Find Out More

. To see what else is happening this spring, go to one of the websites below:

For More on RHS Jazz Bands click here or visit the Jazz Boosters Calendar Page. For RHS Orchestra click here. For RHS Roughriders Band information click the Riders Band site. And for Roosevelt Drama events click here.

Spring Happenings at Roosevelt

Roosevelt High School Coming Back to Life!

by Cathie Hogue Huffman, ’63

Hello Golden Grads! 
Lots of things are happening at RHS…so Just-So-You-Know …

Theater News:

A strange thing happened when casting for Mama Mia (Sold out: sorry I wasn’t aware of the play earlier!)  Being short of male actors for this musical they auditioned members of the football team(!) and find the Drama students and Football athletes are melding well (anyone remember the Rhythm and Riot Review in the 60s?)  There’s a good article in the Seattle Times.  Here’s the link:

Roosevelt High School Theatre Department 

https://www.seattletimes.com/…/at-seattles-roosevelt…/

The Spring Musical will be Spongebob the Musical  May 12, 13, 14, 20 & 21 at 7 pm and May 21 & 22 at 2:30 pm.

Jazz Band:

The Jazz Band is one of the top 15 groups competing in the Essentially Ellington Competition and Festival this year…in New York again! The dates are May 5-7, 2022.  Previous RHS performances are available on uTube. They are truly amazing and when I find where the finals can be heard/seen I’ll let you know.  

Orchestra:

 March 21, 7 p.m.: April Foolz Concert, Roosevelt Theater

 Concert, Chamber, & Symphony Orchestra, Roosevelt Theater

June 7, 6 p.m.: Final Concert, at the Roosevelt Theater Concert, Chamber, & Symphony Orchestras

Reminders:

1. I’s time to send in dues for 2022,  if you have not already. The “Grapevine” newsletter is only sent to those with current dues.

2.  Class news is due March 18th – send to:  janet@whalley.net  (because this coming school year is Roosevelt’s 100th – you might want to write a memory from your time at Roosevelt.

3.   There will be no luncheon this coming June!  But activities are being planned for September ’22 through June of ’23 to celebrate the Centennial!

I hope this finds everyone returning to some type of normal!  It’s so good to see the students are able to participate and compete again!

It’s Easy to Join or Renew Membership

You can do it online!

As the students and staff are preparing for a great year ahead, we too are planning some exciting opportunities for our alumni and fellow Golden Grads.

  • The RHS Centennial Celebration is coming! Roosevelt turns 100 next year (2022-2023 school year), with special opportunities for current Golden Grad members during this monumental year. Active membership will guarantee notices and invitations to Centennial events.
  • Your Grapevine Newsletter will continue to arrive in your in-box or your mailbox. Don’t miss a single edition!
  • Have an opportunity to meet the new RHS Principal, Mr. Hollins.

The rates for membership through December 31, 2022 are as follows: $20 individual annual member or $30 couple living in the same household annual members; $250 individual lifetime member or $350 couple living in the same household lifetime members. 

Start or renew your membership today!

Complete this short form (linked here) then watch your email for a confirmation and a link to pay your dues with a credit or debit card through our secure online server. 

If you have any questions, call Amy at 206.226.5679.

Thank you!
Board of Directors
RHS Golden Grads, Seattle, WA

Roosevelt High School: Beyond Black and White

RARE Documentary Film Premiere

From Steve Fisher, Class of ’71

A big event is approaching in the life of RARE: the premiere showing of its documentary film, Roosevelt High School: Beyond Black and White.  The premier showing of the film will occur online, via Zoom, on January 31 at 7 pm PST.  The film premier will be followed by a discussion led by Principal Q Hollins and others involved in the making of the film, with questions accepted from those attending. 

Click on the image below or visit Beyond Black and White to register for the zoom link.

Thank you.  If you know of any individuals or organizations you think would be interested in the film and in this event please share this. 

Happening in Spring of 2022

With the closure of RHS due to the Coronavirus Pandemic starting Spring 2020, all the school’s programs were cancelled. When school reopened, activities started up gradually with adjustments to protect students and audiences from the virus. The hoped-for 2022 Golden Grads Luncheon is cancelled due to the Covid surge. So we’re taking it one step at a time. To see what is happening this spring, go to one of the websites below:

For More on RHS Jazz Bands click here or visit the Jazz Boosters Calendar Page. For RHS Orchestra click here. For RHS Roughriders Band information click the Riders Band site. And for Roosevelt Drama events click here.

