MTHS Jazz Band 1 again invited to compete in Essentially Ellington

The Mountlake Terrace High School Jazz Band 1 has been selected as a finalist for the Essentially Ellington Competition & Festival – again – and will be heading to New York for the prestigious event in May.

This is the second year in a row and the eighth time since 2000 that Mountlake Terrace High School has had their top jazz band picked for the competition at Lincoln Center.

“We are all very excited,” said MTHS Band Director Darin Faul. “And we are incredibly grateful for the support and encouragement of so many people in our community.”

“We get to receive the congratulations but do so on behalf of all the people who have helped along the way,” Faul added. “We know full well that this is a community effort and without that community we would not have been successful.”

MTHS Jazz 1 will be one of 15 bands competing at the event May 10-12 in New York City. The finalists were selected from among 109 high school jazz bands nationwide that submitted recordings for adjudication.

MTHS Jazz 1 is one of three Seattle area bands to be named Essentially Ellington finalists this year; joining Mountlake Terrace for the competition – now in its 23rd year – will be jazz bands from Ballard and Roosevelt High Schools.

Mountlake Terrace High School jazz bands have been selected to compete at the Essentially Ellington competition in 2000, 2002, 2005, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2017 and now in 2018. Darin Faul has been the band director at the high school since January 1998.

2017-2018 MTHS Jazz 1 members


Reiden Chea

Caden Hargrave

Benjamin Leonard

Jackson Marrott

Owen Moreland

Reece Newhouse

Raymond Smith



Jacob Knight

Vegard Perander

Solomon Plourd

Ian Rood

Ernesto Torres



Matthew Hipolito

Ethan Pyke

Alexander Raring

Henry Smith-Hunt


Rhythm Section:

Kieran Faris (drums)

Joshua Setala (drums)

Sophia Parsons (bass)

Andrew Vinther (bass)

Dimitrio Neri (piano)

Gian Neri (guitar)

–By Doug Petrowski

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