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|Paynesville Press - March 23, 2005|
Sixth Grade Choir stages musical, "We Haz Jazz!"
The Sixth Grade Choir from Paynesville Area Middle School presented, "We Haz Jazz!," a mini-musical about the history of jazz, on Monday, March 14, in the school auditorium.|
The PAMS Sixth Grade Choir presented the musical "We Haz Jazz!" on Monday, March 14, in the school auditorium.
The story followed Riff (Mitchell Meed), a jazz lover, not just a jazz liker, as he attempted to introduce his peers to jazz music. A host of jazz greats - Charlie Parker (Devin Koerner), Tommy Dorsey (Ethan Brown), Benny Goodman (Kristine Hoeft), Ma Rainey (MaKayla Gottwald), Louis Armstrong (Matthew Lenzmeier), Dizzy Gillespie (Travis Hislop), Count Basie (Garrett Thompson), Billie Holiday (Kristyn Osterhaus), Duke Ellington (Kirsten Landmark-Masih), Bessie Smith (Briana Soine), Joe Oliver (Matthew Doom), Ella Fitzgerald (Kayla Youngs), Mary Lou Williams (Katrina Haagenson), and Thelonius Monk (Josh Buermann) - came to life to help Riff introduce jazz to his peers.
Sixth graders worked on the music since Christmas and chose speaking parts in January, said director Cheryl Bungum. The sixth grade boys (below) normally meet with Bungum for 20 minutes on Mondays, all the choir members normally meet with her for 20 minutes on Wednesdays, and the sixth grade girls (below, right) normally meet with her for 20 minutes on Fridays.
"I was happy with how they did with their limited amount of rehearsal time," said Bungum. "I was pleased with how they pulled this together. It's fun to see up-and-coming talent."
Bungum was thankful for the extra rehearsal time teachers allowed the choir in preparation of the mini-musical. The Sixth Grade Choir also performed their dress rehearsal in front of the Seventh and Eighth Grade Choir.
This winter, both choirs at the middle school presented separate musicals instead of a March concert. The musicals allowed students to experience a stage production and start to understand stage directions and voice projection, both speaking and singing, said Bungum.
Both the Sixth Grade Choir and the Seventh and Eighth Grade Choir will perform in public next at a concert on Monday, May 23.
Below right: Everyone bowed when Thelonius Monk (Josh Buermann) came on stage at the end of the musical.
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