Tonight — Wednesday, Aug. 27 — from 5-8 p.m. marks the last performance of the summer by the Edmonds-Woodway High School Jazz Colony, which includes 36 jazz musicians in small ensembles. The group will perform at the free Edmonds Sea Jazz Event at the outside public plaza outside immediately behind and to the west side of Anthony’s Beach Club Cafe at the Port of Edmonds Marina.
According to Jazz Colony coordinator Pete Bennett, Sea Jazz is sponsored by Seattle Teen Music, the Port of Edmonds, Edmonds Rotary and Anthony’s Home Port and is the third year of free local jazz (mostly musicians from the local high schools) being performed all summer long. The program continues through Sept.15 on Wednesdays from 5-8 p.m. and Sundays from 1-3 p.m.
Edmonds-Woodway High School Jazz Colony is a program in its fifth year, sponsored by the EWHS Music Boosters and this year also sponsored by the Hazel Miller Foundation. Through the program, high school jazz musicians play jazz all summer long and work on their improvisation skills, receive instruction from professional jazz clinicians and participate in weekly jam sessions. They also have several public performances as well.
Through the program, the students “improve themselves as jazz musicians and also the overall big band jazz program at Edmonds-Woodway High School and enhance the overall jazz talent in our local Edmonds community,” Bennett said. “Many of these jazz musicians and returning alumni play in other small ensembles all over the local community on a regular basis.”
Jazz Colony is run and operated by EWHS Band Director Jake Bergevin, head teaching clinician Steve Treseler, assistant clinicians Alex Dugdale and Dan Taylor and alumni teaching assistants Max Bennett, Nathan James, Kyle Brooks and Ken Weller. Jazz Colony is also supported by the EWHS Music Boosters, and Bennett gave a particular shout-out to Booster President Margaret Langsted and Treasurer Denis McDonald.
The EWHS jazz program has also established a regular gig site at Romeo’s Restaurant on 76th Avenue West, near EWHS, where small ensembles regularly play a small jazz gig on the last Tuesday of each month during the school year. “Romeo’s owner and manager Trina Santopolo has been extremely supportive of the EWHS jazz program and its students,” said Bennett, who added that the Romeo’s August gig will be this Thursday, Aug. 28, from 7 p.m.