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Musicians collaborate for concert on the lawn

Mark Aug. 15 for free event

The White Salmon Valley Education Foundation invites the community to "Music on the Lawn," an evening concert in White Salmon's Rheingarten Park.

The free concert will be on Friday, Aug. 15, from 6-9 p.m.

The evening's entertainment will include, from 6 to 7 p.m., Victor Johnson. Johnson is an award winning writer, musician, performer and producer from the Pacific Northwest specializing in traditional styles of acoustic music and storytelling for kids and families.

Raised by folk and blues revivalists of the 60's, Johnson grew up listening to the music of Woody Guthrie, Leadbelly, John Hurt and Rev. Gary Davis.

"We used to live in this house where all kinds of people would come over and make music in our living room. The music would go late into the night. I would sneak out of my room, make a bed in the hallway and listen to the music coming through the heating vent like radio. My shows are like it was when I was a kid. People getting together having fun making music, singing, dancing or just enjoying being in the middle of it all," Johnson said.

In 2003, Johnson started focusing on music for kids that the whole family could enjoy. Since then he has become one of the premier family acts in the Pacific Northwest and has a growing international reputation for making cool kid music.

From 7:30 to 9 p.m. will be the Camarata Columbia.

Camarata Columbia is a fantastic group of local professional musicians that have collaberated together to provide an evening of classical, Broadway and jazz music! The Musicians include:Melissa Arndt (voilin), Tova Cochrane (cello), Charlie Escher (bass), Karen Eddleman-Hunley (piano and flute), Dustin Hunley (piano and voice), Joshua Kingsley (clarinet), and Omar Sankari (drums).

Arndt began playing violin when she was four years old with the encouragement of her violin teaching mother. She learned through the Suzuki method followed by six years in the Everett Youth Symphony where she held the position of principal violin and soloist. Ardnt attended St. Olaf College and was a double major in economics and Norwegian.

She continued to play her violin throughout college as a first violinist with the St. Olaf Orchestra which toured both here and abroad. Since that time, she has played in the Burnsville Symphony, Georgetown Symphony, Edmonds Symphony, and Columbia Gorge Sinfonietta.

Cochrane grew up playing cello in Boise, Idaho. After proving her worth playing in public school programs and festivals, Cochrane was given her grandmother's well-loved John Juzek cello, the one being played for the concert. She won second prize in the Idaho State Solo Contest her senior year of high school.

After high school, she went on to become principal cellist at Whitman College and third chair cellist of the Walla Walla Symphony. Now she plays in the Columbia Gorge Sinfonietta and also enjoys making chamber music. She also enjoys many other musical genres as well and is quite an accomplished improviser.

Escher has lived in Bingen for the last 20 years. He regularly plays electric upright bass on the festival and winery circuits with Joanie's Jazz Trio, and also appears occasionally with All Jazzed Up, the Ed Swick Trio, Sam Salter Sextet, Django's Cadillac, and numerous other working Gorge bands.

He has worked for over 30 years as an audio engineer, mixing many world class acts and repairing, modifying, and building professional musical electronics gear. He also plays fretless bass, guitar, guitar synthesizer, and vocalizes in his jazz fusion/rock/techno band, 'Passing Wind'.

Eddleman-Hunley received a bachelor's degree in piano and flute from Florida State University, a master's in piano performance from The Manhattan School of Music, and spent eight seasons at The Aspen Music Festival as a scholarship student of Herbert Stessin of The Juilliard School.

After graduation, she moved to Buenos Aires, Argentina, to collaborate on chamber music projects with fellow students from Aspen. After winning first prize in two national competitions, her ensemble was awarded the Pao Casals cultural exchange scholarship for six weeks of study and performances in Barcelona, Spain. While living in Argentina, Karen discovered a passion for Argentine tango music. She returned to the U.S. to tour with the eleven-piece orchestra in what would become the Broadway hit, "Forever, Tango!" for two years which included Sony label soundtrack recording credits.

Other tango shows followed, including "Tango, Vivo!" in Los Angeles, and "Tango Camerata" and "Extasis" in Denver. She also has performed in and directed a variety of other shows with organizations including Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Walt Disney World entertainment, and Queen Elizabeth II and Carnival cruise lines.

Eddleman-Hunley has also worked as staff accompanist at the University of Denver and Wagner College, Staten Island. A very active participant in the Santa Fe, NM, professional music scene, she was a member of the Canticum Novum Chamber Orchestra, rehearsal pianist and orchestral member with Theaterwork Productions, pianist for the Santa Fe Men's Camerata, Santa Fe Women's Ensemble, Santa Fe Performing Arts Co., Santa Fe Suzuki School, Santa Fe Symphony Chorus, and various Santa Fe opera studios.

Since moving to the Columbia Gorge in fall 2006, she performed the Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 4 with the Columbia Gorge Sinfonietta, and is currently music director with her husband, Dustin, at Bethel Congregational Church in White Salmon.

She and her husband co-created the Camerata Columbia as a way of strengthening the local musical arts community.

Hunley, pianist, vocalist, music director, educator, composer and arranger, holds a bachelor's degree in jazz and commercial music piano performance from the Lamont School of Music at the University of Denver. He has performed for over 12 years as a professional musician with a variety of jazz, popular, funk, and commercial groups. He has performed in many top venues in Denver, Colo., at the Bellagio and Mandaly Bay resorts in Las Vegas, and on the Carnival Cruise Liner MS Ecstasy.

Hunley composed, arranged, produced and performed on the self titled album from Denver swing band David Arthur and the Round Table. He has performed with and conducted the Santa Fe Men's Camerata, and has also performed as Captain von Trapp to critical acclaim in the Theaterwork production of The Sound of Music.

For the last two years, he was the director of music at Columbia High School. He is now looking forward to teaching general music at Mid Valley Elementary in Odell. Prior to that, he taught in Santa Fe, N.M. His students have received many honors, and many have been selected as All-State Choir and Band participants. He has directed musicals like Les Miserables, and Beauty and the Beast to critical acclaim, and he has arranged and accompanied many choral and jazz pieces for his student groups. He is currently performing with the popular folk/rock group Tilly Jam.

Kingsley comes to White Salmon originally from the Mid West. He studied clarinet at the University of Idaho. He formed the Joshua Kingsley Quartet in Spokane and Northern Idaho in addition to various other musical endeavors.

Kingsley currently teaches music at Henkle Middle School and continues to further his studies and performance opportunities every summer at Northwestern University in Chicago.

Sankari grew up on the Washington side of the Columbia River Gorge and attended Stevenson High School, where he played drums in the school's jazz band. While earning his English degree at the University of Washington in Seattle, he played in various pop/rock-oriented bands, and also got to experience the early stages of the grunge music movement, seeing the band Nirvana as one of "four bands for four bucks" on the UW campus.

He earned a teaching certificate from Portland State University in 1997, and has been teaching English at Columbia High School in White Salmon since 2002.

Sankari continues to be active musically, playing drums in local bands including the Ed Swick Trio, Joanie's Jazz, various incarnations of Charlie Escher's jazz/fusion/etc.


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