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Sunday, April 7th


Francis Winspear Centre for Music, 8:00pm

University of Alberta Symphonic Wind Ensemble
Angela Schroeder, Director

Program to be chosen from:

Circuits Cindy McTee
...and the mountains rising nowhere Joseph Schwnanter
Concerto for Alto Saxophone Ida Gotkovsky (Ben Whittier, alto saxophone)
Twist Jodie Blackshaw
Steampunk Suite Mvt. 4 Erika Svanhoe


University of Manitoba Wind Ensemble
Jacquie Dawson, Director

Firefly Ryan George
Duende Luis Serrano Alarcon
Into the Silent Land Steve Danyew
Wayfaring Stranger Christopher Nelson
Two-lane Blacktop James David


Monday, April 8th


Francis Winspear Centre for Music, 8:00pm

MacEwan University Percussion Ensemble
Brian Thurgood, Director

Repertoire to be chosen from:

Sofapilla Chuck Ricot 
Perpetuo Thomas R. Marceau
Coventry Carol Traditional arr.Brian Blume 
Rattle the Cage Gene Koshinski 
Napali Ryan Loud  
Boom Bap Nick Werth
Orchestrations of the Underground Toby Fox


MacEwan University Faculty/Alumni Big Band 
Ray Baril, Director

New Beginnings comp. by Fred Stride
Dulces Suenos comp. by Kent Sangster
Exhale comp. by Tom Van Seters & Chandelle Rimmer
Darn That Dream comp. by Jimmy Van Heusen / arr. by Craig Brenan
Pipe Dreams
     I – Choroque
     II – Bhairav
     III - Feadóg
comp. by Allan Gilliland
Yes or No comp. by Wayne Shorter / arr. by Gilliland
Banking on the Blues comp. by Pete Coulman

Special Guest Artist - James Walker is performing a new piece written for him and the MacEwan Ensemble by Edmonton composer (and Dean of Fine Arts and Communication) Allan Gilliland.  The piece was commissioned by the festival in honour of our 20th anniversary and tonight's performance is a premiere.

**Please Note: we expect a large turnout for this concert, not all participants may find a seat**


River City Big Band

Now in its  21st year, the River City Big Band is one of the premier jazz organizations in Canada. Our members all share a common enthusiasm for big band jazz.  We perform music that spans from the classics of the big band era through to the modern repertoire of today.

In addition to getting together to play for the sheer exhilaration of making music, we perform in a variety of settings throughout the community including jazz festivals, featured concerts and with guest artists, private functions and school events.

The band’s repertoire is extremely diverse, ranging from early Ellington, through Goodman, Shaw, Basie, and Kenton, to the many great arrangers and composers of today such as Gordon Goodwin and Tom Kubis.  The band also regularly features original compositions and arrangements by Larry Schrum, and Allan Gilliland, Chair of the Music Department and Head of Composition at Grant MacEwan University, who is also a member of the band’s trumpet section.  Most of RCBB’s shows program three or four of these great charts, making each concert a unique musical experience.

The band has released two CDs: “Just Friends” (2010) and “River” (2012) both of which largely feature the work of Allan and Larry.

Tuesday, April 9


Francis Winspear Centre for Music, 8:00pm

'Nuf Sed
Scott Leithead, Director

Repertoire to be chosen from:

Stop, Just Love Us the Duo
Headlock Imogen Heap Arr. Sixth Wave
Both Sides Now Joni Mitchell Arr. Keith Power
Revelation Jimmy Haslip & Russell Serrante, Arr. Take 6
Positivity Stevie Wonder arr. Jennifer McMillan
Grazin’ in the Grass Philemon Hou & Harry Elston, Arr. Sixth Wave
My Heart With You The Rescues, Arr. Quintense
Nobody Love Tori Kelly, Arr. Matthew Chalmers
Redemption Song Bob Marley, Arr Jon Day 
Katosimme Kauneuteen Rajaton 
New Day Carol Welsman, Arr. Jen Barnes 
You Didn’t Know Me When Harry Connick Jr. Arr. Matthew Chalmers 
Night Scented Stock/Cloudbusting Kate Bush arr. Suba Sankaran 
Good Old-Fashioned Lover Boy Queen arr. Suba Sankaran
Standing By Pentatonix Arr. Matthew Chalmers


Mass Choir
Dr. Graeme Langager, Director


Scott Leithead, Director

Repertoire to be chosen from:

