Sources: The Spectrum – By Tim Beery | All Things Michael
Art by angemicifuz
CEDAR CITY – The Cedar High School Redmen Band will hold its final percussion and jazz ensemble concert of the year, Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in the Cedar High School Auditorium.
CHS band director Steve Shirts says the show is an opportunity to see and hear some of the finest young musicians in Utah.
“Earlier this year on March 28, the Redmen Jazz Ensemble performed at the State Jazz Festival at Murray High School,” said Shirts. “Two band members, Anthony Malachowski and Seth Palmer received outstanding soloist awards. We will be performing our state festival music so you will be able to hear these two fine soloists and several others as well.”
“There was about 20 soloists from around the state, that were nominated. Two from our school won, we were pretty excited about that,” Shirts added.
Malachowski and Palmer are both juniors at CHS. Malachowski said he has been playing piano for about 10 years.
“Music to me is everything,” he said. “I’ve been playing piano for 10 years, I spend a lot of time doing it. I also play percussion and write music. It is something that is very important to me and I love doing it.”
Palmer won the award playing the trumpet, a craft he has perfected over the past five years.
“My family has always been into music,” Palmer said. “I always looked up to my older brother who played. I always wanted to do it too, being in jazz ensemble has helped me a lot. Not just in music, but in school too. Coming here in the mornings has been great for me.”
Shirts said that in addition to the pieces performed at the state jazz festival the Redmen Band will present a tribute to Michael Jackson. A number of Jackson’s songs including “Thriller”, “Smooth Criminal”, “Beat it”, “I can’t help it”, “Human Nature” and “Man in the Mirror” will all be performed.
“It will be a fun blast from the past,” said Shirts of the Michael Jackson tribute. “Who knows, there may even be a moonwalk or a white glove or two.”
“They’re having a ball with it. We’ve been working on it for about three weeks, the kids are putting the finishing touches on it and doing a great job,” said Shirts of the King of Pop music.
Malachowski said the experience of playing pop music in a jazz ensemble is something he will remember for a long time.
“It’s very cool,” he said. “Playing Michael Jackson is a lot of fun.”
The transition from pop to jazz was a natural thing, added Palmer.
“It’s interesting to see the music in the jazz style because a lot of the songs followed jazz chords already, but they aren’t looked at that way because he sings them in a pop style. It fits though, it works really well,” he said.
Beyond the tribute to the King of Pop, Shirts said the Percussion Ensemble will perform a wide range of selections ranging from latin jazz pianist Michel Camilo to Julius Fucik’s famous march “Thunder & Blazes,” and Russian classical music in in Mikhail Glinka’s “Ruslan & Ludmilla.”
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