In the bright, early hours of Tuesday, May 17th, the Brentwood College Jazz Band set out to do battle with the best and brightest young musicians in the country at the annual MusicFest Canada in Richmond, BC. After a few minor setbacks, such as almost abandoning Chan P, our Second Trumpet, we set off to a rambunctious chorus of “Party in the U.S.A.” by Miley Cyrus. It seemed an appropriate time to appreciate the classics.
Arising the next morning with an excessive amount of whining from the rhythm section, we took the stage and blew the judges away with our bombastic renditions of “Old Devil Moon,” “Willow Weep for Me,” and “Mambo Jambo.” In the end, we garnered a Silver Award, and Jon H took home the ensemble’s honour award. Our adjudicator, a teacher from Humber College in Toronto, praised our infectious energy.
Of course, the important part was not winning or basking in the praise of the judges: it was making lifelong memories with our friends. I, for one, recall fondly the image of Jon enhancing his festival programme in the middle of the Yamaha Brass Quintet performance. His grin of contentment serves as a fond reminder to appreciate the simple things in life. Damian P, too, brought laughter as he pranced down the bustling streets of Richmond happily playing his shiny, red recorder.
Next year, the Jazz Band aims for Gold, although they will have to do so without graduating members Kevin D, Jon, and myself. I have faith, however, that this ensemble has yet to reach its true potential; Gold is within our grasp, provided Chan remembers to get on the bus next year.
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