[Dixielandjazz] Sun Valley Festival
Vaxtrpts at aol.com
Vaxtrpts at aol.com
Sun Oct 23 00:39:15 PDT 2005
It just dawned on me, that other than talking about DJML "face to face"
meetings, there isn't much said on this list about festivals.
I have been in Sun Valley all week. It is a beautiful place and this
festival has to be one of the best two or three in the country for "more
traditional" forms of jazz. There is a great mix of traditional bands, swing bands,
big bands, show bands and even some vocal jazz. The musicians are taken care
of better at this festival than any other that I know. Of course the pay
isn't great, but we are put up in very nice places and there is a special
restaurant (GREAT food) open from 11:00 AM to 11:00 PM with free food for the
musicians. So - that does help with the finances. The festival has gotten so
successful that it now starts on Tuesday night with a free concert for anyone who
would like to come, and goes through Sunday night.
The festival is run by people who do understand how to keep the musicians
Every venue is packed. This has to be one of the most successful festivals,
I would love to see them pay the musicians a little more, but we have made
our bed on the festival circuit and I guess we must lay in it.
One of the most popular concerts happened this morning. About 50 of the
musicians from all the bands joined together to play Sousa Marches. It is one
of the most popular concerts of all, at the festival. And -- the musicians
have a great time doing it.
Another innovation that they have done here, is that we have a jazz class
running concurrently with the festival. Teachers are getting a unit of
continuing education credit from Idaho State University.
I am the coordinator of the classes and the teachers have been:
Steve Lilly - St. Louis Rivermen
Dave Ruffner - Blue Street
Bill Clark - Queen City Jazz Band
Jeanne Kitrell - St. Louis Rivermen
The head sound person for the festival, and others.
It is going very well and the students range in age from high schools
students to retired teachers and principals.
Being a "roving guest artist" besides running the continuing ed classes, I
have had a chance to play with High Sierra, Sun Valley Jazz, Chet Jaegger and
Nightblooming Jazzmen, the all star big band, the Swing Design Big Band from
Holland, the Kings of Swing Big Band from Boise, and a few others. Great Fun!
Anyway, I just thought I would make a little report from the festival in
case any of you are interested.
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