2022 Virtual Jazz, Rags, and Blues Festival Results

16 January 2022: Application Deadline – must include YouTube Performance link
5 February 2022: Zoom Performances and Workshop
2022 Jazz, Rags, and Blues Information sheet
2022 Jazz, Rags, and Blues Application form

The 2022 Jazz, Rags, and Blues Festival organizers are EMTA members Marie Wollam-Mergler and Brandi Bassett.


The festival will consist of two zoom sessions: A masterclass and a workshop. Each session will be ½ hour to 1 hour long.


Masterclass: Each student will record a video of their performance of up to two jazz pieces and submit a single link to their recording with their registration. The masterclass will take place during a zoom session. During the masterclass, the visiting artist will teach principles of jazz piano playing and call on some of the students to work on their pieces. In addition, each student will receive a brief written evaluation and an achievement certificate. The adjudicator may recognize exceptional student performances by placing a gold seal on their certificate; these seals will be visible only to the students and teachers, and will be mailed to the students after the festival. At the conclusion of the festival, the adjudicator will select performances to include in the EMTA Student Awards Gala in June. These results will be posted on the website after teachers and students are made aware of them via email.


Workshop: The workshop will consist of group activities and exercises on the keyboard – exploring various style techniques such as the 12-bar blues and improvisational techniques.

Students should be at their pianos with their audio on mute except when called upon by the visiting artists for both the Zoom Masterclass and the Workshop.

Requirements for Participation:

  1. Pieces must be works representing the Jazz, Rags or Blues styles. These include but are not limited to pieces from method book series (i.e. Martha Mier, Nancy and Randall Faber, etc.) and original transcriptions (i.e. Chick Corea, Art Tatum). Improvisations based on lead sheets are not allowed.
  2. Memorization is encouraged but not required. Only memorized pieces will be eligible for gold seals.
  3. Performance and workshop times will be held between 9AM and 6PM.  Time requests and changes may be considered but cannot be guaranteed. Students will be scheduled in groups according to age or level for a maximum of 2 hour duration (up to 1 hour masterclass, 1 hour workshop).   A zoom link will be sent to students via email prior to Feb. 6.
  4. Students must be at the piano and on camera for both the Zoom workshop and adjudications. Please be muted unless the guest artist asks you to unmute.

Festival/Workshop Fee: $35 per student

  1. Registration will be completed on the EMTA website (edmondsmusicteachers.org) and needs to include:
    * payment
    * a link to the student video
    * pdf of music to be played
  2. Videos should be uploaded to youtube using the “unlisted” option
  3. A PDF copy of the student’s music must be uploaded to the registration form. Copyright laws allow one PDF copy to be submitted; the adjudicator will delete the copy after the festival.
  4. Be sure to list the name of the payee on the registration form so payment can be matched to the student.
  5. Deadline for registration and video submission is January 16, 2022
  6. Each student under 18 years old needs to have parent and/or guardian approval to participate in this online festival.

Visiting Artist Bios

Masterclass Visiting Artist: Dan Taylor 

Dan Taylor is in his 9th year of teaching band, and his 8th year in the Snoqualmie Valley School District. In the fall of 2019 he helped to reopen Snoqualmie Middle School as their band director. At SMS Dan currently teaches three grade level concert bands, an auditioned jazz band and a music and technology class. Dan received his Bachelors and Masters degrees from Central Washington University where he studied as a classical pianist with Dr. John Pickett, and was also a member of the nationally recognized CWU Wind Ensemble under the direction of Larry Gookin and the award winning Jazz Band I under the direction of Chris Bruya. As a performer, Dan has appeared with many outstanding players at both the local and national level, including Ingrid Jense, Terell Stafford, Jay Thomas, Greg Williamson, Steve Treseler, Jake Bergevin, Jeff Brooks, Lenny Price, and many other outstanding local musicians. Dan has also performed at international jazz conferences and events such as the International Association for Jazz Education in California, Jazz Education Network in Louisville, the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland, the North Sea Jazz Festival in the Netherlands and tours in Branson, Missouri; the Bahamas, and Thailand. In growing demand as a clinician and guest artist, Dan often works with music students from all over the state in multiple styles and genres. Dan’s students have gone on to perform at the Essentially Ellington Jazz Festival in New York and the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago. He has also appeared as a guest artist and clinician in the Edmonds, Bellevue, Auburn, and Federal Way School Districts. Dan currently lives in Snoqualmie with his wife and two amazing sons. He feels proud and honored to be able to serve the Snoqualmie Valley and the Washington state music community through music education and performance.

Zoom Workshop Visiting Artist: Ev Stern

Ev Stern is a musician and teacher originally from Ann Arbor, Michigan. He took a BA in English from Oberlin College in 1985, and after teaching Humanities for three years at Maumee Valley Country Day School in Toledo, Ohio, he moved to Seattle in 1989 to pursue a career in music. He formed Ev Stern’s Jazz Workshop in 1994 to serve the development of jazz musicians of all ages, levels, and instruments and has worked with over 500 musicians.
For this year’s Jazz, Rags, and Blues Workshop, Ev is going to present a lesson in how to create your own Blues song using the elements of the Classic 12-Bar Form. We will review or learn the basic chords and a classic bass line, as well as the poetic elements of rhythm and rhyme that go into the story telling that makes the Blues a universal form of expression.