Bios

Shannon Gunn and the Bullettes – past, present and future:

Altos:  Sarah Hughes, Halley Shoenberg, Leigh Pilzer

Tenors: Anita Thomas, Megan Nortrup, Leigh Pilzer, Halley Shoenberg

Bari Sax: Leigh PilzerStephanie Longoria, Michelle Acton, Alex Flanagan

Trumpets: Rachel Therrien, Liesl WhitakerCarol Morgan, Amy McCabe, Eliza Minster, Brenda Padilla, Kate Amrine, Rachel McGrain, Cheryl Terwilliger, Caeley Niess, Chris Walker (He’s part of the fam, you know… ;), Charmaine Michelle

Trombone: Jen Krupa, Melissa Gardiner, Shannon Gunn, Kirsten Warfield, Sarah Meltzer, Amy Loudin, Raynel Frazier

Piano: Amy K. Bormet, Lianna Gekker, Miki Yamanaka

Bass: Amy Shook, Cyndy Elliott, Karine Chapdelaine, Adi Meyerson

Drums: Lydia Lewis, Isabel DeLeon, Angeliqua Bethea, Savannah Harris, Tina Raymond

Vocals: Jessica Boykin-SettlesLena Seikaly, Amy Bormet, Danielle Wertz

Bios

Shannon Gunn

Shannon IMG_3034Hailed by the Washington City Paper as “D.C.’s Best Trombonist 2015” and the DistrictNow Blog as “Best Trombonist 2017,”  DC based Shannon Gunn is known for her exceptional tone and her grandiose project-du-jour. She is currently the artist in residence on Tuesday nights at Columbia Station in Adams Morgan as leader of the “Firebird Organ Trio,” named “DC’s Best Small Ensemble 2016” by the Washington City Paper. She also runs DC’s premiere all-women jazz orchestra, “Shannon Gunn and the Bullettes,” including successful performances at the Kennedy Center, Castleton Theatre House, DC Jazz Festival, Washington Women in Jazz Festival, Takoma Park Jazz Festival, Jazz on Jackson Place, Westminster Jazz Night, Nomadic Jazz, Great Gatsby Inaugural Ball, Goethe Institute, National Jazz Workshop, Gallery O on H, Arts on the Avenue, Bohemian Caverns, and  Dardanella. As a member of the Bohemian Caverns Jazz Orchestra, she’s had the privilege of playing with notable artists such as Oliver Lake, Cheryl Bailey, Yotam Silverstein, Wycliffe Gordon, Ken Schaphorst, and for Miho Hazama. Additionally, as lead trombone player at Michigan State University, she played with Billy Taylor, Rodney Whitaker, and Marian McPartland. She earned her Masters of Music in Jazz Studies from George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia and also attended James Madison University and Michigan State University for her music studies. She produced “The JazzCast,” a podcast dedicated to curated listening sessions with jazz musicians. In addition to the ensembles listed above, Shannon Gunn has performed with the Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra, Reunion Music Society, American Festival Pops Orchestra, Manassas Chorale, at various TV stations such as  DCTV, CBS Morning Show (local) in Richmond,  WJLA ABC in DC as part of the Gatsby Ball promo, and has subbed in with the DIVA! Jazz Orchestra for Maurice Hines’ “Tappin Thru’ Life” as well as subbed on tour with Monika Herzig. She resides in Virginia with her husband, Timothy, and her dog, Faith. Photo Credit Suzette Niess.

Amy K. Bormet

Amy K. Bormet is an in-demand pianist, vocalist, and composer. The quintet from her debut album, Striking, was featured as part of the Mary Lou Williams Jazz Festival at the Kennedy Center. As an advocate for women in music, Amy created the Washington Women in Jazz Festival in 2011 and continues to serve as executive director. One of Amy K Bormet’s latest projects, Ephemera, is a platform for her new art songs with improvisation. Ephemera performed a two-week tour of Sweden.

