Arts and Entertainment

Jazzmine presents ‘Blast to the Past’

Back row from left, Danielle Parker, Brittany Craig and Taylor Smith, middle row from left, Amanda Wreggelsworth and Hannah Williams and front row from left, Mackenzie Hayes, Ashley Hudson and Katie Couch sing and dance their hearts out at Jazzmine’s Blast from the Past continuing with three more shows this weekend, at 7:30 p.m. March 6 and 7 and at 2 p.m. Sunday, March 8.   - Courtesy photo
Back row from left, Danielle Parker, Brittany Craig and Taylor Smith, middle row from left, Amanda Wreggelsworth and Hannah Williams and front row from left, Mackenzie Hayes, Ashley Hudson and Katie Couch sing and dance their hearts out at Jazzmine’s Blast from the Past continuing with three more shows this weekend, at 7:30 p.m. March 6 and 7 and at 2 p.m. Sunday, March 8.
— image credit: Courtesy photo

ARLINGTON — Jazzmine is blasting back to music of the twenties and working forward through the contemporary sounds of 2009 in the Arlington High School’s vocal jazz ensemble’s dramatic musical stage show which opened last weekend and continues one more weekend at the Byrnes Performing Arts Center.

Jazzmine is a jazz choir with a reputation across the greater Pacific Northwest for its exciting musical performances. They have performed nationally and occasionally even internationally, said their choir director Lyle Forde.

“Jazzmine has received numerous awards at jazz festivals and competitions, the most recent being the North Texas University Jazz Festival where they earned a first place award,” Forde said.

Their biggest musical project each year though is the annual Jazzmine show. Formerly a dinner show, Jazzmine now enjoys the professional feel of the BPAC stage.

This year’s show takes the audience back in time to the music of the roaring 1920s to the jazz standards of big band era and the music of the silver screen.

The show continues with the sounds of Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly and others who helped usher in the rock-n-roll of poodle skirts and bobby sox.

Even though they are a jazz choir, they delve into the folk sounds of Bob Dylan, Peter, Paul & Mary, and Simon and Garfunkel to share the flavor of the early 1960s.

The classic rock songs of the ‘70s and ‘80s can’t be shared without the tunes of Saturday Night Fever and other disco dancing.

“The music of the ‘90s and present day popular music adds a contemporary touch to the show,” Forde said.

Billed as “Hot Java and Cool Jazz,” jazz played by local instrumentalists and vocalists will fill the 45 minutes prior to show time when complimentary coffee will be served with desserts for sale. The pre-show performing artists included this week are jazz singer Becky Foster with former White House pianist Herb Hamilton on Friday; singer Laurie Swanson and trio on Saturday; and jazz singer/pianist Jose Gonzales on Sunday.

The pre-show warm-up begins at 6:45 p.m. with the main event opening at 7:30 each evening and the Sunday afternoon matinee on March 8 begins at 2 p.m. with the pre-show music starting at 1:15 p.m.

Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students available in advance at the Byrnes Performing Arts Center Web site, www.byrnesperformingarts.org, with on-line service fees included in the ticket price. For those without access to the Web, tickets can also be purchased with help from the fine folks at “Flowers by George” in Arlington.

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