All That Jazz vocal jazz festival, featuring world class musicians set for Feb. 24 at Greene Co. High School

Staff Report

The second annual All That Jazz vocal jazz festival will take place Friday, Feb. 24 at the Greene County High School.

The entertaining event will feature a visit from a pair of world class vocal jazz clinicians and performers.

Kate Reid from Miami, and Charlie Christenson from Boston will visit the Greene County High School for a clinic and concert format. They will spend the day as clinicians working with groups from several high schools that have registered for the event.

Jazz singer and pianist Dr. Kate Reid’s bio is extensive. She is an associate professor of jazz voice in the Studio Music and Jazz department and director of Jazz Vocal Performance at the University of Miami Frost School of Music. Reid earned a B.M. in Jazz Studies from Western Michigan University, a M.M. and D.M.A. in Jazz Vocal Performance from the University of Miami.
Reid is a working studio/session singer in Los Angeles. Her film credits include Tinkerbell: Legend of the Neverbeast, Planes, Star Trek Into Darkness, Oz-The Great and Powerful, Epic and Men In Black III. She has lent her voice to network television series, commercial spots for Ace Hardware, T-Mobile, Suntory Whiskey and backing vocals for artists MUSE, X Japan and Josh Groban. Kate co-authored the GLEE Vocal Method book for Hal Leonard publishing with Producer/author Andy Waterman of Umbrella media.

Dr. Charlie Christenson also boasts an impressive background. He is an associate professor of music in Berklee College of Music’s Voice Department. As a vocalist, keyboardist, and songwriter, he has continually challenged the status quo and forged his own aesthetic path. He is equally at home playing, singing, and improvising in a wide array of contemporary styles, particularly rock, R&B, folk, and jazz (all of which are represented in the working bands which he has led in Minneapolis, Miami and New York). His recordings can be found on Spotify and Apple Music, released independently and through the New York-based label Biophilia Records.
Prior to joining the Berklee faculty, Christenson taught at the University of Southern Maine, the University of Miami, and for six years served as the head of the Voice Department and director of the graduate program at the McNally Smith College of Music. His doctoral project, “A Study of Vocal Technique Through the Development of Four Advanced Etudes for Jazz and Contemporary Vocalists” was completed in spring 2020, and the first expanded collection of original voice etudes derived from this research is nearing completion for publication.
The clinicians will work 40 minute sessions with jazz choirs from schools around the state, including Perry, Kuemper Catholic, Council Bluffs Thomas Jefferson, Waukee Northwest, Spirit Lake, Storm Lake, Des Moines Roosevelt, ADM and MVAOCOU.

In the event finale later that night,  a concert will be held in the GCHS auditorium leading off with Greene County’s own Ram Jive, followed by the featured guests, Reid and Christenson, who are both highly accomplished and sought after jazz vocalists and pianists.

“This is an incredible opportunity for our community to see some truly top notch musicians right here in our own backyard, at a price you wouldn’t find anywhere else,” said Dave Heupel, Greene County High School vocal music teacher.

Tickets will be available at the door for $10, with the concert beginning at 7 p.m.

“This is an event that is made possible by our new facilities,” Heupel said. “I know the hope was that with this new auditorium, we could bring in nationally sought after performers, and this fits that description exactly.”
The Ram Jive, Greene County’s jazz choir, was recently awarded straight I ratings at the state Iowa High School Jazz Choir festival, held Feb. 6 at the Greene County High School.
Additionally, GCHS recently announced that the quartet of Olivia Hoyt, Ava Schilling, Gavin VanderLinden and Rasmus Villebro have been chosen to sing the national anthem at the Iowa High School state track meet May 18 at Drake Stadium in Des Moines. The foursome were selected to the 2022 All-State chorus.

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