Youth Jazz Showcase

Each year, Toronto Downtown Jazz brings together three groups, featuring emerging jazz artists from around the country and around the world, for two days of music, mentorship and fun. Day one, hosted by Youth Jazz Canada at Humber College, includes rehearsals, jam sessions and shared musical experiences; the Youth Jazz Showcase culminates on day two with a performance by all three groups. Details on the 2014 Youth Jazz Showcase are coming soon. The 2013 Youth Jazz Showcase featured:

The National Youth Jazz Combo
Over 40 talented high school jazz musicians from across Canada applied and this past spring seven outstanding players were selected to form the 2013 NYJC. The group’s performance season includes events such as MusicFest Canada Nationals, the TD Toronto Jazz Festival, the Beaches Jazz Festival, and venues such as the Rex Hotel and Toronto’s newest jazz club, The Jazz Bistro. The NYJC will premiere two new compositions written for the group by Canadian composers Mike Malone and Nancy Walker. At the end of the season, the group will record in Humber College’s state-of-the-art recording studio. Under the direction of Kirk MacDonald, the 2013 National Youth Jazz Combo is: Virginia Frigault-MacDonald, clarinet; Emily Steinwall, tenor saxophone; Thomas UpJohn, trumpet; Ewen Farncombe, piano; Zachary Stuckey, guitar; Jon Chapman, bass; Norbert Botos, drums.

The Christian Li Group
The Christian Li Group plays with a dynamism that breaks down intricate structures into free-floating energy. Compositions are written for and informed by each member of the group. Their idiosyncrasies and diverse backgrounds feed a music that exists for and because of those who experience it. Members of the band are Christian Li, piano; Matthew Halpin, tenor; Zach Brown, bass; Sergio Martinez, percussion; and Roberto Giaquinto, drums.

Chihiro Yamazaki + Route 14 Band
Chihiro Yamazaki + Route 14 Band, a new-generation instrumental jazz group from Japan, have already produced numerous concerts and musical events around Japan and internationally. They recently performed at Clinton’s Tavern in Toronto as part of Japan Nite during Canadian Music Week 2013. Chihiro Yamazaki, a.k.a Anna, also plays trumpet in the well know brass band group “Tokyo Brass Style”, which has sold over 20,000 CDs and now records with Universal Music Label. The Route 14 unique sound style of “singing instruments” comes from a fusion of jazz, classical, rock and other styles. Live appearances include The Park Jazz Live Contest in Japan and at the Sumida Street Jazz Festival. Their soon to be released classic cover album The Nutcracker/Tchaikovsky was debuted at the Tenku Theatre with Tokyo Adachi City. Chihiro Yamazaki + Route 14 Band is one of the most remarkable bands to emerge from Japan.

The Youth Jazz Showcase is made possible in part by a grant from the Ken Page Memorial Trust.

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