Imagine finding famous jazz stars and singers at your local school! Montpelier’s fifth graders presented the most noted names in jazz in their musical “We Haz Jazz” Monday night at the school’s auditorium to parents, grandparents, and guests.
The story began with Riff (Braden Saneholtz) in search of his idol Thelonious Monk, meeting Louis Armstrong (a convincing Jaret Dye), Billy Holiday, Cab Calloway, Count Basie, Duke Ellington, and Ella Fitzgerald and many others along the way. The students who participated were: Allison Altaffer, Grace Beck, Rowen Beck, Cassie Blosser, Misha Caperton, Kennedy Caudill, Riley Dangler, Nichole Davis, Cole Dewire, Jaret Dye, Kaylee Fleagle, Kaya Fleet, Kyla Fox, Tristen Halferty, Elayna Hasty, Adrianna Konoff, Brinn Miller, Katie Moor, MaKenzie Nemire, Caleb Null, Skyler Parsons, Tyler Phongphiou, Braden Saneholtz, Kamryn Schlosser, Roman Sommer, and Ashtyn Wiyrick, with Zack Murray as light technician, and Justin Wiyrick as stagehand.
Under the direction of music teacher Rosemary Dockery, the students presented a delightful program via song and dance. They also taught their audience about the history of jazz. They were engaging, energetic and enthusiastic, and gave it their all to produce a show that was very enjoyable.
So did the group of jazz musicians and singers ever meet Thelonious Monk? Indeed they did, with Superintendent Jamie Grime making a cameo appearance as the giant of American jazz music.
If the smiles of the departing crowd were any indication, a good time was had by all.
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