Garfield High School Jazz Band photo by Daniel Sheehan.
Earshot Jazz Joins Jazz Coalition as Inaugural Member
Earshot Jazz has joined the Jazz Coalition as an inaugural member along with many other industry professionals, musicians, and supporters dedicated to the advancement of jazz. The Jazz Coalition aims to support artists and boost overall morale in this difficult time by commissioning the creation of new works. As of this date, the first wave of awardees includes Aaron Parks, Wayne Horvitz, Brandee Younger, Joel Ross, Orrin Evans, Jazzmeia Horn, and many others. For a full list of awardees or more information about the coalition, visit jazzcoalition.org.
JazzEd Virtual Gala on June 3
The JazzEd 10th Anniversary Gala will be livestreamed on YouTube on Wednesday June 3, with no tickets required. The pre-gala livestream dance party DJ’d by Michael Mwenso begins at 6:30pm and the Virtual Gala begins at 7pm. The gala will include student stories, live performances, and new videos as well as a virtual raise-the-paddle. For details on the gala visit seattlejazzed.org/gala.
Essentially Ellington Rescheduled Online
The Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Band Competition and Festival was originally slated to be held on May 7–9, but was postponed in mid-March due to COVID-19. Local area schools which would have attended in New York are Roosevelt High School, Garfield High School, Mountlake Terrace High School, Mount Si High School, and Seattle JazzED. In place of the physical event, Jazz at Lincoln Center will honor the 18 chosen bands in a livestream event from June 8–12. The Virtual International Festival will include student performances, interviews with band leaders and students, videos of alum performances, composition masterclasses, a jam session, a cheer tunnel, and the award ceremony. Earshot Jazz would like to congratulate all the student jazz band members and their band leaders. Congratulations are also in order for all the graduating seniors. For details on the virtual Essentially Ellington event visit jazzatlincolncenter.squarespace.com.
DownBeat Magazine’s 43rd Annual Student Music Awards
Earshot Jazz congratulates all the awardees in DownBeat’s Student Music Awards including these local students. In the Vocal Jazz Soloist category, the Junior High School Winner is Sivan Green from Eckstein Middle School, Seattle (dir. Mo Escobedo) and the High School Winner is Brooke Lambert from Roosevelt High School, Seattle (dir. Jean-Marie Kent). In the same category, the High School Outstanding Performer is Tess Korver from Roosevelt High School (dir. Jean-Marie Kent).
In the Large Vocal Jazz Ensemble category, the Junior High School winner is Eckstein Middle School, Vocal Jazz 1 (dir. Mo Escobedo) with the outstanding lead vocalist, Nadia Luke. In the same category the Junior High School Outstanding Performance is Grass Valley Vocal Jazz from Grass Valley Elementary, Camas (dir. Natalie Wilson).
The Large Vocal Jazz Ensemble High School Winner is Impressions from Meadowdale High School, Lynwood (dir. Jeff Horenstein) with outstanding lead soloist Joshua Reynolds. In the same category the Community College Outstanding Performance is Bellevue College Jazz Singers from Bellevue College, Bellevue (dir. Thomas Almli) with Outstanding Soloist, Jade Perry; and Outstanding 1st Vocalese Soloist, Marly Mitchell; and Outstanding 3rd Vocalese Soloist, Santiago Sosa.
Garfield High School Jazz Student’s Creative Response to COVID-19.
As with all other school students across the nation, Garfield jazz band students have had their opportunity to perform in live group settings severely limited. In particular, Garfield High Jazz Ensemble 1 students missed out on performing and competing at Essentially Ellington along with many of their other scheduled performances. Determined to continue performing, the ensemble students devised a creative way of meeting the pandemic restrictions where they’re at. Each student recorded their portion of a composition in their own space and the separate videos were compiled into one virtual concert including all 20 students. All Garfield High School bands and jazz ensembles are under the direction of Jared Sessink. The video of the virtual concert can be viewed on the Garfield Jazz YouTube channel.
Reopen Every Venue Safely Initiative
Music Cities Together, a partnership between Music Policy Forum, and Sound Music Cities is launching Reopen Every Venue Safely (REVS). Seattle is among one of the pilot cities involved. REVS will help venues create an effective reopening plan by assisting them with work plans, budgets, protocols, and communication strategies. The REVS program aims for collective and coordinated city-wide success by collaborating with local governments, other local venues, public
health experts, and creative industries advocates. Follow the link to musiccitiestogether.squarespace.com for more details about this program.
Egan’s Transition Fund
Suzanne Weghorst, owner of local jazz venue Egan’s Ballard Jam House, set up a GoFundMe campaign—Egan’s Transition Fund— to help cover their business costs and also to provide financial support to artists in response to the COVID-19 crisis. Even with the staggered re-opening of the economy, businesses like Egan’s and the musicians who rely on the venue to play their gigs, will continue to struggle. This fund will try to bridge the gap until businesses can start generating sufficient income to sustain themselves. To donate to the fund, visit gofundme.com.
City Funding For Live Music Venues
In mid-May, the King County Council approved $60 million in emergency funding to continue the county’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Office of Performance, Strategy and Budget has allotted $750,000 to support live music venues.
Mayor Durkan Joins Request for Increased Federal Arts Funding
In mid-May, Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan along with nearly two dozen mayors across the U.S sent a request to Congress asking for increased funding to the arts. As well as calling for extra funding the request also pleads for an extension to unemployment insurance for artists and self-employed workers, and more forgivable loans to nonprofit organizations, and asks for the charitable tax code to be altered to encourage more donations, among other requests. The initiative was spearheaded by San Francisco Arts Alliance and San Francisco Mayor, London Breed.
2 Year Anniversary of Signing We Have Voice
We Have Voice is a collective of musicians, performers, and thinkers from various backgrounds and identities who wish to engage in and foster transformative, and inclusive thinking and action in the creative professional world. The collective’s mission is to enrich the performing arts community. Their focus is to bring awareness to all types of inequity, including sexual harassment, and to foster inclusion and the creation of safe(r) spaces for all. Founding members include Fay Victor, Imani Uzuri, Jen Shyu, Kavita Shah, Linda May Han Oh, María Grand, Terri Lyne Carrington among others. The We Have Voice Code of Conduct was released on May 1, 2018 and there are currently 60 organizations—including Earshot Jazz—who have committed to the code. For information about the code and the We Have Voice collective visit too-many.org.
News ‘n’ Notes
Email news about Seattle-area jazz artists, venues, and creative endeavors to firstname.lastname@example.org for inclusion in the Notes section of Earshot Jazz.