If you weren’t among the 200 or so people in the Chief Sealth International High School auditorium Saturday night, you missed something truly breathtaking in the three-hour, multi-act “Soul Jambalaya” event, a celebration of African-American history (musical and otherwise) to benefit Denny International Middle School musicians. We were there from start to finish, recording video so you can enjoy (or re-enjoy) highlights. Our top clip is the show-opener, the entire Denny-student-performed “The Stolen Ones and How They Were Missed” by Marcia Tate Arunga, explained in this story by Jack Broom from the Seattle Times (WSB partner). From Denny principal Jeff Clark‘s morning-after note today:
I was so proud of the students who performed the scene from our play based on the book, The Stolen Ones and How They Were Missed by Marcia Tate Arunga. Ms. Tate Arunga — and the many talented artists she brought with her — did a beautiful job working with our students and community; we are very grateful for their time and many talents. Thank you also to Ms. Patricia Rangel, who coordinated all the details of this play so effectively.
Under the direction of Denny music-program leader Marcus Pimpleton, who put together “Soul Jambalaya,” the Denny Jazz Band wowed the crowd too:
Pimpleton also leads the band program at Sealth, whose Jazz Band 2 was featured as well – here’s one of their numbers (with soloists identified at the end of the clip):
Sealth’s drummer guested with Septimus, a veteran Seattle group that was among the non-student acts on the bill:
Septimus was in reggae mode for that song, though they also played some blues; a pure reggae performer was on the program, too, even more reggae from Jamaican native Clinton Fearon:
The brothers-and-sisters group Oliver Generations of Faith brought their own style to the Sealth stage:
While Marcus Pimpleton joked to the audience toward show’s end, “You got $10,000 worth of music,” admission was free, and voluntary donations were collected for Denny musicians’ upcoming California travel. (You can still donate – here’s where to send a check.) Two more acknowledgments from principal Clark’s post-show note:
I would like to express my sincere thanks to everyone who came last night to support the students at Denny and Sealth at our Soul Jambalaya event. The event was a huge success! …
This whole event was the creation of Mr. Marcus Pimpleton, who, as he always does, did a phenomenal job pulling together such a fantastic event. Mr. Pimpleton has a team of volunteers who help with set up, backstage, and with countless other things–thank you, volunteers. Last night, Mr. Pimpleton said, “This is what being an International School is all about.” I absolutely agree. Thank you, Mr. Pimpleton, for all that you do for our children, our school, and our community!