KW Big Band Theory

Big Band classics and contemporary jazz in Kitchener/Waterloo!

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This fantastic big band packs an irresistible whallop of musical entertainment — spirited, talented and fun!

Stephen Preece, KW Jazz Room

About the Band

BBT bw in the barn Dec21

The Big Band Theory had its genesis in Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, without any clear idea where this project might end up. And… WOW! what an explosion of sound when seventeen of Kitchener-Waterloo’s (and beyond) most talented jazzers showed up for that first rehearsal in October 2011. BBT has now finished 11 seasons of music making with a deep repertoire of period music from the swing era (Benny Goodman and Count Basie), contemporary big band arrangements (LAs Big Phat Band), 70s horn bands (Earth, Wind and Fire, Tower of Power). With two albums under their belt (“Evidence”, featuring Don Thompson and “A Swinging Joy”, Christmas) the KW Big Band Theory is an exciting band to hear live. Come check it out, and be prepared to be blown away.

As Ken Hadley, lead alto player says: “This band will part your hair!”

2021 Sunlife Uptown Waterloo Jazz Festival video

For a 2020 testimonial, please read Testimonial Roberts Onsite 2020.

Partners and Shoutouts:

Glen-Woodcock

 

 

 

In June, 2019, Glen Woodcock, Jazz FM 91.1 listed BBT’s recording “Evidence” as one of 14 albums keeping big band music alive. Read the article. Thank you Glen.

BBT has been pleased to work with Hep Cat Swing and the Hep Cat Hoppers, both reputable swing dance facilitators in the Waterloo Region who always augment the excitement of any swing dance.

Arts Fund circular logo 300DPI

 

 

 

 

Big Band Theory is excited to be the recipient of a Waterloo Regional Arts Grant for 2022. We will be recording an album that features Canadian big band composers and arrangers. Watch for a summer or fall release!

Meet the Musical Director Meet the band

Musical Director: Jimmy “T-Bone” Edwards

 

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In September, 2021, as we pull through the Covid-19 Pandemic and reassemble, Jimmy Edwards has stepped forward to lead the band as musical director. Jimmy was no stranger to BBT having subbed in on many occassions with the trombone section. We have really come to appreciate his ear for musical balance, his deep knowledge of big band repertoire, his nuanced approach to musical direction and his encouraging and positive energy to take BBT to the next level. Once upon a time, he was the inaugural musical director of the Royal City Big Band and now we are thrilled to have him behind the baton as well as the occasional trombone solo to front the band.

We are grateful for the leadership of Robin Habermehl (2011-2018), Robin Jessome (2018) and Sam Meakin (2019) who lead us through 2 recordings receiving national plays and many successful collaborations with Canadian jazz icons Don Thompson, John MacLeod, and Michael Occhipinti.

Meet the band

Band Members

Getting this 17-member group together for rehearsals and concerts is not an easy task.


Saxophone

gabriella ellingham

Gabriella Ellingham

alto, bari, clarinet, flute

ken-foster

Ken Foster

tenor saxophone

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Ken Hadley

alto sax, flute and clarinet

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Taylor Ellingham

Baritone sax

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Tim Moher

tenor sax


Trumpet

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Alan Ralston

trumpet

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Doug Stinson

trumpet

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Martin Lacoste

trumpet

trumpet

Paul Fedherau

trumpet

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Randy Brown

lead trumpet


Trombone

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Jim Edwards

musical director, trombone

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Kathryn Scobie

trombone

paul-ellingham

Paul Ellingham

Bass trombone

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Robin Jessome

trombone

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Sam Meakin

trombone

steve-hagedorn

Steve Hagedorn

trombone


Rhythm Section

Andy Mac

Andy Macpherson

Drums

Greg Prior

Greg Prior

Bass

jef daniels

Jeff Daniels

Piano

RalfKingpin

Ralf Buschmeyer

guitar


Friends of the band

Andriy-Tykhonov

Andriy Tykhonov

Piano, keyboard

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Bob Phillips

trombone

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Bruce Gordon

Composer & arranger

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Caleb Khuu

guitar

Chris-Alcantara

Chris Alcantara

Trumpet

dan brennan

Dan Brennan

bass

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Darrell Kuwabara

guitar

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David Cheon

guitar

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Dennis Rondeau

bass

Derek Hines

Derek Hines

vocalist

Don Thompson. Photo by Thomas Grandin

Don Thompson

vibes, writer and arranger

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Eric Probst

bass trombone

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Greg Dozois

trumpet

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Hepcat Swing

Dancers and Instructors

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John MacLeod

guest trumpet, arranger and writer

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Joni NehRita

vocalist

keith bilinsky

Keith Bilinsky

trombone

Kevin-Kalbfleisch

Kevin Kalbfleisch

trumpet

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Lukas Bouda

guitar

mary catherine

Mary Catherine McNinch-Pazzano

vocalist

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Matt Koebel

piano

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Michael Occhipinti

guitar, composer, arranger

randy lyghht

Randy Lyght

vocalist

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Rebecca Binnendyk

vocalist

rob-gellner

Rob Gellner

robin-habermehl

Robin Habermehl

Conductor, soprano, alto & tenor sax, vocals

ron-schirm

Ron Schirm

Trombone

ryan-cassidy

Ryan Cassidy

Tenor sax

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Shawn Robson

trumpet

Stephen-Zurakowsky

Stephen Zurakowsky

Guitar

steve mcdade

Steve McDade

trumpet

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Tim Louis

vocalist, piano

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Tyler Wagler

guitar

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Urmas Soomet

bass

Photos

Upcoming Shows

2022

Jun 12, 6:00 PM

BBT at Our World Festival

cost: free
Kitchener Market, Eby Street Garage  
Under Jimmy's Baton

Lawrence McNaught of the Registry Theatre is a great friend of the band.

After a couple of years of Covid Hyatus, Lawrence is back producing the “Our World Festival” in the garage of the Kitchener Market.

 

 

Jul 23, 8:00

BBT returns to the Sunlife Uptown Waterloo Jazz Festival: 2022

Waterloo City Hall  
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The Sunlife Uptown Waterloo Jazz Festival, 2022 is ON!

BBT is looking forward to performing predominantly Canadian arrangements and compositions for jazz orchestra at this show.

Photo by Jeannine Barkhouse.

Photo by Jeannine Barkhouse.

Sep 17

Bestival Welcomes BBT to Centre Stage

Bestival Logo

Bestival has pivoted beautifully these past couple of years, but this September it looks like business as usual! BBT is excited to join Tim Moher and the Team at Bestival to bring you wonderful live music in the lovely pedestrian atmosphere of Belmont Village.

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Nov 18, 8:00 PM

Grand River Jazz Society Presents BBT

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BBT will be blowin’ their horns in the Jazz Room with their powerful sound. Don’t worry, we’re working on a special “indoor sound” for you as we speak!

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photo credit: Gee Wong

Dec 17, 8:00

A Big Band Christmas

Registry Theatre  
living artfully registry theatre

We’re back at the Registry for another Christmas Show! 2022 was cancelled so we went Live Streamed! Hopefully this one will be in person and live! Can’t wait!

Details to come.

Dec 18, 3:00 PM

A Big Band Christmas

Registry Theatre  
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