May 3 fundraiser to help Edmonds CC Salsa Band travel to Puerto Rico

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The Edmonds CC Jazz and Salsa Band heats up the college’s theatre with the sounds of salsa during salsa dance nights dubbed Club Caja Negra, or The Black Box Club. (Photo courtesy Edmonds Community College)

The Edmonds Community College Jazz and Salsa Band students will travel to San Juan, Puerto Rico, in January to listen to and learn la musica salsa from world-renowned salsa musicians during the San Sebastian Street Festival, one of the largest festivals in Puerto Rico.

“These opportunities to experience Caribbean music and culture first hand are invaluable for enriching the sounds and feel of our salsa band,” said Edmonds CC band instructor John Sanders. “The authenticity of our band’s sound can be traced to wonderful clinicians and teachers we have here in the Northwest, but also due to our exposure through travel to the sources of salsa.”

Sanders has first-hand knowledge of the impact travel can have on the student musicians’ musical appreciation and performance. In 2017, he traveled with the band to Havana, Cuba.

The band currently holds quarterly on-campus salsa dance nights dubbed Club Caja Negra, or The Black Box Club, in the college’s Black Box Theatre, where they delight dancers with authentic salsa music from the cha-cha to the mambo.

During the trip to Puerto Rico, the student musicians will have the opportunity to visit two music schools for workshops and performances, and then spend the last few days of the trip in Old San Juan to attend concerts and workshops at the San Sebastian Festival.

Want to help the Edmonds CC Jazz and Salsa Band get to Puerto Rico?

Attend the band’s To Puerto Rico! fundraising event at 7 p.m. Friday, May 3, in the college’s Black Box Theatre. Attendees will be treated to salsa dance lessons, performances by the Jazz and Salsa Band, and a silent auction. Tickets are $25 and include a beverage.

According to Sanders, the viability of the Puerto Rico trip depends on fundraising contributions. The band is trying to raise about $30,000 toward the costs for about 16 students.

For more information, contact Sanders at [email protected] or 425-640-1748.

The band also currently holds quarterly on-campus salsa dance nights dubbed Club Caja Negra, or The Black Box Club, in the college’s Black Box Theatre, where they delight dancers with authentic salsa music from the cha-cha to the mambo. Check the Edmonds CC events calendar for upcoming dates.

For a campus map and directions, go to edcc.edu/campus.

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