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Middle School Combo Remotely attends the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival

Photo of the Seattle Academy Middle School Combo attending the Virtual Jazz Festival
Written by Matt Frost

Recently, the Middle School Combo attended the 2021 Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival! The well organized event hosted by the University of Idaho was held remotely this year. The combo created three performance videos and submitted them to the festival for adjudication. “Funktion Junction” was the first piece, a hip funk-styled tune with solos by Avery Murch on guitar and Dash Cockrill on drums. The second piece, their ballad, was “Old Friends” featuring Vincent Hunt on tenor sax. Finishing up the performance was “Brother Benjamin,” a medium swing tune featuring Liam Mahoney on trumpet. In addition to working with a clinician, the combo also had access to all of the masterclasses and performances of the festival via webinar.

The combo’s clinic with South Carolina-based saxophonist and Director of Jazz Studies and Saxophone at Furman University, Matt Olson, was held via Zoom in the Seattle Academy band room on Thursday, February 25th. Not only was this the first day of hybrid learning with the Middle School on campus, but also an exciting day to host a clinic with such an outstanding artist and educator!  Dr. Olson worked through tone and pitch production, ideas on learning swing feel, as well as specific saxophone tips for Vincent. Very cool!

SAAS Middle School Combo

  • Dash Cockrill ‘25 - Drums
  • ZiQi Chau ‘25 - Piano
  • Sekoy Rice ‘25 - Bass
  • Avery Murch ‘25 - Guitar
  • Liam Mahoney ‘25 - Trumpet
  • Ansel Buerk ‘26  - Trumpet
  • Franklin Heymann ‘25 - Trumpet
  • Vincent Hunt ‘25 - Tenor Sax
  • Thatcher Gladwish ‘26 - Trombone