Serenity Daniel Elder
Serenity Ola Gjeilo
Agnus Dei Jacob Narverud
Lunar Lullaby Jacob Narverud
Noel Kituba piece
The Ballad of the One Armed Man Timothy Michael Powell
Vindo Reinis Sëjäns 
Nanay Tatay Ily Maniano 
I Love You/What a Wonderful World arr. Craig Hella Johnson
Unclouded Day arr. Shawn Kirshner

Performer Bios

University of Alberta Symphonic Wind Ensemble

The Symphonic Wind Ensemble is a group of 50 of the university's most talented wind and percussion musicians, directed by Dr. Angela Schroeder. The Symphonic Wind Ensemble performs the most serious and challenging wind band music available. With essentially one player to a part, the repertoire is largely music that was originally conceived for the wind band. Recognized in national festivals and internationally, the Symphonic Wind Ensemble performs four concerts a year and several performances away from the campus and for special events.

The ensemble has performed with notable soloists including Dr. Brian Bowman (euphonium), Jeff Nelson (horn), Jens Lindemann (trumpet), Dr. Matthew Coley (percussion), Jeff Campbell (clarinet), Lidia Khaner (oboe), Dr. Allison Balcetis (saxophone), and the Quatour International de Saxophones (saxophone quartet). The ensemble has hosted two Pulitzer Prize winning composers on campus – Michael Colgrass and John Corigliano - and performed the Canadian premiere performance of Corigliano’s Circus Maximus: Symphony No. 3 for large Wind Ensemble, under the supervision of the composer. In 2010, the Symphonic Wind Ensemble performed at the regional conference of the College Band Directors National Association in Reno, NV. Most recently the ensemble were invited performers at the Percy Grainger Wind Band Festival in Chicago, IL, and had the distinction of performing at Orchestra Hall – home of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra – in March 2016. They have participated in numerous composition consortiums, including works by Jonathan Newman and Libby Larsen, and continue to program Canadian premiere performances annually.

The Symphonic Wind Ensemble participates in the annual Department of Music Concerto Competition, offering students the opportunity to perform a solo concerto with the ensemble. In addition, the ensemble hosts the University of Alberta High School Honour Band each spring, inviting students from across the province to come to campus to work and perform with members of the Symphonic Wind Ensemble as well as our applied instrumental faculty. Alumni of SWE have gone on to positions with major orchestras, military bands – even the world-famous Canadian Brass!


Angela Schroeder, Director

A native of Alberta, Dr. Angela Schroeder is currently Associate Professor of Music in the Department of Music at the University of Alberta. She is the Director of Bands, the Area Coordinator for the Winds and Percussion, oversees all areas of instrumental ensembles, and conducts the Symphonic Wind Ensemble and Summer Band. She teaches undergraduate courses in conducting and wind band education, and works with graduate students in instrumental conducting. She previously taught conducting at the University of North Texas in Denton, Texas. Angela is also the conductor of the St. Albert Community Band, an ensemble that is currently in their 46th concert season. This ensemble recently completed their first overseas tour, performing throughout Austria and Germany.

Dr. Schroeder completed undergraduate degrees in Music and Education at the University of Calgary, majoring in Secondary Music Education, with performance studies in piano and trumpet. She also completed the Diploma of Fine Arts in Wind Band Conducting under the supervision of Glenn Price. After a teaching career at various secondary schools in the Calgary area, she entered the Long Term Residency program at The Banff Centre, where she studied and performed on piano, trumpet and as a conductor. Angela entered the Master's program in Wind Conducting at Northwestern University in 2002, where she studied with Mallory Thompson and earned the Master of Music in Conducting. In 2007, she completed the degree Doctor of Musical Arts in Wind Band Conducting at the University of North Texas, under the supervision of Eugene Corporon.

Angela Schroeder is well known in the Alberta music education community, not only through her teaching and conducting both in schools and in community music organizations, but through her involvement as an executive director of the Alberta Band Association for several years. Angela has performed on cornet with the Mill Creek Colliery Band and was the Principal Trumpet for the Concordia University Orchestra for seven seasons. Angela has guest conducted and adjudicated numerous wind bands in festivals and clinics throughout Canada, the United States, Austria, Germany, Australia and Thailand. She is a contributor in nine volumes of the Teaching Music through Performance in Band series, which profile wind literature for all levels of instrumental instruction, published by GIA. She is joyfully married to husband Geoffrey and mother to her brilliant sons, Joshua and Jonah.

