Joliet West High School
|This article relies on references to primary sources. (April 2010)|
|Joliet West High School|
|401 N. Larkin Avenue
Joliet, Illinois, USA
The school was originally constructed in 1964, one year after its identical sister school Joliet East, and has since been added onto 4 times. The first addition, completed in the early 1980s, added a bookstore to the cafeteria, additional space around the maintenance area, a multi-purpose room by the gymnasiums (primarily used for dance and wrestling), six additional classrooms, and a greenhouse. That greenhouse was later torn down.
The second and third additions (not shown in the picture) were completed as two consecutive projects, adding several additional classrooms, a new band room, cafeteria, conference room, dean's offices, and student commons area. The first phase broke ground on November 4, 2001 and was completed the following school year. The second phase began during the 2002-2003 year and was open for fall 2003 classes.
A field house was built in late 2007, and an additional building housing science classes was constructed in 2011.
Separation of Schools
During the 2008 - 2009 school year, Central and West began to again divide the schools' athletic programs, allowing the West mascot to become the Tiger once again, leaving Central as the Steelmen. The split began with Joliet's Freshmen football team dividing. As of the 2010 - 2011 school year, Joliet Central and Joliet West have their own, entirely independent sports programs.
Joliet West has been known for its outstanding music programs, both instrumental and choral. Many alumni continue on in music as a career, including Charlie Adams, John Barrowman, Jimmy Chamberlin, Andy Dick, Doug Pinnick, Anthony Rapp, and Janina Gavankar. The Marching Tigers, Joliet West's marching band, is one of the few groups that held the Tiger name throughout the adoption and relinquishment of the Steelman mascot. There have been five band directors at Joliet West: Arthur D. Katterjohn, 1964–1968; Dean H. Sayles, 1968–1990; I. V. Foster, 1990–1992; Ted Lega, 1992–1993, and Kevin T. Carroll, 1993–2014. Kevin T. Carroll was love by many. He announced at the end of the 2014 school year that he was resigning to spend more time with his family. As of June 2014, Joliet West does not have a new band director. The band program has consistently received high scores at competitions and has been invited to the Superstate band festival multiple times.
Recently, Joliet West High School's music program has come to note by being one of only a handful of high schools to have an "Opera Scenes" program, performing snippets from different operas translated into English. The Joliet West Vocal Music department has performed scenes ranging from "La Boheme" to "Die Fledermaus" to "Dialogues of the Carmelites". September 25, 2009's Scenes of Murder, featuring "Don Giovanni", "Hänsel and Gretel", "Dido and Aeneas", and the aforementioned "Dialogues of the Carmelites", surpassed the attendance of the 2008 spring play; 338 people attended the event. A 13-foot guillotine was built specifically for 2009's Opera Scenes.
- Charlie Adams, drummer/percussionist (Chameleon, Yanni)
- John Barrowman, Broadway actor (Doctor Who, Torchwood)
- Jimmy Chamberlin, drummer (The Smashing Pumpkins)
- Adrianne Curry - model, TV personality (Dropped out in 11th grade)
- Andy Dick - actor-comedian (The Andy Dick Show)
- Randall Kleck - martial artist
- Doug Pinnick - musician
- Anthony Rapp - actor (Rent)
- Eric Parker - former NFL player (San Diego Chargers)
- Janina Gavankar - actress, musician (The L Word, The Gates (TV series), True Blood)