Along with her performance career, Ms. Bormet is a prolific composer frequently combining improvisation with concert music. Recently Amy composed several pieces for the Capital City Symphony and her jazz ensemble, and premiered a concert of new works for string quartet and her jazz piano trio at the Smithsonian American Art Museum. She has been commissioned to write for Wild Up’s Work concert for classical bassist/vocalist Maggie Hasspacher, the Bohemian Caverns Jazz Orchestra, the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra, Afro-Blue, Howard University Jazz Ensemble, and the Brad Linde Ensemble among others. In addition to her albums, Amy’s recorded music can be heard in short films, radio dramas, and audio books.

Amy is an alumna of the Kennedy Center’s residency program for composer/performers, Betty Carter’s Jazz Ahead, the inaugural Mary Lou Williams Emerging Artist Workshop, and the Jazz Composer’s Orchestral Institute (American Composer’s Orchestra). She received her bachelor’s degree in Jazz Studies/Piano Performance from the University of Michigan, where she studied with Ellen Rowe and Geri Allen, and her master’s degree in Jazz Studies from Howard University.

Press Quotes:

“We have been tracking her career as she has been making her way, as her star is on the rise…Amy Bormet’s “Striking” is the name of her group, and an apt description of Bormet herself.”
– Kevin Struthers, Director of Jazz Programming at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts

Karine Chapdelaine

karine_hmb8180-1Karine is currently the Professor of Jazz Bass at Mary Washington University, a music teacher, and a busy freelance musician. She holds a BM from McGill University, and a MM in Music and a MM in Music Education from Howard University. In 2011, Karine was awarded ‘Outstanding Performance in Jazz at the College Graduate Level’ by Downbeat Magazine. Karine’s professional performance career has taken her all over the world, and she has appeared at major venues and festivals such as The Pori Jazz Festival, The North Sea Jazz Festival, The Montreal International Jazz Festival, Carnegie Hall, and The John F Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Karine has performed with Marvin Hamlisch and The National Symphony Orchestra, Bobby McFerrin, McCoy Tyner, Paquito D’Rivera, Mary Halvorson, Allison Miller, and The Washington Ballet. During her tenure with the Canadian based pop band ‘Creature’ she had the opportunity to record at SARM studios in London, where Paul McCartney, Jimi Hendrix, and Madonna has recorded some of their work. Karine is currently endorsed by Godin Guitars. Photo Credit Bassmint Photography by Herman Burney.

Tina Raymond

Tina Raymond’s highly praised debut CD Left Right Left is a musical journey through the American Progressive movement. Raymond conceived of the project in the aftermath of the 2016 presidential election. The frustration that she felt in the days that followed quickly turned into a desire to act, using her music as an expression of resistance.

Since moving to Los Angeles in 2008, Tina Raymond has been steadily building a reputation as an inventive, first-call drummer. She’s shared the stage with many jazz luminaries including Bobby Bradford, Bennie Maupin, Emil Richards, Art Lande, and Vinny Golia. She can be heard on several albums, including Cathlene Pineda’s “A Week’s Time,” Jon Armstrong’s “Burnt Hibiscus,” and “The Harold Trio,” also featuring Amy K Bormet and Biggi Vinkeloe.

She is currently a full-time professor of music at Los Angeles City College in Hollywood, CA, one of just a few women throughout the country who have a full-time faculty position in jazz. Besides being a mainstay on the Southern California jazz scene, she performs, adjudicates, and presents workshops worldwide at a variety of venues, festivals, and conventions.

Raymond attended California Institute of the Arts, studying African ewe music with Ghanaian chief Alfred Ladzekpo, and jazz drum set with Joe LaBarbera, Jeff Hamilton, and John Von Ohlen.

Raymond is endorsed by Sabian, Regal Tip, and Remo.

