Cardinals get jazzy, play for Coon Rapids elementary kids

Sporting fedoras and suspenders, mini skirts and red lipstick, members of Coon Rapids High School’s orchestra, band and choir brought the high-spirited days of jazz in the USA to local elementary schools Nov. 20.

Tim Sloneker and Dan Bakkum blow their horns during a jazzy tribute to Duke Ellington.  Photo by Sue Austreng

Tim Sloneker and Dan Bakkum blow their horns during a jazzy tribute to Duke Ellington. Photo by Sue Austreng

The Cardinals’ Jazz Tour was designed not only to entertain and delight young audience members, but to demonstrate to the boys and girls the ways they could play music once they reach middle school.

“This is an opportunity for the kids to hear all the different instruments, to listen to the sounds of the different parts in the choir and to get an idea of what they can do with music, too,” said Michael Watson, CRHS orchestra director and music department leader.

And with selections including a tribute to Duke Ellington and lively renditions of classic Christmas carols, the Jazz Age came to high-spirited life at Hoover, Eisenhower, Sand Creek and Morris Bye elementary schools last week.

“Next year,” Watson said to assembled fifth-graders, “when you get in middle school you can play one of these instruments or sing in the choir. We just want you to know how much fun that is.”

Sue Austreng is at sue.austreng@ecm-inc.com

up arrow