I performed with so many talented students in the Honokaa High School Jazz Band while on tour in Hawaii. Here are some of the stories and photos of all the talented kids we worked with on this tour. Thanks to everyone in the Dragon Jazz Band!
Stephanie Orza is a Senior in the Honokaa Jazz Band. She has played the alto saxophone since the seventh grade and maintained as a lead in the band. Stephanie is planning to further her education and major in Graphic Design to later become an Art teacher. Being a part of the band has given her wonderful opportunities and memories. She is grateful to be taught by Gary Washburn, although intimating in reputation he is a wonderful teacher.
Czar Alfred plays the trumpet in the Honoka’a Jazz Band, and has been playing music for 4 years now. “Music means a lot to me, it helps me when times I need it, and turns my frown into a smile.”
Mollie Green is a senior at Honokaa High School. She is the first chair trombone player in the Honokaa Jazz Band and knows several other instruments as well. She hopes to study in Japan and major in Foreign Languages. The Jazz Band has deepened her understanding of music and given her many opportunities to perform in front of diverse audiences.
Zacariah Candelario is a a senior and has played in the Honoka’a Jazz Band for four years. He has been playing the alto saxophone since the seventh grade. Zack says that music to him his way to relax or “go with the flow.” Music helps him with a lot of the things he does. His passion is cars and he loves to work on them. After high school, Zack wants to either go to college and major in mechanical engineering or go to UTI and do automotive training.
Josh Candelario is a junior at Honokaa High & Intermediate School. He is currently a tenor sax player but was previously an alto sax player with the Honoka’a Jazz Band. Josh is a quiet and simple guy, but through music he can express himself, and with the help of Gary Washburn, he is able to do that.
Falyn Sebastian is a senior drummer of the Honoka’a Jazz Band. She has played music since the sixth grade and is passionate about the arts. Falyn is planning to pursue a college education and major in graphic design. Being a member of the jazz band has been a big part of her life as well as her high school career. Music, in her opinion, has bought her priceless opportunities and many great memories.
Kaleb Yamasaki has been part of the Honoka’a Jazz Band since he was in the seventh grade. Music is a huge part Kaleb’s life. It helps him to balance his emotions and, at times, motivates him to go above and beyond his wildest dreams. He plans to attend the University of Portland to major in biology, then chase after his dream of becoming a doctor of medicine. He plans to get admitted to a good medical school to become a general surgeon.
JAMES FRANCIS ALTURA
James Francis Altura has been with the jazz band for six years and has been playing piano for nine years. He also plays guitar, drums, and the violin, and plans to continue songwriting and performing after graduation. Music is his life, and he is incredibly thankful for the opportunities he’s been given from Gary Washburn.
Kelson Pedro is a junior at Honokaa High School and has been a part of the Honokaa Jazz Band as a drummer for 3 years. Music is a big part of what makes Kelson who he is and he is very thankful for the chance to travel and play with Gary Washburn.
Kacy Sanchez is a senior attending Honokaa High School. She’s been in Mr. Washburns class since the 7th grade. Kacy started off playing the trumpet to help with her singing voice & it has developed to the present with no vocal training at all. After she graduates high school, she will head to Vancouver, Washington and attend International Air & Hospitality Academy in December 2019.
Nicolas Altura is the senior bass player for the Honoka’a Jazz Band. He’s studied music since the age of 8 and has been a part of this program for 6 years. Mr. Washburn is an important role model to him and is inspired by his dedication and musical knowledge. Nicolas loves performing and playing for crowds and plans to go to college, possibly pursuing a career in the medical field.
Peyton Todd is a senior at Honoka’a High School and assists the Jazz Band with their performances. Peyton is a singer within the Jazz Band’s sister program, the ensembles class, and is an avid photographer. Music is a huge part of Peyton’s life and she is incredibly thankful for the opportunity and confidence Gary Washburn has instilled in her.
Elijah Lukzen, also known as “Chico,” is a guitar player in the Honokaa Jazz Band. He is a sophomore who has been playing guitar for the past five years. Mr. Washburn inspired him to have a passion for music and has personally taught him many things. Chico has always had the dream since he was five years old to follow his papa and uncle and go into the military, particularly the Air National Guard. He believes that music is his passion and that God gave him this specific talent for a reason.
& JULIE PEREZ-NAVA
Marlito Torrano (left) is a junior in the Honokaa Jazz Band and Dragon Jazz Project. He’s been playing ever since he was in seventh grade and it’s something he’ll always remember. He said the Jazz Band is like his family, loving and caring.
Julie Perez-Nava (right) is a freshman in the Honokaa Jazz Band and Dragon Jazz Project. Julie has been playing the trumpet since fifth grade & it’s something she really enjoys. Music is really important to her and Julie would be a completely different person without it.
Gabby Domingo is a junior at Honokaa High & Intermediate School. He is a tenor sax player from 7th grade to now. Gabby can be very shy at times but can express his feeling in music with the help of Gary Washburn.
Kaylynn Iona is a student in honokaa high and has been in Jazz for about 7 years. She doesn’t like to brag about her talents, but she plays piano, guitar, bass, and a little bit of drums. She is also a vocalist. Music is her therapy and her healer, and Through dark times and depression she speaks her feelings in her music compositions.
Melissa Threlfall is a senior at Honoka’a High and Intermediate School. Having worked under Gary Washburn for 6 years, she joined the Honoka’a Jazz Band her senior year as a roadie and supporter. Actively involved in the Jazz Band’s sister program, the ensembles class, Melissa is a vocalist and plays the piano. She is passionate about the arts, and loves musical theatre in particular. She is endlessly grateful for all the opportunities she has gotten under the direction of Mr. Washburn, and cannot thank him enough for the courage and compassion he has instilled in her. She plans to go to college to pursue a career in musical theatre after graduation.
Gary Washburn grew up and attended public school in Skiatook, Oklahoma. He was very active in music, taking piano lessons and playing in the school band. However, his original career goal was to be in Veterinary Medicine.
But, along the way his brother, Kent (also a graduate of Skiatook HS, class of 1960), got involved in a dance band called The Shadow Lake Eight. Gary was very enthusiastic …