“Throughout it all, Raymond displays ferocious chops and a remarkable sense of balance, supporting the overall group sound as much as she asserts her individual voice. In fact, her equipoise as a drummer is perhaps the most salient aspect of this disc, proving time and again that when it comes to left and right, it’s coordination – not separation – that produces the most satisfying results.” – Downbeat Editor’s Pick by Brian Zimmerman

“Tina Raymond is another strong female, a forward thinker and a change-maker. She isn’t afraid to express her revolutionary spirit on this compact disc of music. Her arrangements are powerful and expressive. Her artistry; undeniable… she is one of a few women throughout the country in a full-time faculty position in jazz. Even more importantly, she is an exceptional drummer. Every cut on this CD is an exclamation mark on the word excellent.” – Musical Memoirs by Dee Dee McNeil

“With loads of material you wouldn’t expect on a jazz trio date, Raymond shows why she’s rising to the top in LA due to eyes and ears approaching things being wide open. An auspicious debut from a cat with a 360 degree observational perspective that doesn’t fail her. Hot stuff.” – Midwest Record by Chris Spector

Charmaine Michelle

During her 20s, trumpeter Charmaine Michelle took a break from the music world to build her family. In 2008, she rededicated herself to pursuing a music career and began playing at local venues in the Baltimore/DC corridor. With help of friends and mentors, in 2010 she participated in Peabody Conservatory’s Jazz Studies Program headed by legendary saxophonist Gary Thomas. During her matriculation at Peabody, Ms. Michelle was the recipient of the Noble Levi Jolley Sr. Jazz Scholarship and studied under trumpeter-Joe Burgstaller (formerly of the Canadian Brass).

Charmaine Michelle has performed with the Peabody Brass Ensemble, Jazz Orchestra and Jazz Combo, Alex Norris, Steve Wilson, classical pianist Kyungwha Chu, Musicians of Mercy, St. Thomas Episcopal Brass Quintet, Sudanese Rocker mOsno, folk artist and activist Paulo Greogry, spoken word artist Aquil Mizan, Ama Chandra, Marc Evans, Adrian Blu, Dunbar Alumni Big Band, The Dale Acorn Big Band, KREation, Artists against War, and The Ernie Williams Project.

Isabel DeLeon

“March to the tempo of your own beat” is a motto lived by Isabelle De Leon. Learning piano at the age of 4 and drums at the age of 7, she has spent all her life doing music. She began by playing drums in church as early as the age of 7, and at a young age did countless bands and ensembles, including the Maryland Classic Youth Orchestra and the Archdiocese of Washington Honors Band, where she was featured many times on drumset. She most recently graduated from the University of Maryland, where she studied both Jazz drums performance and pre-medicine, and earned honors as a College Park Scholar, Dean’s List student, and member of the Sigma Alpha Iota National Music Fraternity. While at the University of Maryland, she studied under drummer and vibraphonist Chuck Redd, with whom she had the privilege of performing around the DC area.

In 2008 she won the Washington Post Music and Dance Scholarship Award for her performance on drums. In April 2011, she was a featured performer with the Leigh Pilzer and Jen Kruppa quintet at the Smithsonian National American History Museum for a celebrati on of the International Sweethearts of Rhythm and the launching of Jazz Appreciation Month. In the summer of 2011 she was awarded the Stanley Kay Scholarship by the DIVA Jazz Orchestra to attend the New York Summer Festival, where she had the privilege of working with renowned faculty such as Justin DiCioccio, Dick Oates, and David Tull. In both 2012 and 2013, she was the selected drummer for the Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Jazz Orchestra, an honors college band comprised of students from schools along the east coast. With them she performed at the Kennedy Center and St. Peter’s Church in NYC, and worked exclusively with composers/arrangers Mike Tomaro and Eric Richardson. In April 2013, she was the winner of the Washington Women in Jazz Festival’s annual Young-Artist Competition, and will be a featured performer at WWJF 2014. Most recently, she was featured as an Artist-in-Residence at the Strathmore Performing Arts Center for the 2012-2013 season and debuted a commissioned piece.

