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Jazz Band Concert Makes a Spash

Cator

Cator

Gabrielle Cator, Campus News Reporter

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On Friday, April 7, The Jazz band hosted its annual concert in Mattison Auditorium.  Seniors John LePino and Katherine Liu gave a warm welcome, and let the magic begin.  This concert was the seniors’ last,  and they, along with the rest of the members of Jazz Band, put on a fantastic show.  The concert consisted of in sync foot tapping, constant head bobbing, and harmonic note playing, which created a the lively atmosphere almost like a Swing dance party in the 30’s (but without the twirling and throwing your partner in the air).

The concert opened up with a trio, which included Paige Wu ‘18 on the piano, Tina Moon ‘18 on the violin, and Ellie Park ‘17 on the cello.  The trio performed an energetic tango piece that constantly shifted from a soft, romantic feeling to a dark, intense feeling.  The piano really complimented the two strings, and the song was a great demonstration on the significance of tempo in music.

The second group to perform was the Flute Ensemble.  They brought smiles to the audience’s faces when they began to play a crowd favorite: The Pink Panther Theme Song. The drums and bass added a nice touch to the piece, and the notes flowed perfectly with the flute section.

The Jazz Combo was the second smallest group to perform, but these musicians lit up the stage. The Jazz feel began here, and this small group, which included Lachlan Cormie ’17 on tenor saxophone, Matt Zhou ‘19 on clarinet, Max Scanlon ’17 on piano, August Corper ’17 on violin, David Wonsey on drums, and Dr. Bouldin on bass, created such a unique sound.  The violin added an interesting twist to the combo since the instrument is usually associated with classical music.

One of the most outstanding parts of the concert was when freshman Molly Villodas took the stage and swept away the crowd with her jazzy, Broadway-style voice.  According to Molly, taking the stage came with butterflies, but this nervousness was in no way evident to the audience, who only saw her shining confidence.  She explained, “I felt better once I started singing, and I definitely hope to continue singing at Kent in the future.”

Cormie and Zhou also stole the show with their frequent solos. When asked how he felt about the concert and The Jazz Band, Lachlan replied “I’ll truly miss the Jazz program at Kent. It helped make me the person I am today and allowed me to expand my creative self. I love Jazz band, because once a week we were able to all come together and produce something that sounded amazing… and also for Dr. Bouldin’s jokes.

Dr. Bouldin, who is the director of Concert Band and Jazz Band, does something very unique on stage: he conductors and he performs.  When asked why he performs with his students, he described a childhood memory of his band teacher playing with his band and that “methodology” made his band the best band in Alabama.  Dr. Bouldin then made a perfect addition: “I don’t play to be the star, I’ve been the star. It’s their turn to the stars, so if I can support that and make them shine the brightest, then that’s what I want to do.”

According to Mrs. Hobbs, the Jazz band is a great opportunity for students who are interested in practicing Jazz music.  She explained that the Jazz Combo meets on Wednesdays, where they learn about improvisation, and the Jazz Band meet on Sundays. Mrs. Hobbs emphasized that Jazz Band is made up of students that are either recommended to participate or eager to learn about and play Jazz music.

The Concert not only showcased great music, but also showcased how different people and generations with different instruments can come together to create something wonderful.  This time and effort put into the performance was clear, but the fun that everyone was having on stage really made the performance special.  

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Jazz Band Concert Makes a Spash