Three AHS Jazz Band soloists receive awards

Junior Will Bjorndal (drums), junior Matt Tylutki (trumpet), and sophomore Jacob Burkhart (trumpet) were all recognized with outstanding soloist awards at the recent Head of the Lakes Jazz Festival in Duluth. Photo provided

Junior Will Bjorndal (drums), junior Matt Tylutki (trumpet), and sophomore Jacob Burkhart (trumpet) were all recognized with outstanding soloist awards at the recent Head of the Lakes Jazz Festival in Duluth. Photo provided

The 21 members of the AHS Jazz Band recently traveled to Duluth to participate in the 40th annual Head of the Lakes Jazz Festival for the first time. The event featured nearly 20 ensembles from throughout Minnesota and Wisconsin.

The Austin students performed four pieces for a panel of jazz experts. Directed by Bradley Mariska, the ensemble demonstrated a variety of musical styles, including swing, funk, Latin and rock. The judges complimented the students on their authentic style and accuracy. Several students performed solos: Taylor Miland, Josh Irvin and Brad Gerlach soloed on saxophone, with Peter Bjorndal playing a bass solo on “Chops, Don’t Fail Me Now.” Three Austin students were recognized with Outstanding Soloist Awards: Will Bjorndal and Jacob Burkhart for their solos on “Tiger of San Pedro,” and Matt Tylutki for solo trumpet improvisation on “Panic Button.”

Students also attended a performance by the Carl Allen Quartet, a New York based combo that specializes in swing music, and attended sectional clinics to learn technique from professional jazz instructors.

The Jazz Band’s next concert is on April 20, when the band collaborates with the Northwestern Singers for their Spring Jazz Show at the Paramount Theatre.

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