Park City High is "in the mood" for Boston |

Park City High is "in the mood" for Boston

The Park City High School Jazz Band plays the Big Band Sweetheart Dance under the direction of Chris Taylor. Photo credit: Scott Sine/Park Record.

Teens, parents and grandparents danced to the sounds of ’40s swing music performed by the Park City High School Music Department for the second annual Big Band Sweetheart Dance Friday evening. This fundraising event for the music department will help to launch this year’s trip to Boston, which includes competition with other schools as well as instruction by the Boston Pops.

"Everyone’s having such a good time," said Jill Tingley, mother of two high schoolers participating in the event.

Mimicking the sound, attitude and dress for the ’40s era found approval by those who lived and danced to the original tunes. "We all had fun together," said Gerd Holmsen-Aguilar, who enjoyed an evening dancing with her husband, Tony, to familiar tunes of their youth.

"It’s all about attitude we watched films from that era to learn about adding the attitude to the music," said Derek Furch, choir director at PCHS.

According to some of the Varsity Jazz Band members, it was a great experience playing while people danced – to have that live feedback from the audience made it an even more enjoyable experience.

"It was fun to see some of the young girls dancing with my dad," said Penelope Moffett, 15, trumpet player for the jazz band.

After cocktails and dinner, the band played three 45-minute sets from 8 to 11 p.m. with an intermission for raffle drawings.

Keiko Moffett, a freelance special-needs teacher and parent of a PCHS music student, developed the idea for the Big Band dance theme as a way to involve all age groups in this fundraising effort.

"I grew up as a daughter of an orchestra musician in Japan and spent a lot of time in the orchestra pit," said Moffett. "Although I don’t sing or play an instrument, I love to promote music and use my abilities to organize fundraisers like this one to help the school."

Elisa Patterson, 18, student class president at PCHS and a cello player in the orchestra, heads up the fundraising coordination for the trip in April. "This event will help to offset some of the expenses for each member of the music department. We wouldn’t be able to raise enough money to cover all the costs for everyone," said Patterson.

Community businesses as well contributed to the fundraising effort of the event.

Dan’s Supermarket provided sweetheart roses, Leslie Stark at the Eccles Center box office helped with ticket sales while Dave Hollock offered his services with staging. The Yarrow Hotel provided the dance floor, centerpieces, chair covers and a discount on food costs as well as needed staff for the event, according to Irene Williams, conference coordinator for the Yarrow Hotel.

This event is planned for next year with hopes for a similar turnout from the community, according to Moffett.

"My father began involvement in the ’40s music post-WWII in Japan which became a means of providing a connection with the American music culture at that time a healing bridge after the devastation of war. Seeing young and old alike enjoying the same music he would be thrilled!" said Moffett.

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