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Jazz band scores "excellent" in festival

The jazz band participated in a festival for the first time ever on Feb. 26. The group left early Wednesday morning to travel to Hanford High School and perform in the California Music Educators Association (CMEA) Jazz Festival.

After performing, the group stayed to watch a few other bands to see how they compared. At the end of the day, jazz band walked off the stage with adjudicating scores of 79, 79, and 82 out of 100, leaving them with an “Excellent” award.

The judges were based their evaluations on areas such as style, presentation, artistry, dynamics and solo work.

“I had a pretty good idea in my head how we were going to do before we got there,” director Paul McEntee said. “It was beneficial for us to hear other bands perform, since the only high school sounds we had heard up to this point were our own.”

Trombone player Phillip Ochletree, ’04, received a scholarship nomination from the judges for his solo work.

“The nomination was very unexpected,” Ochletree said. “I was walking back from a gas station across the street to get back on the bus and Nathan White (?03) says to me, ?you’re nominated for a scholarship,’ so I was surprised to say the least.”

The festival went on for two days, and the FC jazz band was the first high school group to perform out of the twelve total.

“The judges awarded us with an ?excellent’,” McEntee said, “which is like the equivalent of a B+. We are happy with what we received in our first festival and we hope to improve on it in the future.”

Upcoming performance dates for the jazz band include the fine arts concert at the Veterans Memorial Auditorium on March 18, the jazz band dinner night in Ground Zero Auditorium on May 5, and a spring concert on May 8 at Riverpark Bible Church. The group will also be touring the Pacific Northwest April 21-27.

For more information on jazz band, contact McEntee at 297-9464, ext. 131.

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