Supporting Musical Performances in Saskatchewan
UofS Jazz Ensemble,
Saskatoon Musicians: Gerard Weber & Brett Graham,
The 2021 Saskatchewan Music Conference is proud to support music education and performers in Saskatchewan. This year's conference will feature a variety of local entertainment, including performances by the University of Saskatchewan Jazz Ensemble, Garth Prince, and Saskatoon musicians Gerard Weber and Brett Graham.
We hope you enjoy SMC's entertainment lineup as we support local artists and music programs this year!
Above: view of the 2020 SMC entertainment provided by the University of Saskatchewan and University of Regina Interuniversity Jazz Ensemble.
Garth Prince is a professional vocal performer with years of experience in community building through song, dance and instruments. He performs interactive music workshops in schools across Canada and encourages cultural diversity in work and play environments that appeal to students of all ages and abilities. His latest children’s album with picture-book garnered award nominations in the current Canadian Folk Music Awards and Western Canadian Music Awards. He continues to produce music that preserves the cultural heritage of Africa for future generations and helps non-Africans discover languages, cultural insight and stories from the Motherland.
Silas Friesen / UofS Jazz Ensemble Music Engineer
Silas Friesen (MMus ’19, BMus ’17) is a Toronto-based multi-instrumentalist, arranger, composer, and educator from a musical family of eight. Active in many idioms, he has performed with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Saskatoon Jazz Orchestra, Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra, Vancouver Brass Project, Music on Main, Tommy Banks, Jim Brenan, Friesen Family Band, and the Caspian Ensemble, among others. When the pandemic shut down most of his musical projects last spring, he turned to online collaboration as a medium and outlet, forming the Silas Friesen Virtual Jazz Orchestra to record a trio of his pieces, as well as Cross Canada Brass. In addition, Silas has become sought after as a digital performance consultant presenting workshops and producing videos for other groups, including work contracted through Austin Kruzcek of Jazz Lesson Videos.
The Saskatchewan Intercollegiate Jazz Ensemble (SIJE) is an annual special project designed for implementation at the Saskatchewan Music Conference. The SIJE is comprised of university students from the U of S and the U of R who have worked together remotely to create a virtual big band and combo performance at SMC. Jazz Ensemble Directors, Dean McNeill (U of S) and Dave Dick (U of R), are very grateful for home grown Saskatchewan musical talent Silas Friesen (www.silasfriesen.ca) for serving as producer and audio and video mixer/editing for this virtual SIJE project. This project provides an excellent opportunity for university students from across the province to interact, collaborate and get to know each other. The SIJE has been a highlight for musicians from both of our provincial universities, and we are very pleased to have the opportunity to continue this project virtually this Fall.
For more information on the ensembles, visit:
Brett Graham, Vibraphone
Brett Graham (Vibraphone) is a Saskatoon percussionist that plays in a wide variety of styles, performing regularly as a solo artist and in jazz combos. He received his Bachelor's of Music degree in Performance from the University of Saskatchewan. Recently, he has been studying solo vibraphone and free improvisation with a community of mallet enthusiasts led by Tony Micelli. Brett is a member of the Gerard Weber Group, a jazz-fusion band dedicated to performing the music of Pat Metheny. Other groups he has performed with include: the Saskatoon Brass Band, Saskatoon, Stonefrigate Jazz Band, the Rory Lynch Quartet, Saskatoon Summer Players, and the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra.