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Hampton festival honors
Jazz students, vocal group earn recognition
Thursday, Mar. 3, 2011
VoJazz members with vocalists from The Manhattan Transfer quartet. (Photo by Logan Westom)
PULLMAN - WSU musicians earned honors and enjoyed a private clinic at the recent Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival at the University of Idaho. The festival is one of the largest of its kind in the world, attracting more than 10,000 students annually.
The vocal jazz ensemble VoJazz performed for and participated in a clinic by the Grammy award-winning vocal group The Manhattan Transfer. Dean Luethi, assistant professor and VoJazz director, wrote a grant proposal to the WSU VPLAC (Visual, Performing, Literary Arts Committee) to enable the session.
In addition, students from the Jazz Studies Program at WSU were recognized on College Day at the festival. Master's student and teaching assistant Sarah Lincoln-Cosano, tenor saxophone, and undergraduates David Crow, alto saxophone, and Tanner Brown, bass, received invitations to perform at “Hamp’s Club,” a session featuring the finest student musicians at the festival.
"For many years, WSU students have received top honors and significant recognition at the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival," said Greg Yasinitsky, Regents professor. "This is a tribute to our excellent students, wonderful faculty and excellent School of Music.”
VoJazz performed four songs, which were then used as test beds for ideas that The Manhattan Transfer wished to express to the intimate audience of about 15.
VoJazz includes nine vocalists (including master's student Mackenzie Trail), three instrumentalists and graduate assistants Stan Sabourin and James Kerr.
Lincoln-Cosano studies saxophone with instructor Dave Hagelganz and Yasinitsky. All three of the students recognized at College Day are members of the WSU Jazz Big Band under the direction of Yasinitsky.