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Jazz and concert bands gear up for spring

The band crowded around Isaiah Micu, ’03, as he did his best impression of a 1920s jazz singer. They then clapped and laughed as John Meyers, ’02, sang along with his deep voice grooves. The band, apparently, plays not only instrumental concert music, but also engages in other musical genres.

“I like singing with Isaiah,” Myers said. “It helps me when I plant trees in my back yard.”

Along with jazz singing, the band also practices vigorously at perfecting their music for their upcoming concerts.

“The band is looking forward to our future concerts,” Paul McEntee, band director, said. “They have all been working hard, and all the groups have improved a lot.”

For the past 15 weeks this group has rehearsed in preparation for a special chapel concert on April 22.

“Our performance was pretty good,” David Pohl, ’03, trombonist said. “However, that auditorium is a very hard place to play in for it is surrounded by curtains.”

“I was in band my freshman year so I know the hard work that goes into band,” Josh Justin, ’03, ex-percussionist said. “I thought that they played and sounded extremely well and I know they worked very hard to achieve the sound.”

The concert band’s only competition this year was held at Biola University on April 19. In addition to playing at the college, the band was treated to a visit to Disneyland, which, for many, was the highpoint of the year.

“I loved Disneyland,” Michael Ward, ’03, trombonist said. “It was the high point of my band career. However, my spirits were dampened after I was unable to find a lightsaber at the Star Tours ride.”

This annual festival at Biola University features 12 bands that play various songs which are judged by the Biola Music Director. At one point, all of the bands came together to play the Battle Hymn of the Republic.

“I quite enjoyed the trip,” Nathan White, ’03, saxophonist said. “Mass band is always exciting for me.”

Other students enjoyed the underlining meaning behind the song.

“The Battle Hymn of the Republic I felt was very appropriate,” Pohl said. “After the incident on 9/11, the fact that everyone came together to play a patriotic song really inspired me.”

Despite being nervous, many members felt that both the trip and their performance was worthwhile.

“I was nervous at first to perform but once we started I felt a lot better,” Jaryn Warren, ?03, percussionist said. “I am relieved that it is over with and I believe we performed well.”

The jazz band next performs at The Jazz Band In Concert on May 9 at The Peoples Church in Ground Zero at 6 p.m. Tickets are $10 and include dinner and the concert and are available in the office or from McEntee in the music suite.

The band will be in concert in the annual Spring Concert on May 21 at Riverpark Bible Church beginning at 7 p.m.

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