Mike Janzen

Born in the heartland of Manitoba, Mike Janzen grew up with music. Classical music, hymnody and gospel singing were his first influences. Early formative explorations took in rock and funk, and along with advanced training in both piano and composition (Mike holds a Master of Composition from the University of Toronto) came forays into the wilds of jazz and modern contemporary classical.

Over the last 16 years, Mike has focused on composing, improvising and playing jazz. He has studied with Hilario Duran, Jim McNeely, Chan Ka Nin, Christos Hatzis, David Braid, Dave Restivo, Mark Eisemann, Paul Read and Wayne Bowman.

He has worked and recorded with Phil Dwyer, Kevin Breit, George Koller, Hugh Marsh, Daniel Lanois, Steve Bell, Ben Riley, Davide DiRenzo, Larnell Lewis, Mark Rogers, Andrew Downing, Frank Botos, Anthony Michelli, Pat Collins, Lori Anna Reid, Julie Michels, Jenni Burke and Jacob Moon.

Mike has toured internationally and across North America and last year completed a cross Canada symphony tour with Steve Bell. His orchestrations have been called, "imaginative (Holly Harris, Winnipeg Free Press), "full of virtuosic craftsmanship (Vincent Ho, Composer in Residence WSO), and "some of the finest and most creative (arrangements) our orchestra has played in years (Gwen Hoebig / Concert Master / WSO). Mike Janzen will make his Massey Hall debut on Dec.3/11 when he performs with Steve Bell and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra.

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