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HIGH LIFE: A WEEKLY FORUM FOR HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS : WHAT'S HAPPENING : Los Alamitos Band Wins Top Spot at Jazz Fest

April 22, 1993

The Los Alamitos High School Jazz Band won top honors at the 31st Reno International Jazz Festival last weekend. The two-day event--sponsored by the University of Nevada, Reno--drew bands from more than 100 schools and colleges in the country.

The Los Alamitos band, under the direction of Chuck Wackerman, won first place in the AAAA Division and the Perpetual Trophy Sweepstakes Award, the highest award given at the competition. The Outstanding Jazz Soloist award went to drummer Brooks Wackerman. The Los Alamitos Jazz Combo won first place in the combo competition, with pianist Linda Martinez named outstanding rhythm section player.

A dozen Orange County high school students have won Merit Scholarships. The prestigious awards provide up to four years of college undergraduate study and an average of $1,700 per year for expenses. The 12 students were among 1.1 million nationwide who competed for the corporate-sponsored scholarships.

Orange County winners are: Connie Kim and Heidi Devries of Canyon High School in Anaheim, Aneesh Sha of Brea-Olinda High School in Brea, Kelli Guzman of Fountain Valley High School, Surya Ganguli of University High School in Irvine, Laura Greco of Santa Margarita High School in Rancho Santa Margarita and Thomas Westin of Irvine High School.

Also, David Huang of Laguna Hills High School, Brooke Lyons of St. Margaret's Episcopal School in San Juan Capistrano, Joseph Horvath of Mission Viejo High School, Eric Passchier of Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana and Rachel Schilling of Rosary High School in Fullerton.

All 6,500 winners nationwide scored in the top half of 1% on the Merit Program test, the PSAT/NMSQT, and were chosen on their abilities, accomplishments and potential for success in rigorous college studies, according to the Merit Scholarship Corp.

The Milli Vanilli lip-syncing fiasco generated a heap of shame for the devious singers. But it also spawned an idea at Kennedy High School in La Palma.

This Saturday the third annual Milli Vanilli Lip-Sync Contest pits 13 five-student teams at the school against one another for cash prizes totaling $350.

Teams will lip-sync to a range of tunes--"everything from Anthrax to Janet Jackson," said student body president Jaime Ruiz, who organized a used-Levi's sale on campus for part of the prize money.

"I've known what it is to be hungry, but I always went right to a restaurant."

--Ring Lardner

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