PULLMAN – Groups and individuals from WSU received top honors on “College Day” at the 2008 Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival held at the University of Idaho Feb. 21.

WSU VOJAZZ under the direction of Jennifer Parker received an Adjudicators’ Choice Award as did soloists Matt Lanka, baritone saxophone; David Miner, instrumental composition; Troy Robey, bass; and Tiffany Stephens, drums. The WSU Jazz Big Band under the direction of Greg Yasinitsky received an Adjudicators’ Special Commendation Award as did soloists Kayla Williams, alto voice; and Himes Alexander, bass voice. This total of eight awards is more than double the number of awards received by any other competing university of college.

VOJAZZ received a special award from a festival sponsor and Lanka, Robey and Stephens were selected to perform in “Hamp’s Club,” a new feature at the festival which provides students the opportunity to perform in a special, jazz club-like setting.

More than 120 college vocal and instrumental groups, combos and soloists from throughout the West and as far away as North Dakota and Massachusetts, performed on College Day at the 2008 Lionel Hampton International Jazz Festival.

WSU Coordinator of Jazz Studies, Yasinitsky said: “I am gratified that WSU was recognized for excellence across the musical spectrum, from ensembles to individuals, from instrumental soloists to vocal soloists and from performance to composition. I am extremely proud of our students and faculty.”