October 13, 2018
SJO Artist In Residence Project Presents: Canada 150 Suite
Ft. Guest Directors Gordon Foote & Richard Gillis
The SJO is dedicated to jazz-centered music education and to featuring Canadian composers whose work intersects specifically with the large jazz ensemble idiom. To this end we are delighted to present a ‘double header’ meeting of the minds concert including Prof. Gordon Foote who is arguably Canada’s most well-respected big band directors. Within this Artists in Residence program Prof. Foote will work with Saskatoon’s high school bands, adult community big bands, the UofS Jazz Ensemble, the Saskatoon Youth Jazz Orchestra and, with the SJO itself. The grand finale concert will feature Dr. Richard Gillis, Prof. Foote and the SJO crew including the Saskatchewan premier of the Canada 150 Suite with contributing composers including David Braid, Dean McNeill, Richard Gillis, and Jeff Presslaff, and many more!
December 13, 14 & 15 2018
North Battleford, Moose Jaw & Saskatoon
SJO Holiday Swing... And Then Some!
Three nights, three cities!
Backed by popular demand the SJO will again be performing stunning classic and modern/contemporary arrangements of holiday classics to help ‘swing’ the community into the holiday spirit. This SJO SK tour will also feature Saskatoon’s acclaimed vocalist Jessica Robinson and the entire SJO swinging crew.
May 26, 2019
SJO Reimagines the Music of Steely Dan
Ft. Ray Baril, Jim Head & Jamie Cooper
The music of Steely Dan helped to define an important musical era in the 1970s. Under the guest direction of award winning Canadian saxophonist/conductor Ray Baril the SJO will reinterpret the music of Steely Dan with a refreshing yet authentic jazz big band ‘take’ on this iconic repertoire. If you love Steely Dan and the SJO this concert is not to be missed!with special guests Ray Baril (sax), Jim Head (guitar), Jamie Cooper (drums).
About the SJO
The Saskatoon Jazz Orchestra (SJO) is committed to presenting the highest caliber professional large jazz ensemble music through its programming and through the featuring of local and nationally/internationally celebrated jazz talent. Through these concert activities the SJO delivers top-quality art music to the city of Saskatoon and beyond while professionally developing many of our own established and emerging jazz musicians.
While some SJO concerts are retrospective in nature (e.g. Friends Remembered 2015 SK. tour, Tribute to Duke Ellington, Tribute to Frank Sinatra), others are visionary (e.g. 2014 jazz festival performance of Phil Dwyer’s Changing Seasons (for large jazz orchestra, string orchestra and classical solo violinist Mark Fewer), large ensemble orchestrations of Mike Rud’s Juno award winning CD Notes on Montreal). All concerts feature important current and emerging musicians whose work intersects with the large jazz ensemble idiom specifically.
For many years SJO Artistic Director Dean McNeill directed the Metro Jazz Ensemble of Saskatoon (MJE), which was the precursor and indeed the inspiration for the Saskatoon Jazz Orchestra.