Big Band

What's so good about Alex Samaras?

Artist: 

Okay so before I get too far along with this post I have to declare a fairly strong bias. Alex Samaras is one of my favourite singers. He's performed with my big band on numerous occasions. I've seen him perform in a variety of settings. And I've booked him for the Festival. As far as I'm concerned, from a fundamental quality of instrument standpoint, from a musical interpretation standpoint, from an emotional connection to the music standpoint...he's simply one of the best. All of which, in short, answers the title of this post.

Mike Herriott & the Off The Road Big Band

Mike Herriott & the OTR Band have already been dubbed "the best big band I've heard in a long time", "reminiscent of the powerhouse bands of Bill Chase and Maynard!", and "a band for the 21st century!" by fans and critics. Consisting of 16 of Toronto's finest brass and rhythm musicians, the band was formed in 2014 to perform the music of its founder, Canadian trumpet-star Mike Herriott.

Joe Sullivan Big Band

Since it’s début performance in 1998, the Joe Sullivan Big Band has become a major presence on the Canadian jazz scene. The group’s growing list of accomplishments includes numerous concert appearances, radio broadcasts and three critically acclaimed CD recordings. The group has received numerous grants from the Canadian and Québec arts councils and was twice nominated for a Prix Opus. The ensemble is anchored by one of Canada’s finest rhythm sections in André White (piano) Alec Walkington (bass) and Dave Laing (drums).

Bundesjazzorchester

In celebration of the 100th anniversary of the BAUHAUS, an influential art and
architecture movement, the German National Youth Jazz Orchestra, BuJazzO, presents a
live-music to picture program with original compositions by prominent German and
American jazz composers. Five short films from the 1920s by internationally renowned
Bauhaus master teacher, graphic artist, and photographer László Moholy-Nagy were
newly scored for big band and vocal ensemble. Three animated advertising shorts
(1919-1922) will open the program.

Beats & Pieces Big Band

Led by composer and conductor Ben Cottrell, Beats & Pieces Big Band see themselves as a band that happens to be big, rather than your average ‘big band’. They’re an extremely tightknit bunch, meeting as students in Manchester and growing up and developing musically individually and collectively within the city’s exciting scene. First playing together as Beats & Pieces in 2008, today these fourteen musicians know each other inside out socially and musically, and this familiarity is part of what sets them aside from a lot of other big bands today.

Igor Butman & The Moscow Jazz Orchestra

Igor Butman - Bandleader, soprano, alto, tenor sax
Azat Bayazitov- Tenor sax, soprano sax
Oleg Akkuratov - Piano
Ilya Morozov - Lead alto sax, flute
Aleksandr Dovgopolyi - Baritone sax, flute
Oleg Borodin - Lead trombone
Pavel Ovchinnikov - Trombone
Denis Popov - Trumpet
Hayk Grigoryan- Trumpet, flugelhorn
Pavel Zhulin - Lead trumpet
Sergei Dolzhenkov - Trombone
Nikolay Shevnin - Bass trombone
Victor Herauker - Alto sax, flute
Eduard Zizak - Drums
Sergei Korchagin - Bass

John LaBarbera Big Band

John La Barbera is a Grammy® nominated composer/arranger whose writing spans many styles and genres. His works have been recorded and performed by Buddy Rich, Woody Herman, Count Basie, Dizzy Gillespie, Mel Torme, Chaka Khan, Harry James, Bill Watrous, and Phil Woods just to name a few. Though his major output has been in jazz, he has had works performed and recorded for symphony orchestra, string chamber orchestra, brass quintet, and other diverse ensembles. Most recently, Mr.

Mason Victoria's Sonuskapos Jazz Orchestra

Directed by Mason Victoria, the Sonuskapos Jazz Orchestra (SSJO) is an 18-piece big band that he founded in 2014. The members of the SSJO consist of some of the finest emerging jazz musicians in the GTA, who collectively aim to inspire and strive to push the limits of contemporary big band by attracting audiences through all-original compositions and arrangements. The ensemble performs original works by its members - over thirty original compositions and arrangements within its first year of formation.

Chelsea McBride's Socialist Night School

Chelsea McBride's Socialist Night School is a unique cross-generational collective of Toronto-based jazz musicians. Award winning veterans like William Carn, Colleen Allen and Brownman Ali stand next to the city's hottest 20-somethings in this contemporary modern big band. Bandleader Chelsea McBride's complex original compositions have been called “picturesque”, “cinematic” and “joyful” by media, and are influenced by the lineage of Bob Brookmeyer, Maria Schneider and Darcy James Argue. The Socialist Night School is a story-telling vehicle for McBride's evocative writing style.

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