Cardenas shows star power of CHS jazz

The Creswell High School jazz band performs this past Tuesday in its spring concert.


CRESWELL – Gonzalo Cardenas no longer looks at his trombone as a “big slidey thing.” 

“On the first day of band we had to choose instruments,” Cardenas recalled Tuesday, May 24 after Creswell High School’s Spring Concert. “There were no trumpets left, so … I just thought it was a big slidey thing at first, but once you figure out how to make sounds and play music …”

He didn’t need to finish his sentence. Let’s just say that Cardenas has done OK at figuring out how to make sounds. 

Cardenas was recently accepted into the highly prestigious New England Conservatory of Music, but he also has a scholarship to the University of Oregon. He says he plans to attend the U of O, with the potential dream of earning a masters or doctorate at the New England Conservatory. 

Cardenas, who lists Trombone Shorty and Wycliffe Gordon as two of his top influences, says he wants to focus on music and Japanese in college. 

Three groups played under the direction of Sandi Green: the CHS Concert Band, the CHS Jazz Choir and the CHS Jazz Band. 

The Jazz Band took first place in a competition in Pleasant Hill, then placed 2nd at state, losing by just a single point, even though Cardenas (trombone) and Alec Jenkins (trumpet) won solo awards. 

“That was one of the most fun trips I’ve ever taken with these kids,” Green said. 

All of Green’s groups continue to crank out entertaining performances. It’s never the same old song and dance. Always mixing it up a bit. 

Your next chance to catch them is Tuesday, June 7 in the CHS courtyard.



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