Artist of the Month: Junior expands interest in jazz, instrumental music

The Newtonite

[media-credit name=”courtesy Steve Fabry” align=”alignright” width=”300″] Junior Alex Fabry plays the trumpet in the Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Workshop. In addition, he has played the piano since first grade.

by Peter Diamond

“Music is what I love to do,” said junior Alex Fabry, who has played piano since first grade and trumpet since fourth grade.

“I used piano as a base for my musical education, and I sort of drifted away from it in middle school,” he said. “In 10th grade, I started to practice piano again, and I love being able to sit down at a piano and jam around with friends.”

Soon after he began playing, he realized that playing music raises his spirits, he said.

“I know it sounds corny to say that there is nothing I love better than playing music, but that is the honest truth,” said Fabry. “Playing music allows me to express myself in creative and exciting ways. It allows me to step out of my comfort zone and attempt to create something that makes not only me, but the people around me, happy.”

Fabry enjoys playing jazz music, as well as funk, rock, blues and classical. At this school, he is a trumpeter in Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Workshop.

“North has provided a lot of opportunity for me to expand my knowledge of jazz,” he said. “I learn about big band-style jazz, jazz combo tunes and improvisation.”

Outside of school, he uses these skills when he plays trumpet in the Massachusetts Youth Wind Ensemble at the New England Conservatory. He has performed at Ryles Jazz Club in Cambridge, one of the Boston area’s premiere jazz clubs.

Fabry also plays keyboard and trumpet in a band called Levity that also features juniors Sebastian Barton and Sam Mayer and freshman Cole Brightbill. Levity regularly performs at the Skellig, a pub in Waltham and has performed at local schools and charitable events. The band posts original music to its website.

“Alex rocks,” said Brightbill. “He never stops learning and improving, and even when the band is not practicing, he always has music on his mind.”

Brightbill accredits Fabry as a major contributor to Levity as a composer and group member.

“Alex has contributed to building a strong relationship and trust within a group of musicians, and he always builds on something you have to say, which allows for my ideas and his ideas to come together and explode into something totally insane or beautiful or emotional or intricate,” said Brightbill.

Inspired by his band and schoolwork, Fabry said he hopes that music will continue to be a part of his life after high school.

“I plan on playing whenever and wherever possible for as long as possible, but I don’t really see music as being my career,” he said. “I see music as being a long-term hobby, although that makes it sound unimportant, which it’s not.”