Kingsford High jazz band performs for Golden K

The Kingsford High School jazz band, under the direction of Ben Sherk, performed for the Golden K Club. At left, from left, are Katherine Erickson, piano; Mario Occhietti, drums; Kyra Peters, xylophone; Marcus Kazianka, drums; and Bryce Robinson, guitar. In front are saxophone players Logan Smith, Meryl Luoma-Mannisto, Kate Cook, Layla Rivera, Ann Grider and Mackenzie Rundell. In the second row are Eli Sulin, guitar; and on trombones, Daniel Peterson, Jaron Hudson, Josh Benz and Ben Stanish. In back are trumpets Kim Martin, Luisa Munoz-Ozzello, Kyla Gauthier, Connor Morgan and Zack Rankin.

Living in the Upper Peninsula, one prepares for weather changes on a daily basis. Looking out on a white landscape, it seems appropriate to lay the Easter bonnet next to the Stormy Kromer hat and be ready to switch the Easter basket for a snow shovel.

Monday morning, things quickly began to change at the Golden K meeting. Young people began setting up with instruments. Soon chairwoman Sharon Scholke changed the format to accommodate these Kingsford High School jazz band students, with Ben Sherk as director.

Golden K members settled in for the performance — and what a performance it was. Knowing their practice schedules and other studies, these young people always astonish with their musical talent and love for sharing their music.

Sherk has a way to blend his students together, from freshmen to seniors, into an outstanding musical family. Wherever these students perform — for family, school functions or competitions — they give it their all and obviously enjoy every moment.

Music included rock, ballad, swing, jazz and Latin songs. “I Wanna Be Like You;” “The Jazz Police In a Sentimental Mood” from 1935; the band’s choice, “Tiger in San Pedro;” and ending with “Feelin The Funk.”

Instrumental soloists included Bryce Robinson, guitar; Kim Martin, trumpet; Meryl Luoma-Mannisto, alto sax; Kyra Peters, vibraphone; Logan Smith, tenor sax; Kyla Gauthier, trumpet; and Daniel Peterson, trombone.

The jazz band in its entirety does an outstanding job playing together as though they had done that for years. The band received a well-deserved standing ovation for this impressive performance. They represented their school and community proudly.

Birthday wishes to Vance Uhazie on April 19 and Bob Tachick on April 20. Diane Aune took home the winnings from the 50-50 drawing. Just give Alyce Derwinski a piano — whatever size, type, electrical or not — and she will make music. Jim Verrette jumped in to direct and the GK members got a couple songs fit into a topsy-turvy day.

The program Monday will be about the Verleys’ alpaca business, Rainbow’s End in Norway. All are welcome in the Fellowship Hall at the First Presbyterian Church, with meetings beginning at 10 a.m. and the programs scheduled for 10:30. The Golden Throats will sing Wednesday at Evergreen Senior Living in Kingsford.


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