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      Students jazz up their mornings

      Back from spring break, Marquette Senior High School music students are prepping for the annual NMU Jazz Festival this Thursday and Friday. Monday morning, students, led by Jazz Band Director Dr. Matt Ludwig, squeezed in some practice time before classes started. About 20 MSHS students make up the jazz band. The annual Jazz Festival is a chance to show what they've been working on.

      "It's kind of like jazz Christmas for them; it's the one day of year that they really look forward to and they can, not only can they show off what they've been working on, but they can interact with other students throughout the U.P. and Northern Lower Michigan that are interested in jazz," said Dr. Ludwig. "It's just a great day. To have all those students together in one place is really special."

      The Northern Michigan University Jazz Fest begins with a special concert at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Reynolds Recital Hall. The MSHS band will be performing on Friday starting at 8 a.m. More than 25 schools will be participating. Students will be performing throughout the day at Jamrich Hall and the Reynolds Recital Hall, those performances are free.

      Tickets for the special performances Thursday and Friday evening are $3 for NMU students and $7 for the general public. All ticket sales go to NMU music scholarships. You can pick them up online at or by calling (906) 227-1032.