Despite all this, she manages to practice and perform regularly with her family band, Ivy Rose, where she is a contributing songwriter and arranger, backup vocalist, the drummer and recording pianist. Continually gaining prominence in the DC music scene, they have played at venues such as the Kennedy Center, DAR Constitution Hall, 9:30 Club, and in cities like Toronto, ON and New York City. In April 2010 they had the honor to open for Weezer and Ben Folds at the University of Maryland’s Byrd Stadium after winning a battle of the bands competition at UMD. They also placed 2nd at the Next Big Thing Tour Battle of the Bands at the 9:30 Club and 1st at Quest Battle of the Bands. From December 2011-January 2012, they toured in the Philippines and were guests on multiple radio and TV shows. Last year they were featured on the 2012 season of NBC’s America’s Got Talent and made it as far as the semi-final round in Las Vegas.Isabelle continues to perform all over the DC area and hopes to be working on her debut album in the near future!

Rachel Therrien

Trumpeter, composer, and bandleader, Rachel Therrien already boasts an enviable CV. Known for her very personal signature, she has developed a reputation as a highly-skilled, versatile and creative artist. Winner of the 2015 TD Grand Prize Jazz Award at the Montreal International Jazz Festival and the 2016 Stingray Jazz Rising Star Award, where she presented her second album Home Inspiration, “an emotionally charged show filled improv and exceptional musical orchestration” -FIJM. Therrien just launched “Pensamiento” her new afro-colombian inspired jazz album recorded with 12 musicians in Bogota, Colombia, and she’s starting the production of a third album with her Montreal Quitet.

Native of Rimouski (eastern Quebec, Canada), Rachel is considered one of the most promising jazz musicians in the Québec music scene, playing in a variety of music styles and enriching her talent through experiences from many different cultures. She has shared stages in clubs and concerts all around North and South America as well as the Caribbean with such world-class musicians as Roberto Fonseca, Tony Allen, DIVA Jazz Orchestra, Claudio Roditti, Ken Peplowski, Paquito D’Rivera, Bryan Lynch, David Buchbinder, Pedrito Martinez, Julie Lamontagne, Frédéric Alarie, Beth McKenna Big Band, La Wey Segura, Tylor Mitchel, Benito Gonzales, Vic Vogel, Yacouba Sissoko, Geraldo Piloto, Achilles Liarmakopoulos, Michel Legrand, Carole Welsman, Alex Bellegarde, and great music groups as Nomadic Massive, Mariachi Flor de Toloache, Marco Calliari, Yves Lambert, Lynda Tali, Wesli Band, The Franklin Electric, Skah Shah, Klimax, Orquesta Anacaona. She also worked for Canadian TV Show “Belle et Bum” which lead her to share the stage with great artist such as Marie-Josée Lord, Alex Nevsky, Mara Tremblay, Daniel Boucher, Stéphanie Bédard, Lisa Leblanc, Joseph Edgar, and New York based famous folk singer Joseph Arthur.

Therrien holds a bachelor’s degree in jazz performance from University of Montreal, a degree in arts management and a certificate from Instituto Supérior de Arte, in Havana-Cuba, where she studied classical trumpet, latin jazz, percussion and Cuban music history. She was also selected to participate in 2012, at the Banff Center Jazz and Creative Music workshop held by Dave Douglas and Vdjay Iyer. She has worked with large number of mentors and teachers including Ron DiLauro, Elpidio Chappotin, Laurie Frink, John McNeil, Yasek Manzano, Jonathan Finlayson, Clarence Penn, Michael Rodrigues, Aeoife O’Donnovan, Dave Douglass, Ralph Alessi, Emilio del Monte, George Rubio, and many more.

