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St. James Concerts present Jazz@8

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Date(s) - 02/26/2017
3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

The Red Church-St. James Episcopal


In this, the second concert in the 2016-2017 season, the St. James Concert Series welcomes Jazz @ 8 and the winners of the Sierra Music Scholarships.

Jazz @ 8 is a select group of advanced vocal students from Summerville High School and Connections Academy. The group started in 1989 with members of Summerville High’s Jazz Choir, brought together and directed by Jim Wells.

This group has received numerous awards over the years, including first-place finishes in the Reno International Jazz Festival, the Folsom Jazz Festival, and the R.A.V.E.S Festival in Redding. In addition, they have received Superior Ratings in Festivals throughout the Western United States, and the last two years have brought them Command Performance Awards at the Santa Cruz Vocal Jazz Festival. This ensemble was one of three groups from the U. S. invited twice to participate in MusicFest Canada (Canadian National Festival) in Toronto and Vancouver, B. C. In 2011, they were invited to perform at the White House for the Christmas tree lighting.

Their repertoire includes jazz standards and contemporary works, as well as genres such as classical, blues, folk, rock and world music. Jazz @ 8 performs locally all year long supporting local businesses, events, service groups, and veterans. Some of the events are the Bach Festival, annual Christmas events, Veterans Day and Memorial Day events throughout the county, Columbia College Vocal Jazz Festival, and singing for local elementary schools. This year, Jazz @ 8 has been invited to participate in the Valley Talent Project (formerly Valley’s Got Talent), at The Gallo Center for The Arts in Modesto. They are proud, excited and honored to participate in the St. James Concert Series.

Among the selections they have chosen for this concert are Bach’s Air on a G String, Duke Ellington’s Bli-Blip, Hallelujah by Cohen, Gloria by Vivaldi, and Fly Me to the Moon by Howard.

James Wells, Director of Jazz @ 8, started his teaching career at Twain Harte School in 1970 where he taught classroom music, Band, Jazz Band and Choir. In 1980, he took the reins from retiring Bill Crawford, a long-time music teacher at Summerville High.

While at Summerville, Mr. Wells taught nine classes: Freshman Choir, Choir, Varsity Choir A (Women ) and Varsity Choir B (Men), two sections of Advanced Jazz Choir (Ladies 1st and Jazz @ 8), Concert Band, Jazz Band, and Music Appreciation. The performing groups attended festivals throughout California and the Western U. S. In addition, he was responsible for Pep Bands at all home football and basketball games and Marching Band for several local parades each year.

Tickets available: The Mountain Bookshop at the Junction in Sonora, by calling 536-0825, or at the door.