Arts and Entertainment

Jazzmine readies for annual concert

Former Jazzmine member Kekoa Riggin, front, works with a group of current Jazzmine students on their dance routine for its upcoming show. - Courtesy photo
Former Jazzmine member Kekoa Riggin, front, works with a group of current Jazzmine students on their dance routine for its upcoming show.
— image credit: Courtesy photo

ARLINGTON — Arlington High School’s award-winning jazz choir recently performed at the Pacific Vocal Jazz Festival at Carlson Theatre in Bellevue, ramping up for its big annual concert performances.

Jazzmine was one of three groups invited to perform at the evening show, and placed second overall with two members winning outstanding vocalist awards.

Kena McClure and Brennan Kmet — both seniors — were the winning soloists.

The festival features high school jazz choirs from across Washington state.

About 25 students take part in Jazzmine, which participates in a number of competitive events and concerts each year.

The group’s next performance — “Jazzin’ Around the World” — will take place on two consecutive weekends at the Byrnes Performing Arts Center.

Jazzmine’s show will be held on Feb. 26 and 27 and March 5, 6 and 7.

All shows begin at 7 p.m., with the exception of the March 7, 2 p.m. matinee.

“It’s been fun collecting music from the landscape of songs that represent various places around the world,” said director Lyle Forde. “Arranging the music (and) editing and fitting each song into the show is rewarding. Learning choreography and staging each song is exciting. It is truly and enjoyable experience to put together our creative talents, share our visions, and then experiment to see if we can make the musical puzzle fit together.”

Arlington High School began presenting Jazzmine shows in 1988 as a fundraiser to travel to Australia, and played a role in the school district’s decision to raise funds for the Byrnes Performing Arts Center, Forde said.

“The show has grown from a one-night affair to multiple performances,” he said.

Music ranging from the Beatles and Led Zeppelin to the Cheetah Girls will be performed by Jazzmine during this year’s performance.

For more information, visit www.byrnesperformingarts.org.

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