As a band leader, Rachel runs distinct artistic projects. In 2010, Rachel started her own Quintet with some of the best jazz players from Montreal. (Simon Page on bass, Charles Trudel on Piano, Alain Bourgeois on drums and Benjamin Deschamps on sax.) Her debut album, “On Track” released independently in 2011 got great reviews in the Quebec press, and stood as #1 on “Radio Canada-Espace Musique” chart for more than a week. They also had the opportunity to play at Havana Jazz-Plaza Festival. Since the release of her second album, “Home Inspiration” (2014), on the artist-managed new record label, Multiple Chord Music, she has toured as a band leader in Mid-Ouest USA, Mid-Canada (Ontario), and New York City, in a list of clubs and Festivals including “55Bar (NYC), Andy’s Jazz Club (Chicago), The Rex (Toronto), The Jazz Room (Waterloo), and Upstairs (Montreal). She played to sold out and near-sold out crowds, and has made many new friends and fans along the way. This year, she will be touring in the US, releasing her new afro-colombian inspired jazz album, “Pensamiento”, that was recorded in Bogota, Colombia, in 2014. She will start the production of a third record with her Montreal Quintet, thanks to the TD Grand Prize Jazz Award.

As well as being recognized as an artist that can’t be ignored, Rachel is also a key player on the Montreal Jazz scene, helping it to grow and expand its frontiers by being an example for emerging musicians and actively working for the jazz community. In 2013, she founded the Montreal Jazz Composers Series, bringing more than 200 musician-composers from Canada and the US to showcase their original music and play together for the first time in front of crowd of mainly young non-musicians during Montreal Int’l Jazz Festival. She believes that “Jazz is a philosophy of conversation between musicians from different backgrounds through improvisation, and that we, as musicians, it is our mission to keep jazz alive and to make sure that our generation of non-musicians live the experience and appreciate that unspoken language.”

Sarah Hughes

sarahPhoto cred to Diriki Rice

Sarah Hughes is an alto saxophonist, composer, improviser, educator, and art adventurer hailing from Maryland. She obtained her MM in Jazz Saxophone at the New England Conservatory in May of 2015 and currently freelances in and around Maryland, DC, Virginia, and New York.

Sarah graduated with a bachelor’s degree in music education from the University of Maryland in 2008. While there she studied privately with world-renowned classical saxophonist Dale Underwood. After graduating Sarah taught beginning band and strings in Prince George’s county schools for five years and also maintained two private studios in Maryland and Virginia. During that time she performed in and around DC and New York City with ensembles including the Bohemian Caverns Jazz Orchestra and the Brad Linde Ensemble, a Washington D.C.-based collective dedicated to exploring and expanding the styles of jazz that emerged in the 1950s including bebop, cool jazz, third stream, and free jazz. As part of these ensembles, Sarah shared the stage with jazz greats such as Lee Konitz, Ted Brown, Freddie Redd, Matt Wilson, and Michael Formanek.

While at the New England Conservatory, Sarah studied privately with Jerry Bergonzi, Ran Blake, Donny McCaslin, and Anthony Coleman, all of whom impacted Sarah’s unique approach to improvisation and music-making. Sarah performed on Coleman’s latest album, “You” and has performed with Coleman in concerts at the New England Conservatory as well as Roulette and The Stone in New York.  Sarah studied composition in classes with Ken Schaphorst and also Ben Schwendener, with whom she has performed several duo concerts in Boston.

In September of 2015 Sarah toured Sweden as part of Amy K. Bormet’s “Ephemera” and performed in Sweden’s first Women in Jazz festival. She also recently taught an improvisation workshop, “Improvisation for Everyone: Games and Storytelling” for beginning, intermediate, and advanced instrumentalists in the 2016 Judith Lapple Summer Woodwind Camp in Fairfax, Virginia.  Most recently, she went on tour with an improvising trio “Lead Bubbles”, playing venues in New York, Montreal, and Toronto. Sarah hopes her music and teaching will continue to introduce her to new people, places, and art.

Jessica Boykin-Settles

jessica-edit2-978x1024Jessica Boykin-Settles began her musical studies as a voice major at the Duke Ellington School of the Arts. By her senior year she was the featured vocalist in the school’s jazz orchestra. Upon graduating, she continued her musical pursuits at New School University in New York City. There she had the opportunity to study under the tutelage of great musicians such as Reggie Workman, Junior Mance, Cecil McBee, Arnie Lawrence, Buster Williams, Sheila Jordan, Janet Lawson, Teri Thornton and Dr. Richard Harper. During her stint in New York, Jessica led her own band and had the opportunity to work in a variety of venues in and around New York City. In 1997, Jessica represented the New School University Jazz and Contemporary Music Program at the International Association for Jazz Education (IAJE) Annual Conference in Chicago, Illinois and the International Association of Schools of Jazz (IASJ) Annual Meeting in Siena, Italy.

