MHS Jazz prepares Doug Olsen farewell

The Medfield community will have one last chance to catch Music Director Doug Olsen leading the award-winning Medfield High School Jazz Band and wish him farewell at the June 14 MEMO concert, 6 to 8 p.m., on the Common by the Gazebo and library.

After nearly 25 years, Olsen will be departing at the end of this school year to join Worcester Polytechnic Institute as interim director of jazz bands, and instructor of jazz theory and history.

A special effort is underway to gather MHS music alumni to join in on the June 14 concert and farewell festivities, and a new "Medfield Music Alumni" Facebook page has been created to help with communication and keep everyone connected over the long term. Alumni not on Facebook are encouraged to contact the Medfield Music Association via mail@medfieldmusicassociation.com so they can be added to the contact list.

"The best part of my job has been working with so many students, and seeing them grow and develop through the program, and beyond. I treasure the moments that I've had with them, and it means a lot to me to stay in touch. Medfield is a very special community, and the music program is like family," said Olsen.

Olsen came to Medfield in 1994 as a second-year music teacher at Dale Street School, and was subsequently promoted to department leader overseeing the K-12 Medfield music program. During his tenure, Medfield High School music ensembles have earned significant recognition at the district, statewide, national and international level, with performances at prestigious locations, including Boston Symphony Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Mechanics Hall, and the Hatch Shell on the Boston Esplanade. The MHS Jazz Band has also traveled to China, New Orleans and Cuba.

As a way to honor and thank Olsen for the difference he has made in the lives of so many students, and in keeping with his passion for musical growth and inspirational experiences, the Medfield Music Association has established a "DO Music Inspiration Fund,”
designed to provide much-needed additional funds for trip and lesson/camp scholarships, as well as for unique music experiences that benefit both students and staff. Donations to the MMA can made in Doug Olsen's name by sending a check to MMA, P.O. Box 115, Medfield, MA 02052, or dropping it off at the June 14 event. Please put "DO Music Fund" in the check memo line. For more information, contact mail@medfieldmusicassociation.com.

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