Seattle Office of Film + Music


GARFIELD HIGH JAZZ BAND TAKES FIRST PLACE AT ESSENTIALLY ELLINGTON

Seattle Times
Performing in perhaps the strongest field of bands in the event’s history, Garfield High School won the Essentially Ellington high school jazz band competition for an unprecedented fourth time Monday night at New York’s Lincoln Center. Led by director Clarence Acox, Garfield’s lead trumpeter, senior Riley Mulherkar, named the “outstanding soloist” of the three-day festival, played a solo with trumpeter Wynton Marsalis on the Duke Ellington tune, “The Shepherd.” The two traded measures in a moment Mulherkar called “more than a thrill. … I can’t imagine anything better than to share it with one of my biggest idols.” With four wins in the past decade, Garfield is the most successful and consistent band in the competition, considered the most prestigious of its kind. Bands from two other schools in the Seattle area, Roosevelt and Edmonds-Woodway high schools, also competed. Three-time winner Roosevelt earned an honorable mention by placing fourth; Edmonds-Woodway did not place. Each of the schools also won a number of individual awards. Garfield High School jazz band won 10 individual awards, more than any other band, and their rhythm section won an outstanding rhythm section award. Roosevelt won three individual awards and one section award for outstanding trombone section; Edmonds-Woodway won four individual awards. The 15 final high school jazz bands were culled from hundreds of schools in the U.S. and American schools worldwide. “The level of musicianship, interpretation, improvisation and soloing has gotten 10 times better,” said Erika Floreska, the director of education at Jazz at Lincoln Center. “None of them sound like concert bands anymore. They all sound like jazz bands.” To read full coverage of the Essentially Ellington competition, follow the above link.

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KPLU PROFILES THE FRIENDLY RIVALRY BETWEEN ROOSEVELT AND GARFIELD’S JAZZ ENSEMBLES

KPLU
It’s well known news in Seattle that both Garfield and Roosevelt have incredibly talented jazz bands and directors. Both bands have won the Essentially Ellington High school Jazz Band Competition four times, a tie for most wins in the competition’s 15 year history. The competition is the most illustrious and high profile high school jazz band competition in the country, with 15 bands from around the nation descending on New York City to play the music of Duke Ellington for a panel of judges. There is naturally a friendly rivalry between the two schools, who often toggle back and forth between holding first place. Roosevelt director Scott Brown says: “People back in New York and people around d the country are always asking, ‘What’s in the water out in Seattle?’” He laughs. “It’s not really in the water. We think it’s the coffee.” This article profile both of the school’s programs and directors and discusses their preparation for this year’s competition. To read the full article, follow the link.

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THREE NW HIGH SCHOOL JAZZ BANDS TO HEAD TO ESSENTIALLY ELLINGTON JAZZ COMPETITION IN NEW YORK

The Seattle Times
Jazz bands from Garfield and Roosevelt high schools in Seattle and Edmonds-Woodway High School will represent the Northwest at the 15th annual Essentially Ellington competition and festival in New York City, May 8-10.Fifteen bands are chosen from around the country every year to compete in the prestigious event.



SEATTLE’S EARSHOT JAZZ FESTIVAL LOOKS BEYOND TRADITION

Seattle Timesearshot-claudiaacuna
The 2009 Earshot Jazz Festival, one of the nation’s most eclectic and protracted festivals of its kind, begins and ends its three-week run with reminders of what qualifies Seattle as a great jazz city. Assiduously engineered by Earshot director John Gilbreath, the event, which is more of concentrated series than a festival, aims to challenge and educate as much as entertain. It brings in musicians American audiences (let alone Seattle audiences) seldom get to see — somewhat unfamiliar names who are doing much of the work of innovating and redefining of jazz. Earshot features more than 50 concerts and also makes generous use of local talent. It opens Friday night at the Triple Door with the Garfield High School Jazz Band, which won this year’s prestigious Essentially Ellington competition in New York.