What To expect

Our Team


Since its inception in 1977, the DeMiero Jazz Festival has taken on several names while always staying true to its mission and vision. The festival was initially known as the Soundsation Jazz Festival and it was produced by student leaders in Soundsation and founder/director Frank DeMiero. It later became known as the Lynnwood Jazz Festival when the city of Lynnwood became the primary naming sponsor. Later, the festival was dubbed the Edmonds Community College Jazz Festival. In 2005, The Friends of Frank DeMiero began co-hosting the festival and for the past several years the festival has simply been named the DeMiero Jazz Fest. To avoid confusion, in 2014 the organization became officially known as the “DeMiero Jazz Festival” and our annual event remains titled the “DeMiero Jazz Fest”.

In the mid 70’s Frank and two other Jazz Choir directors met and shared what they would like to see in a Jazz Choir Festival. At the time all major jazz festivals were competitive. There were strict rules at these festivals: a limited and specific number of singers, the number of rhythm section members, the length of performance time and more.  And, of course, there was only one first place winner, with everyone else going home in the losers bracket.


Tim Hauser Vocal Jazz Scholarship – This Scholarship honors the late Tim Hauser, founder and vocalist of The Manhattan Transfer. This scholarship allows a group to participate, perform, and interact with other students and learn from the very best in jazz. Being a part of the festival and getting to experience time with great musicians (and students just like them) will help stimulate growth and help their program get a solid footing in their own community.
The 2020 recipient was Edmonds Woodway Highschool, under the direction of Charlotte Reese!

Dee Daniels Jazz Vocal Scholarship – This scholarship was established by Dee Daniels and Doug Fleming in 2016 to provide young aspiring jazz vocalists with the opportunity to be mentored by renowned professional jazz artists, and to hone the craft of jazz singing, performance, and music industry business. The scholarship will offer each recipient the opportunity to be inspired, and to inspire others while attending the DeMiero Jazz Fest each year in Edmonds, Washington. For more information, click here.

The 2020 recipient was Brooke Lambert!

What To expect

Students and directors participate in our festival to learn. It doesn’t matter if you are a novice or an experienced performing group. As long as you give your all and do you best, you are a winner at the DeMiero Jazz Fest. There are workshops and clinics throughout the festival in scatting, soloing, instrumental development, stage protocol, ensemble singing and more.

Our guest artists are selected utilizing four criteria:

1. Outstanding Performance – a world class artist
2. Outstanding Entertainer – an artist who can perform with technique in an inspirational manner
3. Outstanding Communicator – the ability to share knowledge and wisdom with students at all levels and with all years of experience
4. An Outstanding Person – a nice person who works well and gets along with everyone (this is too much work not to have fun!)

Our Team




Composer and jazz pianist David Frishberg calls Frank DeMiero “the Vince Lombardi of Vocal Jazz.” That’s a pretty accurate description and one that Frank himself likes a great deal, too. So, it is with great respect that this festival honors an educator who for nearly 50 years has touched the lives of tens of thousands of people with the gift of music.

But, a bit of background is order. Frank’s career started with his playing accordion. Thank God it blossomed from there!

Noted music educator, clinician, adjudicator, guest conductor, composer/arranger and publisher, Frank played drums in Olympic College Jazz Band and studied voice/conducting with Ralph Manzo. He has a BA degree in Education from Eastern Washington University and Masters in Conducting from Central Washington University.

DeMiero began his teaching career as director of choral music at Weatherwax High School in Aberdeen, Washington. He then taught at Mountlake Terrace High School in Mountlake Terrace, Washington for seven years. DeMiero founded the music program at Edmonds Community College where he founded and directed the Soundsation jazz choirs and was Music Department Chairman for 11 years. He was Director of Vocal Jazz Studies at the University of Washington for two years. In 1998 DeMiero retired as the Supervisor of Music for Edmonds School District, where he had served for 13 years. Currently, DeMiero conducts and manages the Seattle Jazz Singers. He is also the conductor of the 100+ voice Sno-King Community Chorale and its 20-person audition-only Ensemble.

DeMiero is the co-founder of Sound Music Publications, a publishing company that offers the best in all areas of vocal jazz literature, recordings, choral clinics/workshops and materials.



Graced with an “impeccable” voice (Winnipeg Free Press) and hailed as an artist that “may well turn out to be the next important jazz singer” by the LA Times, Sara Gazarek has been one of the leading lights of an impressive generation of jazz vocalists since her brilliant emergence at age 20. While her subsequent career has been the picture of success – highlighted by five acclaimed albums, an ardent fanbase, enthusiastic reviews, a teaching position at the University of Southern California, and collaborations with such luminaries as Kurt Elling, Fred Hersch, Billy Childs, and Larry Goldings, it is with her latest double GRAMMY® nominated album, Thirsty Ghost, that Gazarek finally brings her musical expression stunningly into phase with her emotional maturity. Prompted by an intense period of personal and professional upheaval, the “exquisite taste, bright wit and creative vitality” hailed by WNPR remain, but those qualities are potently shaded by a rich undercurrent of complex feeling and whole-hearted realities. Sara lives in Los Angeles, CA and teaches in the Jazz Program at the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California, teaching privately, and directing the award-winning vocal jazz ensemble.

Thank you to our management team & board of directors

Management Team

Sara Gazarek

Artistic Director

Frank DeMiero

Creative Consultant

Rob Hyatt

Chief Administrative Officer

Joey Mircea

Festival Producer

Board of Directors

Louise Uriu – President/Volunteer Coordinator
Travis Foxx – Treasurer
Regina Carretta – Secretary
Sara Gazarek – Artistic Director
Rob Hyatt – Festival Director
Joey Mircea – Member/Festival Producer
Kirk Marcy – Soundsation Director/Daytime Festival Director
Frank DeMiero – Founder/Creative Consultant
Barb Hauser New – Member/Social Media Director
Paulette Johnson – Member/FanJazzTic Coordinator
Catherine Montrose – Member/Grants Coordinator
Tom Hawksford – Member
Barbara Hawksford – Member
Nancy Fisher – Member
Patty Schmidt – Member
Katy Trapp – Member
Geoff Lloyd – Member
Lynn Melby – Member