2022 Golden Grads Luncheon Cancelled Due to Covid

To protect all of us and our families, it’s necessary to again postpone the Annual Golden Grads Luncheon this year.

We were eagerly looking forward to finally being able to hold the much-anticipated event.  But it was not to be. The Golden Grads Board of Directors just voted to cancel it due to the current surge in Covid-19 cases, and the highly transmissible nature of the new Omicron variant.

So, fingers crossed, we are now planning for the 2023 Golden Grads Luncheon.

President’s Report for Fall 2021

by GG President Doug Whalley (’63)

New Principal

In the last Grapevine I wrote how lucky we were to have Kristina Anderson Rodgers as the Principal of Roosevelt. Two weeks later she announced that she had accepted an offer to be the principal at Bainbridge Island High School (unrelated, I hope, to the fact that I spelled her name wrong). Fortunately, I am pleased to tell you that her replacement appears to be equally outstanding. His biography is printed elsewhere in this Grapevine, but I will give you my personal impressions of meeting HkwauaQueJol Hollins (call him “Que”). He is experienced, personable, enthusiastic about being at Roosevelt, and quick to laugh. He was excited to hear about RHS Golden Grads and what we do, and he was looking forward to attending our luncheon and visiting with the Board of Directors when we once again meet at the school. He was talking and laughing with Ben Snowden when I arrived – a good sign. I believe Roosevelt is in good hands.

Your (Seemingly Permanent) Board of Directors

Because we have had to cancel our luncheon and Board meetings at the school, we have not had an annual meeting or election for two years. In August,the officers and some of the committee members met in person for the first time since the pandemic started. We approved the budget printed in this issue, and the elected officers did not object to serving another term. (Of course, I didn’t actually ask them). We hope to have a live, in-person Board of Directors meeting at the school in the Spring, and a luncheon in June 2022. Luncheon Chair, Cindy Dack, is ready to come out of her two-year retirement. I greatly appreciate the work of our officers, committee chairs, and members and class representatives.

Roosevelt’s 100th Anniversary

Roosevelt High School opened in 1922, despite complaints that it was too expensive and too remote. An anniversary celebration is planned for Spring 2023 if the pandemic permits it. Golden Grads will play a part.

Welcome New and Returning Members

In the last Grapevine, I mentioned that we had hired Amy Hall as a part-time administrative assistant to work on recruitment and communication with members. It worked. Recently, Amy created an email allowing for online membership renewal by credit card – a campaign that has resulted in over 35 new or renewed members in the first three weeks. Soon we will also be able to accept credit cards for dues and donations online, so keep an eye on our website and our Facebook page for upcoming announcements.

Roosevelt – Training Ground for the Olympics

In this issue, we write about three Olympic athletes from Roosevelt. I am certain there are more, so please write our editor or me with information about them. We are also interested in Special Olympians, and Olympic coaches and trainers from Roosevelt.

My Family at Roosevelt

I am taking advantage of my bully pulpit to brag about my family’s connection to Roosevelt. This Fall, my granddaughter and my grandnephew will both be freshmen at Roosevelt, part of the class of 2025. They are the 4th generation of our family to attend – now a total of 12 family members so far, beginning with my mother in the Class of 1931 when Cecil Bullock was a teacher. I warned Principal Hollins that in addition to the two new freshmen, four more Whalleys are on their way, with the youngest, Sage Whalley, Roosevelt High School Class of 2039, already dressed in Roosevelt colors.

It’s Easy to Join or Renew Membership

You can do it all online!

As the students and staff are preparing for a great year ahead, we too are planning some exciting opportunities for our alumni and fellow Golden Grads.

Thank you for your dedication as a member of Golden Grads. We now have a new option to join or renew membership online – see below for the details!

As you know, our membership year follows the calendar year – January through December. This year, we are offering an early start or renewal (for the same price) and your membership will be valid through December 2022. So you will be an active member for nearly 16 months for the price of 12 ($20)! The early savings applies to our membership for couples too.

Why renew your Golden Grads Membership?

