PROWUS Student Stage

Nicole McCabe Trio (Portland State University)

Nicole McCabe is an alto saxophonist living in Portland, Oregon. She recently completed her undergraduate degree at Portland State University, studying there with George Colligan, Joe Manis, and John Nastos. As well as a leader, she has performed with Portland greats Alan Jones, Randy Porter, George Colligan, Charlie Porter, and Ron Steen. She has performed alongside musicians such as Carmen Lundy, Steve Wilson, Paquito D’Rivera, Terri Lyne Carrington, and Tia Fuller. Her influences range from Charlie Parker and Sonny Rollins to Gary Bartz and Joe Lovano and enjoys leading her band throughout venues in Portland such as Teutonic Wine, The 1905, Corkscrew Wine Bar, and the jazz station in Eugene.

Lineup: Nicole McCabe, alto sax; Ross Garlow, bass; Daniel Rossi, drums

Georgiev/Hathaway/Moreno (Portland State University) 

Heavily influenced by the great trio’s led by Ahmad Jamal, Herbie Hancock, and Ari Hoenig, Georgiev/Hathaway/Moreno will perform their original compositions, interpretations of classic standards, and much more. Band members perform frequently throughout Oregon, and have performed with musicians such as George Colligan, Ron Steen, and Mark Zaleski. Band members are all under the instruction of George Colligan and Alan Jones.

Lineup: Wesley Georgiev, piano; Liam Hathaway, bass; Andres Moreno, drums


Nika Ko and Devina Boughton began playing jazz together as teenagers. They have since both moved to Boston to study at Berklee College of Music. Revisiting their West Coast roots for the summer, they have joined forces with two locals—bassist Liam Hathaway and drummer Michael Rodenkirch—to form Transplants. Liam and Michael are both based in the Portland area, attending PSU and PCC respectively. Nika and Devina also perform around the Boston area with ska-jazz fusion band Tenfold Path.

Lineup: Nika Ko, piano; Devina Boughton, trumpet; Liam Hathaway, bass; Michael Rodenkirch, drums

dipthong (Clackamas Community College)

In a technological age where young people are growing up surrounded by negativity, Oregon City-based group “dipthong” spreads their message of peace and love through hip-hop- and funk-inspired jazz. Leader, Carson Krause (bass and vocals), urges his peers to resist depression, get enough sleep, and discover their inner kindness. Krause met keyboardist Kyle Christofanelli at Clackamas Community College, where they study jazz and music technology. Krause formed the band in April of 2019, calling upon long time friend and drummer Drew Debban, and talented co-vocalist Jade Swim, to help foster love in the people that need it.

Lineup: Carson Krause, bass/vocals/compositions; Kyle Christofanelli, keyboards; Drew Debban, drums; Jade Swim, vocals

Elk and Weird Dreams (Lower Columbia College)

Matt Olason is a musician from Cowlitz County WA. He initially shook up the local music scene at age 17 as a rock guitar player, playing, writing, and singing in the pop band Seacats. His next project was the short lived but memorable garage rock duo Party Mountain, based out of Olympia WA. All the while he became enamored with jazz, and eventually decided to return to Lower Columbia College to study jazz guitar. He will be completing his Bachelors in Performance at Portland State University beginning in Fall 2019.

Lineup: TBA

Jake Khawaja Trio (Alan Jones Academy of Music)

Jake Khawaja is a jazz pianist that attends Lakeridge high school and studies with several of Portland’s finest jazz musicians, including Randy Porter and Chuck Israels. He lists Bud Powell, Thelonious Monk, and Barry Harris as his central influences. He will he playing a set at the Montavilla Jazz Festival of original songs and arrangements of jazz standards.

Lineup: Jake Khawaja, piano; Nathan Dwornicki, bass; Michael Rodenkirch, drums

Thomas Tuerff Quartet (Metropolitan Youth Symphony)

Thomas Tuerff joined the American Music Program (AMP) led by Thara Memory as a high-school freshman. He was a part of this group until the beginning of his sophomore year which is also when he became the lead alto in the Lincoln High School Jazz Band. During his time with AMP, he was introduced to Gary Harris and started taking private lessons with him. Near the end of his sophomore year, he met Derek Sims and began playing in one of the combos he directed. With Sims, he had the opportunity to play gigs every once in a while at the 1905. Wanting to perform more, he started to look for groups he could join and ended up in the MYS Jazz Ensemble under the direction of Ryan Meagher.

Lineup: Thomas Tuerff, alto sax; Niko Karassik, guitar; Sophia Suhler, bass; Nolan Lewis, drums

TOTEM (Alan Jones Academy of Music) 

The Alan Jones Academy of Music (AJAM) presents TOTEM. A sextet of young jazz musicians who study at AJAM.

Lineup: Isaac Wooten, trumpet;  AJ Ruben, trumpet; Jake Khawaja, piano; Noah Weinberg, guitar; Christian Ramirez, bass; Michael Rodenkirch, drums

PYJO Vanguard Combo (Portland Youth Jazz Orchestra)

The Portland Youth Jazz Orchestra is Oregon’s largest Jazz Program! PYJO has trained musicians from the Portland Metro Area since 2001. Many alumni have attend prestigious music schools across the country on scholarship. Many have continued in music or music education.

Lineup: TBA

MHCC Jazz Combo (Mt. Hood Community College)

The Mt. Hood Community College Jazz program under the direction of Dan Davey features large and small jazz ensembles. MHCC students perform frequently around the greater Portland area at jazz venues and festivals.

Lineup: Anna Meyer, vocals; Nathan Richardson, alto sax; Joseph Ten Eyck, drums; Frankie Bryant, guitar; Max Mitchell, bass

Festival Schedule

PROWUS Student Stage

The PROWUS Student Stage in the Jazz Lounge showcases the best up and coming jazz students from various Portland area public and private jazz programs.

PROWUS (portland rock on with us) is a non-profit organization that provides grants for students age 8 – 18 in the greater Portland, Oregon metro area who are pursuing extra-curricular music education.

Festival Schedule