Pinedale Jazz Band & Choir perform at NW Jazz Festival
by Sublette County School District #1
March 24, 2008
The Pinedale Jazz Band I and the Pinedale Jazz Choir traveled to Powell last week for the 25th annual Northwest Jazz Festival. The Pinedale band and choir come from one of the smallest schools at the festival. This year there were over 45 groups from three different states participating in the festival.
The jazz choir sang for their judges on a comments only venue and then their judges, Sunny Wilkinson and Danielle Forbush, worked with them in a clinic session. Forbush’s vocal repertoire ranges from Classical to Broadway to Jazz and she has sung in many major concert works. Sunny Wilkinson is a well known clinician and performer at university and school jazz festivals as well as performing in jazz clubs around the USA. She is also a recording artist with many CDs to her credit. Monday afternoon, the Pinedale jazz choir attended a concert put on by Sunny Wilkinson and the Northwest Studio Singers. Vocal jazz members are Kathryn Konicek, Morgan Holz, Brindi McGinnis, Julianne Goltz, Jaimlyn Wilcock, Mariah McKay, Sierra Cunningham and Ashlee Anderson. Accompanist for this group is Mrs. Lynda Silvey and Gena Anderson is their director.
The jazz band played for two judges and were critiqued on their overall performances as well as their improvisation solos. They received a II+ rating and a I- from their judges. Judges this year were John Aanestad and Craig Olson. Both of these judges are considered to be top jazz adjudicators and clinicians throughout the country. Each have had strong music programs in the state of Wyoming and Mr. Olson had one of the top middle jazz programs in California. Both reside in Wyoming now with John Aanestad being from Riverton and Craig Olson residing in Powell.
The Pinedale band is always noted for how many soloists that perform with the band and this year was not different. Singled out for outstanding solo awards were Conor Raney – tenor sax, Meredith Noble – trombone, Will Rogers – bari sax and Abe Pearce –fluegelhorn. These four each received a $250 grant/scholarship to the Yellowstone Jazz Camp this summer for their outstanding musicianship.
That night the band went to a concert which featured the Wyoming IAJE allstate jazz band and then the Northwest College Jazz Band. Holden Vargas, a former Pinedale HS jazz band player was in the Northwest College group, playing bari sax and soloing with the band. Marcus Stowe, another former Pinedale HS Jazz band player played trumpet in the Northwest College Jazz Band. Then the festival audience was treated to the Bob Mintzer Big Band. Mr. Mintzer and his 17 piece group of jazz pros from the East Coast entertained with their tight ensemble playing and solo virtuosity way into the night.
The Pinedale Jazz Band I members are May Rose Huntley, Lizzy Cooney, Conor Raney, Maggie Hudlow, Andi Noble, Will Rogers, Jake Brunette, Meredith Noble, Casey Terrell, JoLee Springman, Ashley Transtrum, Shanna Corwin, Amy David, Abe Pearce, Dylan Strike, Brad Reints, Cody Booth, Jordanne Steege, Morgan Holz and Kathryn Konicek. They are under the direction of R. Craig Sheppard.
We can’t forget to thank our band chaperone Ellen Sheppard, choir bus driver Kelli Harrower and our band bus driver Ray Sanborn who really helped make this trip a success.
The band and choir now are getting ready for Senior Fundraising Dinner Performance (April 8th). Both groups will be performing at the District Music Festival (April 17-18) in Cokeville, followed by their home concert (April 22nd). The band is also getting ready for the University of Northern Colorado Jazz Festival at Greeley, Colorado (April 24-25), Come out and watch these young musicians when they perform April 8th at the school cafeteria and April 22nd at 7 PM in the Pinedale Auditorium.