Alto saxophonist Kenton Dick has a lot going for him these days.
The Wellington Secondary School student has been earning award after award as a member of the Dick-Olynyk Trio, a jazz group that includes his older sister, Tiana and drummer Ethan Olynyk.
Among the awards that Dick has won this year include the Lou Willamson Scholarship for Outstanding Woodwind Player Award, a $2500 scholarship to Humber College in Toronto and a Greater Nanaimo Chamber of Commerce Business Achievement Award.
“It is great to get the recognition and it is inspiring,” Dick said.
This summer Dick, along with Olynyk, will be heading to Boston where they will spend five weeks at the prestigious Berklee College of Music.
Both Dick and Olynyk received full scholarships to attend the five week summer program.
“I think I will be making a lot connections at Berklee,” Dick said.
Under the direction of Wellington Secondary School band director Carmella Luvisotto, the trio has attracted all kinds of attention.
Earlier this year, they were the only Canadian band to attend the Next Generation Jazz Festival in Monterey, Calif., where Olynyk earned the Outstanding Soloist for Drums Award in the high school division.
Dick, who is in his junior year of high school, explained that going to festivals is not only a way for them to travel but it also provides the trio with a great opportunity to network.
“Whenever we go to these festivals we always come back and end up friending a bunch of people on Facebook because you meet all these new people and they are interested in the same thing,” Dick said.
Following high school graduation next year, Dick plans to pursue a career in music.
He says he would like to attend Berklee full-time, but is keeping his options open.
“I want to apply to a whole bunch of places,” Dick said. “I’ll probably apply to Humber and then I’ll apply to schools in New York.”
With his sister set to graduate this year, Dick is hopeful that the trio can still remain together.
“I really hope that we will stay together,” Dick said. “I haven’t met a single drummer that is better than Ethan that is our age or in college. I want the group to stay connected for as long as we can.”
On Saturday (June 13), Dick-Olynyk Trio will be performing at the Acme Food Co., with Liam MacKay, beginning at 7 p.m. Admission to the event is by suggested donation of $5.Please call 250-753-0042.
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