University of Manitoba Wind Ensemble

The University of Manitoba Desautels Faculty of Music is home to approximately 250 undergraduate and graduate music students. Both local and international students have chosen the Desautels Faculty of Music for its rich tradition of excellence in academia and performance. The U of M Wind Ensemble is one of several large performing ensembles in the faculty. It is an auditioned group primarily made up of music majors who represent a variety of program areas such as performance, music education, composition, music history and music theory. Now in its fifth decade, the wind ensemble continues to program and perform first-class repertoire and seeks opportunities to premiere newer works. The U of M Wind Ensemble has performed throughout Manitoba, Western Canada and the upper mid-Western United States. It has been invited as a feature ensemble at the Rocky Mountain Music Festival, the Canadian Cantando Festivals in Edmonton and Sun Peaks, BC., has been recorded for broadcast by CBC Radio and participated numerous times in the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra New Music Festival. The University of Manitoba Wind Ensemble has participated in several consortium commissions an premier performances, most recently the Canadian premiere of Paul Dooley’s Masks and Machines and Steven Danyew’s Into the Silent Land. The group is very honored an excited to be performing at the 2019 Cantando Festival.


Jacquie Dawson, Director

Noted for her unique ability to create an inspiring ensemble experience and sculpt an impressive wind band sound, Jacquie Dawson has had a marked impact on the wind band community in Manitoba for two decades. She is in demand as a guest conductor, clinician and adjudicator across Canada. Guest conducting engagements have included the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, Rising Stars Manitoba Senior Honour Band, the Manitoba Intermediate Honour Band, the Manitoba Junior Honour Band, the International Music Camp, and numerous regional and divisional honour bands. Jacquie has been published in the Canadian Music Educator Journal and the Canadian Winds Journal. She has presented at conferences in Newfoundland and Manitoba as well as the Canadian Music Educators’ Association National Conference. Her research interests are in community music and the relationship between music education and the cultivation of community.

Jacquie served on the board of directors of the Manitoba Band Association from 1999 – 2005 and remains very active with various MBA projects and programs. She is in her eighth season as Artistic Director of The Winnipeg Wind Ensemble. Under Jacquie’s leadership the group has expanded significantly in infrastructure, artistic standard and programming, and has recently launched a new division of the organization, The Winnipeg Youth Wind Ensemble.

MacEwan University Percussion Ensemble

For over 30 years, the MacEwan University Percussion Ensemble directed by Brian Thurgood has become an institution for MacEwan’s drum set students. The ensemble features students who usually focus on playing drum kits, not the types of percussion instruments that audiences can expect to see at the concert. The ensemble provides the students a valuable opportunity to explore the wide variety of techniques and timbres of percussion instruments from around the world. The repertoire is very eclectic and audiences can expect to see and hear over 30 performers and over 50 pieces of equipment on stage.


Brian Thurgood, Director

Brian is Section Head of Drums/Percussion in the MacEwan University Department of Music. An active free lance percussionist, he regularly performs with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra and is a busy clinician in the area


evening concert

MacEwan University Faculty/Alumni Big Band 

The Department of Music at MacEwan University has been devoted to serving musicians who wish to undertake a serious, systematic study of jazz and contemporary popular music. The program offers a Bachelor of Music degree in Performance or Composition, as well as a General Studies with a major in Recording and Production and minors in Music Technology and Production, Music and Career Management and Music Education. Within the milieu of the academic post-secondary music program, students are provided with the skills, insights, competencies, and the credential needed to pursue a career as a professional musician—as a player, a creator, and a leader—in the evolving music industry of the twenty-first century.

The MacEwan University Faculty/Student/Alumni Big Band is an ensemble that has been created for special occasions such as today’s performance. It brings together some of MacEwan’s most accomplished grads from across Canada; current students perform alongside MacEwan fulltime and adjunct faculty, representing the finest in Edmonton’s jazz community.
Big bands have been an integral part of the MacEwan University music program for 45 years. These flagship ensembles provide students with a curricular opportunity to gain performance experience in contemporary big band music. For 34 seasons, MacEwan’s premiere band has been under the directorship of Raymond Baril.

The big bands have had the distinct privilege of working with internationally renowned musicians such as Maria Schneider, Bob Mintzer, Wayne Bergeron, Eddie Daniels, Jack Wilkins, Jens Lindemann, Ernie Watts, Sunny Wilkinson, Phil Woods, Dizzy Gillespie, Bobby Shew, Christine Jensen, as well as Edmonton’s own PJ Perry, and the late Tommy Banks. They have been a featured ensemble at the Edmonton International Jazz Festival, Cantando Music Festival, MusicFest Canada, the Alberta International Band Festival, Rocky Mountain Festival and the International Association of Jazz Educators Conference in Washington D.C.

