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Jazz Orchestra Places First at Festival

The Valley Jazz Orchestra performs at the SCIBA Jazz Festival.

The Valley Jazz Orchestra earned first place at the SCIBA Jazz Festival Dec. 13 at Waukee High School. More than 50 bands around the state performed as part of the event, with 1A and 4A groups performing in Waukee and 2A and 3A bands gathering at Winterset.

Valley musicians Matthew Nicholson, Sam Anderson, Cole Petersen, Taylor Igram, Noah Welch, and Dev Thaker were named outstanding soloists. The orchestra’s first-place finish gives the group the opportunity to perform at the Iowa Jazz Championships March 31 at the Des Moines Civics Center.

The Valley Jazz Ensemble and VSW Basie Band also shined with outstanding performances at the SCIBA Jazz Festival. Noah Dorsett of the Valley Jazz Ensemble and Cole McCann, Josh Buelow, Mitch O’Meara, Catherine Larson, Samantha Shea, Elliot Thornton, and Matt Wharff from Valley Southwoods were also named outstanding soloists.