  • The RHS Centennial Celebration is coming! Roosevelt turns 100 next year (2022-2023 school year). We will be hosting special opportunities for current Golden Grad members during the monumental year. Active membership will guarantee notices and invitations to Centennial events.
  • Your Grapevine Newsletter will continue to arrive in your in-box or your mailbox. Don’t miss a single edition!
  • Join us in the Spring of 2022 for the return of our Golden Grads luncheon! At this time, we are hopeful we will have an in-person event in Seattle. Active members will be invited to this fun gathering and will have an opportunity to meet the new RHS Principal, Mr. Hollins.
  • And it’s easier than ever to renew!

The rates for membership through December 31, 2022 are as follows:

  • $20 individual annual member
  • $30 couple living in the same household annual members
  • $250 individual life-time member
  • $350 couple living in the same household lifetime members

Start or renew your membership today! Complete this short form (linked here) then watch your email for a confirmation and a link to pay your dues with a credit or debit card through our secure online server.

If you have any questions, call Amy at 206.226.5679.

Thank you!

The Board of Directors
RHS Golden Grads Seattle, WA

Streaming Now!

RHS Spring Musical “As You Like It” Streaming Online

This Spring, Roosevelt Theatre is thrilled to bring you a musical experience unlike any other: a show that is part movie musical filmed around Greenlake and Roosevelt AND part live, real-time performance, streaming to your home! As You Like It is a modern musical update of Shakespeare’s classic comedy, full of soulful tunes and mistaken-identity hijinks! Performances are June 3, 4, 11, and 12. Tickets went on sale May 1 at rhstheatre.net.

After purchase, you’ll be emailed a receipt with a link to click the night of the show. Once you’ve clicked the link, using any device, sit back and enjoy.

We are already offered a free, invite-only preview for the Golden Grads, and tickets are now on sale for the remainder of the performances.

If you would like to help keep Theatre alive at Roosevelt, Patron of the Arts is Roosevelt High School Theatre’s annual fundraising campaign associated with the musical.

Our theatre productions are completely self-supporting because we don’t get any money from our school or district.

Student fundraising and ticket sales help underwrite the theatre and dance curriculum each year and gives students the chance to work with local and national guest theatre professionals. Funds also cover costumes, tech equipment, licensing fees, and more. Every dollar makes a difference in the type of shows we are able to perform.

Our goal is to raise $20,000 in patron donations from friends, family, alumni, and theatre lovers in our community.

To date, the students have raised $9,560 and could use a boost to get them across the finish line. Please consider helping us reach our goal by giving to our non-profit booster group, The Associated Friends of Roosevelt Drama (Tax ID 27-0604574)—employer matches welcome. Donate here: https://givebutter.com/POTA2021

Music, Music, Music!

Roosevelt High School Jazz Band Members Win Awards at 2021 Essentially Ellington Jazz Festival

By Paul de Barros Special to The Seattle Times

Members of the Roosevelt High School Jazz Band earned seven awards Saturday for solo and section work at the prestigious 26th annual Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Band Festival. Thanks to the pandemic, bands were participating virtually. The event was produced in New York by Jazz at Lincoln Center, and went from Wednesday through Saturday.

“It’s just wild how it’s all come together,” said Roosevelt band director Scott Brown after the awards ceremony. “To get everything popping the way they did was just a miracle.” Roosevelt band members who received outstanding soloist awards were Nathan Mesler (vibraphone), Eli Sullivan (alto saxophone) and Nick Mesler (trombone). Honorable mentions for solo work went to Owen Gwinn (tenor saxophone) and Javier Gonzalez (trumpet). Outstanding section awards went to the Roosevelt trombones and trumpets.

Essentially Ellington celebrates the music of Duke Ellington and other classic jazz composers and has been open to bands west of the Mississippi since 1999. Since then, Roosevelt has made the finals 21 out of 23 years and has won the competition four times.

In 2021, bands were critiqued but not ranked, so there was no winner. The audio tracks of Roosevelt playing two pieces by Ellington — the swinger “Old King Dooji” and “Pyramid,” a Latin-tinged tune co-written by trombonist Juan Tizol — were streamed live Saturday, as still photographs of the band appeared on screen. Their performance of “Old King Dooji” was the audition recording the band pieced together digitally earlier this year, when the pandemic prohibited students from playing together in the same room. “Pyramid” was recorded live.

You can hear the Roosevelt Jazz Band play at the 2021 Essentially Ellington festival below or by going here, starting at the 33-minute mark.

Paul de Barros: pdebarros@comcast.net. This report is supported, in part, by the Rubin Institute for Music Criticism, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and the Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation.