The Seattle Repertory Jazz Orchestra (SRJO) is an award-winning, 17-piece big band comprised of many of the region's leading jazz soloists and band leaders. The SRJO is the Northwest's only permanent ensemble dedicated to the accurate and historically observant performance of the great works of big band jazz. Drummer Clarence Acox nationally recognized former director of bands at Seattle's Garfield High School, and saxophonist/arranger Michael Brockman, a long-time faculty member at the University of Washington School of Music, founded the SRJO in 1995. As early as 1988, however, many of the players had assembled for a now-annual concert of the Sacred Music of Duke Ellington, presented by Seattle's Earshot Jazz Society. A 1992 "Evening of Ellington" program, presented by Brockman at the University of Washington's Meany Theater, brought together players not normally included in the sacred concerts and featured new transcriptions by Brockman of classic Ellingtonia.
THE BAND- Saxophones / Reeds
Michael Brockman (Artistic Director, lead alto saxophonist) has been a faculty member of the UW School of Music since 1987, instructing saxophone performance and jazz arranging. He studied saxophone and composition at the New England Conservatory, the Berklee College of Music and the Musikhochschule at the University of Cologne. He has recorded with groups in Washington D.C. and Boston, and in Seattle with the Seattle Symphony Orchestra and the Clarence Acox Sextet. Brockman was presented the Champion of the Arts Award from the Kirkland Performance Center. He is director of the UW’s highly regarded “Jazz in Paris” program.
Alex Dugdale (saxophone) is a graduate of Roosevelt High School and holds a B.A. in Jazz from the Eastman School of Music and a Master's Degree in Education from Seattle Pacific University. He first performed with SRJO in 2006 in the Duke Ellington Sacred Music Concert and looks forward to this concert every year. Alex is SRJO's Director of Education and leads SRJO's Clarence Acox Jazz Scholar's program. He also instructs in the music department of Bishop Blanchet High School and teaches band at six different Catholic grade schools in the Seattle area. He works as a private instructor with Edmonds-Woodway High School bands and continues to perform in the greater Seattle area with his group FADE.
After graduating from high school, Sidney Hauser auditioned and was accepted into the jazz program at the University of Washington. Although she took lessons with famous musicians such as Cuong Vu, Ted Poor, Bill Frisell, and Marc Seales (who was her mentor at the time), Sidney took time away in an effort to find her jazz voice while continuing to exercise her artistry and was accepted into the University of Washington School of fine and visual arts. During this time Sidney continued to perform jazz in various venues in Seattle including performing with Seattle Women's Jazz Orchestra. In addition, Sidney spearheaded a band at this time which has now morphed into her current band SmackTalk often described as performing jazz-funk fusion.
Travis Ranney (tenor saxophone) is a Seattle-based saxophonist with a stylistic emphasis on bop and swing jazz. He has been performing and touring since 1990 and has played with many jazz greats as well as with top local bands. His work includes performances with John Pizzarelli, Doc Severinsen, the Ramsay/Kleeb Orchestra with Pete Christlieb, and he toured in the Northwest region with the Duke Ellington Orchestra (under the direction of Paul Ellington). He has also been featured many times in the Port Townsend Jazz Festival Big Band.
Mark Taylor (alto/tenor saxophone) is a prominent voice in the Seattle jazz community both on the stage, and in our schools. In addition to being a versatile and much sought after sideman in numerous creative groups and projects, Mark can be heard regularly with two critically acclaimed groups he co-leads: LineUp! (with pianist/vocalist Dawn Clement), and Human Spirit (with longtime friends and musical partners Thomas Marriott, and Matt Jorgensen). Among his achievements, Mark has been honored by Earshot Jazz as “2008 NW Instrumentalist of the Year,” and for “2009 Jazz Recording of the Year” for his second quartet release: Spectre (Origin Records). An active educator, Mark works extensively as a private teacher, ensemble coach, festival clinician/guest artist, and recently joined the faculty at Cornish College of the Arts. He holds a B.M. from the UW School of Music and M.M. from Manhattan School of Music.