Faculty lineup takes shape for 2011/by Michael Kelly
Jazz Campers and Residency participants know how fun being at SJW’s summer programs can be. But SJW has a huge reputation among jazz educators as well, which is why the top artists and educators clamor for faculty positions.
Peter Stoltzman, who is returning to SJW as the Jazz Camp Faculty Director, explains the excitement of being a dedicated SJW faculty member: “I am honored and excited to accept this position in 2011, the Workshop’s 40th season,” he says. “My favorite thing about being an SJW faculty member is having the chance to help young musicians enjoy the experience of being a musician. Whether they go on to be professional musicians or not doesn’t matter. Each student at SJW is already essentially a musician, and always will be. As a teacher, when you witness the experience of new growth, understanding, or inspiration, there is nothing more satisfying. Teaching at SJW renews my musical spirit, sharpens my skills, and rejuvenates my enthusiasm for the music we call jazz.”
Many longtime faculty members have already signed up to return for 2011, and we’re also pleased to welcome many new artists to the SJW family as well. We’re still filling quite a few positions, but as of today, here are the faculty members you can expect to encounter when you attend the 2011 Jazz Camp or Jazz Residency. For individual faculty profiles, click here.
Campana Jazz Festival participants win SJW scholarships/by Michael Kelly
SJW was treated to a day of fantastic performances at the 36th annual Campana Jazz Festival in Pleasanton earlier this month. Dozens of middle school and high school jazz bands, combos, and choirs came from northern California to compete on the accommodating campus of Amador Valley High School, and to take advantage of the educational clinics given by such notable jazz educators and artists as SJW faculty members Erik Jekabson and Frank Sumares.
The adjudicators were on the hunt for deserving talent on behalf of SJW, and to this end, two budding musicians were each awarded partial scholarships to the 2011 Stanford Jazz Workshop.
Playing lead alto saxophone for Harvest Park Middle School, Brandon Zhang wowed the audience and adjudicators with his fantastic solo ballad work. His warm tone, musical vibrato, and mature phrasing are hints of what we have to look forward to when Brandon arrives at Jazz Camp this summer! Harvest Park Middle School band director Paul Perazzo has a great-sounding band filled with passionately swinging young jazzers-to-be.
The jazz juggernaut from Folsom High School rolled into Campana, and rolled out with first-place honors in the “AA” band, combo, and jazz choir categories. In that first-place choir of singers all of whom exhibit exceptional intonation, phrasing, rhythm, and musicality, Tanner Robinson distinguished himself with a splendid performance and captured a partial tuition scholarship to this summer’s Stanford Jazz Workshop. Director Curtis Gaesser has trained a veritable army of excellent jazz musicians at Folsom High; you can find out more about the Folsom Music Program here.
Congratulations to all the winning ensembles, and thanks for all the great jazz!
Trombonist Michael Wang wins SJW scholarship/by Michael Kelly
It wasn’t enough for Michael Wang to blow away the Folsom Jazz Festival adjudicators with his astonishing trombone work on a blazing arrangement of John Coltrane’s “Giant Steps” while performing with the Rio Americano HIgh School Jazz Ensemble 1. He also took a chorus soloing on soprano recorder!
Though Michael wasn’t available to accept his scholarship award at the awards ceremony on January 29, his band director, Josh Murray, kindly stepped in to accept on Michael’s behalf, shown here with SJW Marketing Director, Ernie Rideout.
Everyone in the Rio Americano band did a fantastic job at the Folsom Jazz Festival, winning the sweepstakes for the high school band division. Contratulations to all the great musicians at Rio Americano, and we look forward to seeing Michael Wang this summer at the Stanford Jazz Workshop!
Check out all the other great things the Rio Americano music program is doing: