Wednesday, November 16, 2016

ILMEA District 8 Jazz 2016

Last Saturday at Rochelle Township High School the top jazz students of ILMEA District 8 participated in this years Jazz Festival. Genoa-Kingston had 5 students who earned spots within the two instrumental groups. In Jazz Band II there was Christina Lopez on Tenor Sax, Alex Barton on Trombone and both Zach Edwards and Halle Brynteson on Trumpet. In the Honors Jazz Band, Senior section leader, Connor Hansen represented GK in the trumpet section for the 2nd year in a row. We also had GK Jazz Bass player, Katie Sosnowski make the Vocal Jazz group.

In Jazz Band II they were under the direction of Kevin Schoenboch who is a director in the Oswego High School @OHSpantherBands. He is an accomplished trombone player and Jazz and Concert Band Director. They performed a slower swing song, "Sugar" arranged by Mark Taylor, "Indigo Hippo" by Michael Collins-Downden and a Count Basie standard and GK favorite, "Switch in Time."

The Honors Jazz Band was directed by Dr. Sam Fagaly who is the Director of Jazz Studies at Eastern Illinois University. Dr. Fagaly is also an professor for applied saxphone and has an extensive performance background. The Honors Jazz Band performed "Alright, OK, You Win" arranged my Sammy Nestico, "Flotation" by Les Hooper, the ILMEA All-State piece "State Line Strut" by Ellen Rowe and "Skyhawk" by Fred Sturm.

Even though the concert seems early at 4PM, it is a really long day for both students and directors. It is always great to see dedicated jazz students from all across northwestern Illinois working together to put on a concert in 1/2 a day. GKHS was represented well with respectful students who were prepared to play the music.  Music for next years auditions is already on the GKHS Band Website. Check it out!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

ILMEA District 8 Auditions 2016

This saturday GK had a successful day at Huntley Middle School in DeKalb for the 2016 ILMEA auditions. Students were dressed to impress and ready to sing and play their hearts out for some judges. This year was the first year of all blind auditions for the high school, so it really didn't matter if they were dressed to the nines or like Sully from Monsters Inc. 
Joely ran in the Harvard CC meet where GK Grils placed 2nd.
She then 'ran' over to DeKalb for her audtion!

I am happy to announce the following students who made it into the ILMEA District 8 Concert Band and Jazz Bands!

Concert Band:
Jess Kurpius - Flute
Christina Lopez - Bass Clarinet
Jayna Masters - Clarinet
Hannah Temes - Clarinet

Jazz Band:
Christina Lopez - Tenor Sax
Connor Hansen - Trumpet
Zach Edwards - Trumpet
Halle Brynteson - Trumpet
Alex Barton - Trombone

The District 8 Jazz Concert will be on November 12th at 4PM at Rochelle Township High School and the District 8 Band Concert will be on November 19th at 7PM at DeKalb High School. Please feel free to come out and support those students and the hard work they've put in.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

2016 ILMEA All-State

Congratulations to the following:

Tim Sullivan for making ILMEA All-State Jazz on Trumpet for the second year in a row!

Tommy Corbett was also selected to participate in the FMES (Future Music Educators Seminar) 

Both will be going down to Peoria for the ILMEA All-State Festival in January.

ILMEA District 8

Congratulations to the following people for making ILMEA District 8 Band and Jazz Bands!

District 8 Concert Band:
  • Jess Kurpius-Flute
  • Jayna Masters-Clarinet
  • Hannah Temes-Clarinet
  • Christina Lopez-Bass Clarinet
  • Tim Sullivan -Trumpet
  • Tommy Corbett- Trombone
  • Collin Stratton- Baritone
District 8 Jazz Band:
  • Katey Kurpius-Alto Sax
  • Alison Pacey-Tenor Sax
  • Tommy Corbett - Trombone
  • Kendyl Strack - Bass Trombone
  • Jackson Shortridge - Bass
  • Brendyn Sonntag - Piano
District 8 Honors Jazz Band:
  • Tim Sullivan-Trumpet
  • Connor Hansen - Trumpet
  • Nick Strauch - Bari Sax

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Jerry Williams Clinic with GK Jazz

On Tuesday, September 23rd the Jazz Ensemble welcomed guest artist, Jerry Williams to clinic the band during rehearsal.  Mr. Williams is a Chicago native, professional musician and NIU student. He was able to open the bands eyes for a better understand of Jazz Style. He worked with the whole band and demonstrated stellar interpretations of the stylistic nuances of Basie, Ellington and Horace Silver.

Mr. Williams was also able to gives a taste of a well seasoned improviser as it took a few choruses on the Horace Silver tune "Filthy McNasty." He displayed his confident understanding of the blues scale and how to form a melodic and tasteful solo from the original melody.

Time really flies when your having fun and that period flew by! The GK Jazz Ensemble students obviously enjoyed and appreciated his presence and seemed to gain a great deal of understanding through this session. 

Thanks Jerry for your time!

Monday, December 9, 2013

IMEA All-State Success!!!

I would like to announce and congratulate the following GKHS students for making down to IMEA this year.

Senior Alyssa Edwards for making All-State Orchestra. This is her second time making All-State. Last year she made the band

Senior Katie Thurlby for making All-State Choir.  This is also her second time making All-State Choir

Senior Rebecca Whittenhall for making All-State Choir. First time making All-State Choir but she will be performing in the Illinois High School Theater Festival All-State Theater production of "Grapes of Wrath" which she auditioned for and made earlier in the year. Shows are performed early in January. Busy month!

Junior Alex Siknsa for being selected for the Future Music Educators Seminar (FMES). This is a program where students who are contemplating Music Education as a career will spend three days in during the festival learning about the different components of the profession and how to prepare for it.

Congratulations! Great representation by GK!

IMEA All-State festival takes place in Peoria from January 22-25 with concerts on Saturday the 25th.


Friday, November 22, 2013

IMEA Success!

Illinois Music Education Association or ILMEA (formerly IMEA) is an organization which promotes life long music making and provides leadership in music education. Every year they hold auditions were students from all over the state audition to make it into All-District bands,choirs and orchestras and then eventually All-State bands, choirs and orchestras. After auditions, students who made the respective district ensembles play in a concert together with guest conductors. Further into the year the very elite student musicians are selected to be the All-State band which is made up of students from all 9 Districts within Illinois.

This year we had quite a number of students audition for these ensembles. We had the pleasure of sending the following instrumentalists to their respective festivals:

District 8/2 Orchestra
Alyssa Edwards - Clarinet

District 8 Band
Brandon Trupp - Trombone
Jess Kurpius - Flute

District 8 Jazz Band
Alex Siksna - Alto sax 1
Tommy Corbett - Trombone 1
Galen Hughes - Trumpet 4
Rebecca Whittenhall - Drumset

District 8 Honors Jazz Band
Nick Strauch - Tenor Sax 2
Brandon Trupp - Trombone 3
Tim Sullivan - Trumpet 3 

All three festivals have taken place already and were a great success. Our GKHS students represented the school and the community well. Now we play the waiting game for All-State results.  Final All-State selections should be out in the next few weeks and only Juniors and Seniors are eligible. Updates will soon follow.