In May 2004, Jessica Boykin-Settles received a Master of Music degree in Jazz Studies from Howard University in Washington, DC. While there, Jessica sang with Howard’s premier vocal jazz ensemble Afro Blue, under the direction of Connaitre Miller. After graduating, she spent seven years teaching and mentoring students in the Howard University music program. After taking a two-year break to pursue her singing full time, she is back teaching at Howard University as well as directing the Education Program for the DC Jazz Festival. She also teaches and mentors youth with the Washington Jazz Arts Institute under the direction of Davey Yarborough, and conducts workshops and performs with her quartet throughout the Washington, DC metropolitan area. Photo credit Brian Settles.

Halley Shoenberg

Halley Shoenberg photo copyright Michael G. Stewart157 (2)Mastering sound and mood, Halley Shoenberg is an accomplished saxophone and clarinet player whose style is collected from several sources of jazz, theatre and popular music. From swinging originals to noted modern-era favorites, her intelligently inspired brand of music shines with unique clarity.

A multi-instrumentalist who plays clarinet, saxophone and flute, Shoenberg has produced three CD releases, Love Goes ‘Round, Someday, and Private Concert which include several of her original compositions. A native of Silver Spring, Maryland, Halley earned her Bachelor’s degree in Jazz Studies from Indiana University and Master’s in Arts Administration from Florida State University.

As leader of her own “Halley Shoenberg Jazz Quartet” and other ensembles, most recently adding the “Halley’s Hot Gumbo Swingtet,” her concert and festival presentations have won the hearts of jazz enthusiasts who demand master musicianship.

Past performances include the “Halley Shoenberg Octet” in concert at Strathmore Mansion and her bands at DC area festivals such as the Bethesda, MD Fine Arts Festival, Alexandria, VA Jazz Festival and the Silver Spring Swings concert series. As the clarinet soloist in DC’s premiere swing band, Halley is regularly featured on classic swing masterpieces and evening-long Artie Shaw and Benny Goodman tributes. She has played at major venues including the Kennedy Center, National Parks, at the Shenandoah Valley Music Festival and Blues Alley. Her Trio was featured in Worchester, MA at a live performance and broadcast for WICN Radio.

Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw, Buddy DeFranco, and Ken Peplowski influence her clarinet playing. Her saxophone style pays respect to Art Pepper, Lee Konitz, Charlie Parker, Lester Young and Stan Getz. Halley is also inspired by the legendary music of Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Nat King Cole and the Count Basie, Duke Ellington and Stan Kenton big bands.

Having intensely studied classical and jazz, she currently teaches private lessons to young clarinet and saxophone students in addition to performing. At Indiana University’s School of Music Halley studied with David Baker, Dominic Spera, James Campbell, Tom Walsh, Lynn Baker, J.B. Dyas and many more outstanding musician-teachers of performance, history, and composition. After graduation, Shoenberg served as intern in the Smithsonian’s jazz history department. During her arts administration graduate program at Florida State University, she performed and toured with the school’s award-winning jazz ensemble and interned at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

Based in Washington DC, her performances on saxophone in Rhapsody in Blue and the West Side Story Suite have been heard on tour in Germany with the Washington Symphony Orchestra. She has also performed traditional “Dixieland” jazz with the Potomac River Jazz Club’s Federal Focus Jazz Band, which participated in Chilliwack Jazz Festival in British Columbia and at the French Quarter Jazz Festival in New Orleans. Shoenberg has performed in New York, at the Boswell Sisters Centennial in New Orleans and at the Women in Jazz Festival at the Kennedy Center.

