PacificArts Association

Published on Thu, Jan 4, 2007 by andy Wolf

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Pacific Arts Association

By Sandy Wolf


Thanks to generosity of the people in Blaine, the wonderful cooperation of the Blaine school district, the enthusiastic support of many people in Bellingham and surrounding areas, and superb artistic advice from key people like Blaine’s Joseph Robinson and Martin Kuuskmann, 2006 was an exciting year for the Pacific Arts Association with many temporal and one extraordinarily beautiful permanent result.

Through our jazz festival, we nurtured the musical skills of nearly 100 teens, and throughout the year succeeded in bringing multiple performing artists of national and international distinction to our little seaside town, significantly contributing to increased tourism in Blaine.

Most importantly, we gave to Blaine her most distinctive image – Bob McDermott’s Vigil Sculpture. In addition, five representatives of the PAA attended the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival, the largest educational jazz festival in the world.

Our concerts included The Taylor/Kuuskmann Project with multiple Grammy-winning David Taylor; Pavlo including a performance by Jacob Hillard, a Blaine student recently admitted to the Berklee School of Music.Our concerts also included two outstanding performances by the Louisiana Repertory Jazz Ensemble; A String of Pearls with vocals by Greta Matassa who recently earned rave reviews in the Los Angeles Times; and the first performance in Blaine by the full Bellingham Festival of Music Chamber Orchestra, which includes players from the finest music ensembles in the world.

December 10, we concluded 2006 with Noel, a Christmas concert with Jill Whitman formerly of Winter Harp. Grants from the city of Blaine and the city of Bellingham helped to make this all possible.

Plans for next year
In 2007 the Pacific Arts Association promises to bring again a world of art to our shores. We’ll continue selling bricks and plaques for the Vigil Project; present our seventh Jazz Festival July 8-15; and produce an exciting array of concerts, one including dance and one featuring live music accompanying silent film.

In March, the Ciompi Quartet will perform with Joe Robinson, former principal oboe with the New York Philharmonic and Ted DeCorso, clarinet. In May, the Faust Project will bring to us Daniel Schnyder, saxophone; Kenny Drew Jr., piano; and Dave Taylor, trombone.

In July, Listen to the Rhythm will feature Cuban and Brazilian music and dance. July will also bring concerts of Cole Porter music with Greta Matassa and our all-star jazz faculty playing Jazz Standards.

Another evening our jazz faculty will present contemporary jazz on the Village Green in Fairhaven.

We’ll again conclude our jazz festival with a concert showcasing our most advanced students.

The Arctic Chamber Orchestra will be our guest next fall, and we’ll conclude 2007 with a Christmas concert to be announced.