The big bands perform their own annual concert series, as well as at numerous educational functions and civic and community events, including a performance for the Duke and Duchess of York. In 1990, they recorded a one hour music special for the CBC-FM national network. The students have also traveled to many national music festivals, receiving both Gold and Most Outstanding Band awards in their class. In 2005, the MacEwan Big Band released its first CD, “First Time Out” which received praise from both local and national media.


Ray Baril, Director

Raymond Baril is Assistant Professor of Music and Section Head for Winds and Brass in the Department of Music at Grant MacEwan University, and, for the past 30 years, he has been the Director of the MacEwan University Jazz Ensemble. He is in his 18th season as Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Edmonton Winds and recently has taken on the role as director of the River City Big Band. Prior to his appointment at MacEwan University, Raymond was a music educator with Edmonton Public Schools, conductor of the University of Alberta Concert Band, Executive Director of the Alberta Band Association and, worked as assistant conductor for the Cosmopolitan Music Society. Raymond remains a much sought after national clinician and adjudicator as well as a featured guest speaker at music education conferences across the country.

Raymond continues to work as one of Edmonton’s busiest saxophonists and woodwind doublers. He was a regular member of the Tommy Banks Big Band for 25 years and is currently a member of the Edmonton Jazz Orchestra. He has appeared with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra on numerous occasions as a section member and soloist, as well as a guest conductor. He also continues to be in demand as both a conductor and woodwind specialist for pit orchestras in various local and touring productions. In 2005, Raymond’s ensembles released two CDs: First Time Out with the Grant MacEwan College/University of Alberta Big Band and Among Friends with the New Edmonton Wind Sinfonia. In 2011, the New Edmonton Wind Sinfonia released a second CD, O Music, which featured the wind band works of Edmonton composer Allan Gilliland, and won a Western Canadian Music award in 2012.

Raymond attended Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois where he received a Master of Music degree in conducting. He holds undergraduate degrees in both music performance and education from the University of Alberta, and is currently working on his Doctorate in Saxophone Performance at the University of Alberta. Raymond has been the recipient of many awards for his contribution to music and music education including the Tommy Banks Award, presented by the Alberta Foundation for the Arts, and the David Peterkin Memorial Award, presented by Phi Beta Mu. He has also received the Elkhorn Award for Director of the Year by the Alberta Band Association, the Best Teaching Practices Award from the Alberta Teachers’ Association, a District Service Award from Edmonton Public Schools, and an Excellence in Teaching Award from Alberta Learning.


James Walker, Special Guest Artist

Walker was raised in Greenville, Kentucky and graduated from Central City High School in Central City, Kentucky. He attended the University of Louisville, where he graduated with honors. After graduation, Walker joined the United States Military Academy Band at West Point; at the same time, he studied flute with Harold Bennett, principal flutist of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. Other significant teachers have been Sarah Fouse, Francis Fuge, James Pellerite, and Claude Monteux. In 1969, he joined the Pittsburgh Symphony as associate principal flutist. After eight years in Pittsburgh, Zubin Mehta appointed him as principal flutist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, a position he held from 1977 until 1984. He also played principal flute for the New York Philharmonic (under Mehta) for that orchestra's 1982 South American tour.

In 1980, Walker organized a jazz quartet featuring flute, piano, bass and drums. This group later become known as Free Flight. In 1984, he left the Los Angeles Philharmonic to concentrate on his work with the quartet and to do freelance work in Southern California and beyond. "After 15 years as a classical player, it was enough", Walker said in 1987. "In the beginning, I felt I was playing honest, wonderfully inspiring music. But after hundreds of repetitions, it wasn't so inspiring."[2] He has collaborated with many other flutists including James Galway and Jean-Pierre Rampal, and has also worked with other well-known musicians including Wayne Shorter, Leonard Bernstein, Dudley Moore and many others in concert and recordings.

Walker is currently on the faculty of the USC Thornton School of Music and the Colburn School. He has been visiting professor at Duquesne University, the University of North Texas, University of Texas at Austin, and Arizona State University. He has conducted flute master classes and clinics in the U.S., Canada, Europe, South America, Korea, Japan and Russia.

Allan Gilliland, Composer

Dr. Gilliland is one of Canada’s busiest composers. He has written music for solo instruments, orchestra, choir, brass quintet, wind ensemble, big band, film, television and theatre. His music has been performed by ensembles and soloists from around the world and recorded on over 20 CDs.