In addition to the Halley Shoenberg Jazz Octet, Quartet and Trio, Halley performs and has recorded with the Tom Cunningham (swing) Orchestra, the James Bazen (modern-style) Big Band, the La Salle (1920’s and 30’s jazz) Dance Orchestra, the Bitter Dose (gypsy jazz) Combo, Craig Gildner and Blue Sky 5, and Shannon Gunn and the Bullettes.

Leigh Pilzer 

leigh_tenor_1_by_darwyn_m_daveSaxophonist/arranger Leigh Pilzer has performed at many of Washington, DC’s top jazz venues, including Blues Alley, Twins Jazz, and Westminster Presbyterian. She co-leads the Jen Krupa–Leigh Pilzer Quintet (JLQ), which has been featured at the Atlas Performing Arts Center, Blues Alley, Jazz at the Garden, The Mansion at Strathmore, and the Takoma Park JazzFest, among others.

Leigh is a member of the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra, The DIVA Jazz Orchestra, the Bohemian Caverns Jazz Orchestra, Mike Kamuf’s Little Big Band, and Shannon Gunn and the Bullettes. With SJMO, DIVA, and the National Symphony Orchestra she has toured across the United States and in Austria, Canada, Croatia, Egypt, England, France, Germany, Holland, and Russia. She also freelances with a variety of ensembles in the mid-Atlantic region.

Leigh’s arrangements have been performed by the DC-area premier military jazz ensembles and by college and professional jazz ensembles and brass quintets throughout the country. DIVA recently recorded several of Leigh’s big band arrangements: two can be heard on DIVA’s most recent CD, A Swingin’ Life (2014) and two more will be included on the band’s upcoming release Special Kay, (scheduled for 2015). Another was featured on the soundtrack for Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular (2014). Other arranging credits include horn section writing for recordings by Chuck Brown and Eva Cassidy and orchestrations for the critically-acclaimed show Maurice Hines is Tappin’ Thru Life.

Repertory performances and lecture recitals include “Collaboration in Jazz, Featuring the Music of Gerry Mulligan” and “The Music of The International Sweethearts of Rhythm, Mary Lou Williams, and Melba Liston” with the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra Quintet; “Sax in the City,” featuring the music of Benny Carter, Gerry Mulligan, and Lester Young with the SJMO saxophone and rhythm sections; and “Women in Jazz: The Early Years” and “The Music of Melba Liston” at the Washington Women in Jazz Festival.

Leigh holds a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Composition and Arranging from the Berklee College of Music and Master’s degrees in Jazz Studies and Saxophone Performance from The University of Maryland, College Park. After completing her academic work at Maryland she studied studied traditional and jazz theory at The Catholic University of America with the late Dr. Steven Strunk. Leigh has served on the faculties of the University of Maryland and Towson University, where she has taught Jazz Theory, Jazz Arranging, and Jazz History.

Angeliqua (Angel) Bethea

angel_closeAngeliqua (Angel) Bethea is currently a freshman majoring in Music with a Jazz Studies concentration at George Mason University in Fairfax, V.A. She attended the prestigious Ellington School for the Arts during high school during which she worked closely with the great Davey Yarborough. She also attended the Washington Arts Institute for Jazz each summer for the last 5 years. During her time at Ellington, she had the opportunity to play with Earth Wind and Fire, Patti Labelle, and Sting. She has played at Duke Ellington, the Kennedy Center, and the Strathmore Mansion. While at Ellington, she was able to participate in master classes with Matt Wilson, Terrell Stafford, and Winard Harper’s group. She currently plays with the George Mason Jazz Ensemble, GMU jazz combos, the AVU gospel group, and a local band called D6 that is comprised of former Ellington students. She is also currently playing with the Shannon Gunn and the Bullettes Septet, and recently released an album with them called “It Don’t Mean a Thing…” She currently resides with her family in Washington, DC. 

 

One thought on “Bios

  1. First time I’ve heard of you. Sounds like a great band. Interested in hearing your music. Hope the Bullettes succeed for years to come! Good Luck! Kurt

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