jazz Band with guest artist Marshall Gilkes.

Guest artist trombonist Marshall Gilkes will be performing at a clinic on Friday & Saturday during the lunch hour as well as performing with the BC Jazz Band in the Saturday evening concert.

Award Announcement 

At the end of the Middle School and Junior High competition on Friday, three outstanding band awards will be presented as well as individual soloist awards. At the end of the day on Saturday, soloist awards will be announced, and three high school bands will be selected to perform in the evening concert. All high school bands, including those that perform on Friday are eligible to be selected as showcase bands on the Saturday evening concert.  Places are determined solely by the afternoon scoring.  The three showcase bands will lead off the Saturday evening concert, and the performance order will be determined by a random draw.

Traditionally, junior high and middle school bands have performed on Friday and high school bands have performed on Saturday.  If needed, we are happy to host a high school band on Friday if it helps with your travel arrangements.



Registration Information

Registration Deadline

Our 2024 Jazz Band Festival is full! Registration is now closed. Look back here in mid-October 2024 for information on our 2025 festival.


Payment may be made by credit card or check. An invoice will be sent after registration is complete.


  • Jazz Band: $350.00 (includes 1 ticket each for Students and Directors for Saturday Evening Concert.)
  • High School Combo: $70.00
  • Additional Evening Tickets: $15 per ticket (Tickets may also be purchased soon through Brown Paper Tickets)

Click on the button below to start your registration.

Registration is now closed!

Festival Highlights

  1. FRIDAY: Middle/Jr High Schools – 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.: 20-minute performance, 35-minute clinic.
  2. SATURDAY: High Schools – 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.: 25-minute performance, 45-minute clinic.
  3. High School Combo Division.
  4. Live streaming of daytime performances.
  5. Directors will receive a link to recording of their performance and judge’s comments.
  6. State of the art sound reinforcement.
  7. Masterclass and performance by Guest Artist.
  8. Competitive or “Comment-Only” option.
  9. Awards will be given at the end of the day and evening concert.
  10. Awards will include outstanding bands and outstanding soloists.
  11. Saturday Evening Concert is free to all participants.

Marshall Gilkes, Guest Artist

Headshot of Marshall Gilkes holding a trombone.

Over the course of the past 20 years, Marshall Gilkes has established himself as one of the world’s preeminent trombonists. A nonpareil artist at the forefront of brass playing, his virtuosic command of the instrument, marked by a warm and enveloping tone, Herculean chops, astounding flexibility and awe-inspiring range, place him in a league of his own. Crafting seven albums since 2004, Gilkes has touched on a variety of settings including the compact trio, quartet and quintet formats, a merging of brass octet and jazz combo, and big band. Drawing heavy praise in the process, including a pair of Grammy nominations, he’s cemented his reputation as a composer and leader of great renown. And with his work as a first-call sideman, carried out in parallel to those efforts, Gilkes continuously demonstrates incomparable might and adaptability. His lengthy résumé includes work performing and/or recording with bassist Carlos Henriquez, harpist Edmar Castañeda, the New York Philharmonic, the Brass Band of Battle Creek, Slide Monsters, bassist Richard Bona, pianist Makoto Ozone and numerous other top-tier musicians and outfits. And through his work with the WDR Big Band and as a longtime member of the Maria Schneider Orchestra, Gilkes has played himself into the rich history of large ensemble music. A marvel of musicality, sought after and highly respected in both the jazz and classical worlds, Gilkes has earned his rightful place in the upper echelon of both realms. Not surprisingly, his vast experience and genre-straddling skills have made him an in-demand educator, reflected by his current position on the faculty at the New England Conservatory of Music. In addition, he’s shared his knowledge and skills through master classes, clinics, guest appearances and teaching at other venerable institutions including the Banff Center, Berklee College of Music, University of North Texas, Manhattan School of Music, the Brubeck Institute, Manchester’s Royal Northern College of Music, and the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music. An S. E. Shires Artist, Gilkes performs on his signature model trombone—an instrument as versatile as its inspiration. 


Featuring Marshall Gilkes with the
BC Big Band, Brian Shaw, Director.

Feb. 3, 2024 | 8 p.m.
FREE to all student participants.

Tickets on Sale Now!

Headshot of Marshall Gilkes holding a trombone.

Middle School/Junior High School Bands Schedule

Live Stream

High School Bands Schedule

Live Stream

2024 BCJF Festival – COMBOS – BOTH DAYS

Last Updated January 31, 2024