Creswell, Education

CHS musicians learn, play, grow at Oregon Jazz

Joshua Jenkins solos on trombone with CHS Jazz Band 2 during the Oregon Jazz Festival. ALESHA CULP

Justin O’Reilly and Bentley Watson received Outstanding Soloist awards as Creswell High School Jazz Band 1 and Jazz Band 2, under Music Director Sandi Green, participated in the Oregon Jazz Festival on Jan. 20 at the University of Oregon.
O’Reilly was named Outstanding Soloist for Jazz 1, while Watson received the award for Jazz 2.
Jazz 1 opened their morning performance with a select group of students playing ”Mary’s Idea,” composed in 1930 by African-American jazz musician Mary Lou Williams. The piece featured solos by Blake Nelson, Javier Fregoso, Andrew Spriggs and Katie Culp.
Next was the ballad, ”Always Chasing Rainbows” with an opening trumpet solo by Hallie Drago.
The group closed with ”Bemsha Swing,” with solos by Zach Wichman, Nelson and O’Reilly.
Immediately after performing, the musicians worked with an adjudicator-clinician, who commented: ”I always love to work with Ms. Green’s groups because they are well-rehearsed and prepared,” and noted that the group clearly understood the style and the history behind the Williams piece.
In the afternoon, Jazz 2 performed ”Boogie Stop Shuffle,” with solos by Amy Myers and O’Reilly, followed by ”Only a Paper Moon,” featuring Katie McKillop on trumpet and Joshua Jenkins on trombone. They closed with ”Out of the Doghouse,” with an alto sax solo by Watson.
The adjudicator-clinician working with Jazz 2 commented that he ”appreciated how well (the students) were able to skillfully work on new ideas and ways to think about pieces,” and that they were well-rehearsed and knowledgeable.
Between the performances, all students attended a Play by Ear workshop led by Paul Krueger, director of bands at Lane Community College, followed by a master class with Oregon Jazz Festival guest musician, trumpeter Terrell Stafford.
Later, the students attended a Rhythm Games workshop with Steve Owen, UO director of jazz. ”Graciously, Mr. Owen then spent a good deal of time talking with a number of our seniors who are pursuing further music education in higher education,” said Creswell Music Booster President Mandy Hoggard.
As Creswell’s music festival season opener, Oregon Jazz was ”a day of phenomenal performances by both of our groups and filled with many wonderful learning opportunities,” Hoggard said. ”It’s going to be an exciting festival season.”



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