Trauma survivor is up for award

Matthew Sanford of Orono, author of "Waking: A Memoir of Trauma and Transcendence," is one of 40 semifinalists from around the country in the sixth annual Volvo for Life Awards.

The awards are the culmination of a nationwide search each year for real-life heroes. The public can vote online until Jan. 7 to help select three finalists, who will receive up to $100,000 for their charities.

Sanford, who was paralyzed after a car crash when he was 13, is a yoga teacher who has written about his experiences in rebuilding mind-body connections. He has established a nonprofit, Mind Body Solutions, that helps people in developing their mind-body connection.

Sanford will be speaking about his work at 7 p.m. Thursday at Orono Middle School, 800 Old Crystal Bay Road, Long Lake.

For more on the Volvo for Life Awards, go to www.vol voforlifeawards.com. And for more on Sanford, visit www.mindbodysolutions.org.

Arts council holding auditions

The Maple Grove Arts Council is holding auditions for a jazz ensemble it's forming.

Under the direction of conductor and musician Paul Mazzacano, the ensemble will rehearse on Monday nights beginning in January and will perform at Maple Grove Arts Council events, special city events and on a monthly cable television show. Other concerts and a concert tour are planned.

Auditions will be held at 7 p.m. on three consecutive Mondays, Dec. 3-17, at the Osseo Junior High School band room, 10223 93rd Avenue N.. Tryouts will be held by section: on Dec. 3, rhythm section players; on Dec. 10, saxophones and woodwinds, and on Dec. 17, trumpets and trombones. Membership fee will be $45.

The ensemble needs five saxophones (two altos, two tenors and one baritone), five trumpets, five trombones (four tenor and one bass) and five rhythm section players (including keyboard, bass, drum set, guitar and other percussion instruments).

For more information, contact Mazzacano by e-mail at ptmano@msn.com or call 763-566-5150.

Winter concert at Wayzata High

The Plymouth Concert Band will present its winter concert at 4 p.m. Dec. 16 at Wayzata High School auditorium, 4955 Peony Lane N., Plymouth. The band features musicians from Plymouth and the surrounding suburbs.

The concert will feature a wide range of music, from "Russian Christmas Music" to an Appalachian folk carol, "Jesus, Jesus Rest Your Head."

For more information, go to www.plymouthconcert band.org.