All-State High School and Junior All-State Jazz Ensemble

May 20-22, 2021
as part of the Indiana Education Music Association 2021 State Conference Performances
Butler University - Indianapolis, Indiana / The Palledium - Carmel, Indiana

Bob Lark - All-State High School Jazz Ensemble

Bob Lark is recognized regionally, nationally and internationally as a contemporary jazz educator and performer of integrity. His approach to pedagogy and rehearsal techniques has been noted by participation in professional conferences; publication of articles; compact disc recordings as both a performer and ensemble director; and the direction of numerous student honors ensembles. Down Beat magazine recognized Bob's work in 2010 with their Jazz Education Achievement Award.

In 2013, DePaul University honored Bob Lark as an ambassador for the DePaul Distinctions campaign. He serves as a Professor of Jazz Studies at DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois, where he directs the university Jazz Ensemble, teaches jazz trumpet and courses in jazz pedagogy, jazz style, and jazz history. Under his direction The DePaul University Jazz Ensemble has produced several Outstanding Performance Awards from the Jazz Educators Journal, Down Beat and Jazz Timesmagazines, and has recorded albums with legendary jazz artists Phil Woods, Clark Terry, Louie Bellson, Bob Brookmeyer, Jim McNeely, Jeff Hamilton, Slide Hampton, Randy Brecker, Tom Harrell, Ira Sullivan, Mark Colby, Bobby Shew, Frank Wess, Ron Perrillo, and Chicago Symphony Orchestra members Charles Vernon and John Bruce Yeh.

Bob is an active clinician, soloist and guest conductor. He has served as host for the Carmine Caruso International Jazz Trumpet Solo Competition, is the past-president of the Illinois Unit of the International Association for Jazz Education, and has chaired the International Trumpet Guild jazz improvisation competition. Throughout the 1990's, Bob directed the Midwest GRAMMY High School Jazz Band. Prior to his appointment to DePaul University, Bob was an Assistant Professor of Music at Emporia State University, Kansas. He holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in performance from the University of North Texas, having earlier earned a Master's degree from that school, and a Bachelor of Music Education degree from The Ohio State University.

As a performer, Bob is a trumpet and flugelhorn player whose performances are especially notable for his lyrical style and warm tone. His harmonically oriented improvisations shift between aggressive and cool playing. In speaking of Lark, jazz icon Clark Terry says, "He's a very good trumpet player, a very good musician. He's paid his dues."

Recently released on the Jazzed Media label is the critically acclaimed compact disc recording Sweet Return (Jazzed Media JM1068), by Bob Lark and his Alumni Big Band. This follows the success of a series of recordings on the Jazzed Media label, including those by The Bob Lark/Phil Woods Quintet, and Bob Lark and Friends, with Phil Woods, Rufus Reid, Jim McNeely and Mark Colby. Bob’s playing and writing are also featured on the CD recordings Until You and First Steps on the Hallway label. He is an exclusive Yamaha Performing Artist.

Mark Eifler – Junior All-State Jazz Ensemble

Mark is currently the director of Jazz Sudies at Castle High School and has taught bands, orchestras, jazz ensembles, and marching bands for over thirty nine years in public schools. He is the director of three jazz ensembles at Castle including the Jazz Bones, the Tuesday Jazz Ensemble and the award winning 12 O Clock Jazz Ensemble. The jazz ensembles have participated in numerous jazz festivals where they have been frequently named the top bands the last seven years. Since the inception of State Jazz Finals in Indiana, the Castle 12 O Clock Jazz Ensemble is the only band in the state to qualify each year. In 2017, the Castle 12 O Clock Jazz Ensemble was named Top Sate Honor Jazz Ensemble. His jazz ensembles have been a regular host for S.E. Shires Music Company clinics in the area performing with such artists as Vince DiMartino, Ben Griffin, Mark Buselli and Michael Davis.

Being a regular in State Finals in both Marching and Concert Organizational, this year the Castle Marching Knights were awarded runner up in State Finals Class A in 2018 and were named National Champions in Class 3A at BOA Grand Nationals.

As Principal Trombonist of the Evansville Symphonic Band, Mark has served as a soloist for over twelve years. Mark is the featured trombone soloist and band leader in the recent Crossroads Big Band recording titled Christmastime with the Crossroads Big Band. He has served as the instrumental music director of the Crossroads Christian Church where he directed the orchestra, combo ensembles and the Crossroads Big Band. Most recently, Mark has been the instrumental director of the Foundry where he directs the instrumental ensembles including the popular Foundry Big Band. Additionally, Mark has performed with Wayne Newton, The Four Tops, Marie Osmond, The Temptations, The Smothers Brothers, the Rat Pack, Chicago the Musical and The Impressions to name a few. He can be found on recordings of funk group Factor Primo and with jazz trumpet artist Jeff Reynolds.

As a clinician/artist for S.E. Shires Custom Brass Instruments, he performs on the Michael Davis model custom trombone.

Mark is a graduate of Castle High School and Indiana State University and has studied trombone with H. Joseph Owens, Dr. Lewis Van Haney, and Dr. Larry Weed. Mark has studied jazz with John LaBarbera and Mike Tracy, both of University of Louisville and Dr. John Spicknall of Indiana State University.

Mark also performs on conch shells. On a vacation with his family years ago to the Yucatan, he discovered a love of the conch shell as an instrument. Having travelled to that area many times, he has accumulated quite an assortment of pitched authentic shells that he performs with.

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2021 All State and Junior All-State Bands

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