From 1999‐2004, Gilliland was composer-in-residence with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra. He has also been composer-in-residence at the Festival of the Sound in Parry Sound, the Colours of Music Festival in Barrie, Ontario and the Strata New Music Festival in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. In 2002, his orchestral work On the Shoulders of Giants took first prize at the prestigious Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra’s Centara New Music Festival Composers Competition. In 2012, his CD O Music was nominated for two Western Canadian Music Awards and won for Best Classical Composition. Allan has also won composition contests sponsored by Pro Coro Canada and the Alberta Band Association as well as first place in the Jean Coulthard Competition for Composers and the Lydia Pals Composers Competition.

Gilliland holds a diploma in Jazz Studies (trumpet) from Humber College, a Bachelor of Music degree in performance and a Master of Music degree in composition from the University of Alberta and a PhD in Composition from the University of Edinburgh. He has taught at the University of Alberta, the University of Edinburgh, Red Deer College and MacEwan University in Edmonton, Alberta , Canada where he is currently the Dean of Fine Arts and Communication.


'Nuf Sed

‘Nuf Sed is one of three vocal ensembles currently run by Edmonton’s TIME Association (Today’s Innovative Music Edmonton).   The group enjoys singing music in many contemporary styles from jazz to pop to gospel. This season the group is excited to be featured at the Edmonton and Whistler Cantando Festivals as well as the Canadian Rocky Mountain Festival.   In January 2019 the group toured Japan for two weeks with stops in Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka.  They are excited to have the chance to work with Carol Welsman, Suba Sankaran and the Swingle Singers this season.    ‘Nuf Sed is directed by Scott Leithead

Kokopelli choir

Founded in 1996, Kokopelli from Edmonton, Alberta will celebrate its twenty-third season in 2018-2019. The Choir is conducted by Scott Leithead.

Kokopelli has been a featured ensemble at many events, provincially, nationally, and internationally. These include the Rocky Mountain National Music Festival, the Cantando Festival, Podium (the biannual conference of the Association of Canadian Choral Communities), the regional conference of the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), the International Society of Music Educators conference, and others. In addition to many North American cities, the choir has toured to Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Malaysia, Namibia, South Africa, Botswana, Swaziland, and Zambia.

Kokopelli is often the ambassador for the choir association and, as such, has received several awards for its work with youth, music education, and the African Projects Fund. In 2015, the choir was featured at the Canadian Music Educators National Conference in Winnipeg. In the summer of 2017, the choir undertook a tour to Italy and Switzerland to participate in a festival on the Lake Garda, among other adventures.  In the summer of 2018 they returned to Africa on their 4th tour to this amazing part of the world.  The upcoming season the choir is excited to be singing several productions with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra.  They also have tours planned to Saskatchewan in February and to the Rocky Mountain Festival in Banff in April. In addition, they plan to tour to the BC Gulf Islands with the Vancouver Youth Choir in July 2019.


Scott Leithead, Director

Scott Leithead is the founder and Artistic Director of Canada's Kokopelli Choir Association and TIME Association from Edmonton, Alberta. He has been invited to conduct provincial, national and state honour choirs on twenty-five occasions and he has presented workshops in North America and beyond. Notable appearances include: conducting the Alberta Youth Choir for Choir Alberta’s 40th Anniversary; conducting the Ellison Canadian Honour Choir on five occasions; conducting the 2016 ACDA NW Regional Youth Choir in Seattle.  He has adjudicated both the ACCC National Competition for Amateur Canadian Choirs, the Kathaumixw International Choir Festival (2014 and 2016) and Finland’s Tampere Choir Festival in 2017.  Under his direction, Kokopelli was a winner of both the 2015 CBC National Competition for Canadian Amateur Choirs and the 2015 and 2016 Canadian National Music Competition.

Scott has a passion for music from southern Africa and he has been invited to work with choirs in South Africa and Namibia on numerous occasions. In 2008/09, Scott was on sabbatical in Namibia where he worked with the Mascato Youth Choir and many other choirs in southern Africa. Scott’s passion for innovative and unique choral music experiences has shaped the direction of the Kokopelli Choir Association.

This season Scott will return to conduct the Manitoba Provincial Honour Choir for the 4th time as well as the 2019 Ellison Canadian Honour Choir (Ottawa).  He will be adjudicating festivals and giving workshops in Ontario, San Francisco, Vancouver, Whistler, Newfoundland, and Saskatchewan.  His contemporary vocal ensemble ‘Nuf Sed was excited to tour Japan in January 2019.