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Jazz bandits

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Bill Hayes - Vibraphones  & Composer

Bill Hayes, percussionist/composer, studied drums with Alan Dawson, vibes with Gary Burton, timpani with Alexander Lepak, and holds a degree from the Hartt School.

Bill Has held 27 Broadway percussion chairs, subbed on over 60 more, and played on 17 cast albums, including The Prom, A Bronx Tale, and Jersey Boys. Bill has toured the world and recorded with Barbra Streisand, Liza Minnelli, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Audra McDonald, and Charles Aznavour. He has worked with Michel Legrand, Ray Charles, Kenny Rogers, Chita Rivera, Aretha Franklin, Jimmy Webb, Glenn Campbell, Marvin Hamlisch, Art Garfunkel, Rufus Wainwright, Korn and many others. He’s played on over 100 recordings in the show, jazz, classical, rock and movie soundtrack fields, and has appeared on TV shows on 4 continents.

Bill has played with many of New York’s freelance orchestras and has performed at chamber music festivals throughout the US and Europe.

He has performed in hundreds of concert halls, theaters, stadiums and nightclubs worldwide, including Carnegie Hall, the Paris Opera, La Scala, the Rio Opera House, the Hollywood Bowl, and the Athens Herodion.

Bill started the Jazz Bandits in the shutdown summer of 2020 and has been thrilled to keep a sliver of live music alive in midtown ever since.

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Rosa Avila - Drums

Rosa Avila was born in Bad Godesberg, Germany and spent her childhood in Mexico and Vienna Austria. She began playing drums at age 16 and has studied at Facultad de Musica de la Universidad de Veracruz in Xalapa, Veracruz and Escuela Superior de Musica in Mexico City.

She was later granted a scholarship from the Mexican Endowment of the Arts for completion of her training at Musicians Institute in Los Angeles, California where she studied with such notables as Joe Porcaro ,Casey Scheuerrell, Ralph Humphrey, and Taka Numazawa. Upon graduation in 1991, Rosa was presented with the award of Outstanding Student of the Year and also received the Human Relations Award , first time a student won both in the same year . She has performed with artists such as The Lennon Sisters, Ann Margret, Glen Campbell, Debby Boone, Elkie Brooks, Petula Clark. In 1992, she began her association with Andy Williams with whom she performed with until 2009. Plays drums in the all women jazz group Sheroes with band leader Monika Herzig , plays drums with Dawn Drake’s Zapote . In 2018 had the pleasure of having the drum chair at Summer The Donna Summer Musical on Broadway.

Had the drum chair in four amazing Off broadway shows during 2019, Chick Flick, Broadway Bounty Hunter, Love in Hate Nation, and For Colored Girls at the public theater.

Endorsements: Zildjian cymbals, Pearl Drums,Evans Drumheads, Vic Firth Sticks

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Chip Jackson - Bass

Chip Jackson, bassist, has spent many years as a fixture in the jazz world. He spent 5 years touring with Elvin Jones, followed by 15 years with Dr. Billy Taylor. He appears regularly in jazz concerts (six times at Carnegie Hall), at festivals around the world, and has played on more than 60 CDs with jazz greats such as Thad Jones, Red Rodney, Stan Getz, Wynton Marsalis, Horace Silver, Tony Bennett, Freddy Hubbard, and Joe Henderson. He has been praised by critics for his “big melodious tone” and “exquisite intonation with a flowing time sense,” and for his solos that are “models of inventiveness.”

In 1999 he released his first CD as leader, “Is There A Jackson In the House?”. He has written and arranged for his own groups, and has been active as a private teacher and a clinician.

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John Samorian, Piano

John has performed in over 20 Broadway productions and international tours, including most recently: A Bronx Tale, Motown the Musical, Jersey Boys, and The Book Of Mormon. He has a Masters Degree in Jazz Education and has also performed solo, in many small and large ensembles, and toured with Blood, Sweat, and Tears.

CD Out on a Limb on Itunes

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Colin Taber - Guitar

Colin Taber (guitar) studied at Temple U and has tried to make the world a better place through music for the 30+ years since. Numerous gigs on cruise ships, in catering halls, pits and even the Staten Island Ferry. Playing with Bill Hayes and the Jazz Bandits has been one of the only good things to come out of the

pandemic; looking forward to the city coming back to life!

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Milton Granger - Composer

Composer/librettist: nine chamber operas and several musical plays, with productions throughout the U.S. and Canada.

Pianist/conductor: five Broadway shows, four national tours, over 100 regional productions


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Kristina Gitterman-Musser, Violin

Violinist, Kristina Gitterman is thrilled to be playing w BCP tonight.

She has played in over 30 musicals and will be performing in the upcoming Sondheim revival of “Company” at the Jacobs theater.

She performs in NYC with many orchestras and ensembles including Mostly Mozart at Lincoln Center, The New York Pops, American Ballet Theater, Encores at City Center and the Little Orchestra.

During the Pandemic, Kristina found many ways to play music for the community.  She performed duos, trios and quartets; playing in hospitals, assisted living facilities, the Javits Center, the lobbies of many NYC buildings, and even the hallways of her own building for her music-loving neighbors.  She also organized a string orchestra concert, MOB (Members Of Broadway) in Tompkins Square Park ( funded by MPTF and Gitterman Gallery).

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Tom Jennings, Piano

Pianist and composer Tom Jennings has performed, recorded, and arranged music in a wide array of genres. Hailed by the Boston Globe as a "highly attuned pianist," Tom has accompanied opera luminaries Ben Heppner, Jerome Hines, and Mark Delavan, and cabaret stars Steve Ross, Leslie Uggams, and Karen Akers. He has appeared on numerous recordings by jazz and pop artists, including DeShannon Higa, Terry Silverlight, Gary Haase, Steve Sacks, and Emily Drennan. Tom's most recent releases include Sunday Jazz, Vol. 1: Quiet Time (2021), a collection of meditative jazz hymn arrangements, and Viewed from Above (2020), a collection of compositions for string quartet and soloist featuring soprano Michelle Jennings.


Tom holds a Doctor of Musical Arts from Manhattan School of Music, where he studied with Constance Keene. Prior to that Tom studied with Landon Bilyeu and Ellis Marsalis at Virginia Commonwealth University, and Milton Granger, whose music he is honored to be playing this evening. 

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Anik Oulianine, Cello

Anik Oulianine is a freelance cellist living and working in New York City. She performs regularly with several orchestras, including the New York City Ballet, American Ballet Theater and the American Symphony Orchestra, with which she has also participated in the Summerscape Opera and Bard Music Festival in Annandale-on-Hudson.

She is very active in the musical theater world, performing in the Tony award-winning Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, and such productions as Mary Poppins, The Lion King, West Side Story, Grey Gardens, Wicked and Aladdin to name a few. She has also performed with the Encores! and Encores! Off-Center series at City Center, and the Pit-Stop Players, a group of top Broadway musicians playing an eclectic assortment of classical and original works, many composed by the performers themselves.

Anik is thrilled to be performing live again with her colleagues.

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Alexandra Cook, Horn

Alexandra Cook has been playing horn in the New York metropolitan area for the past thirty years. She started her career as a chamber musician playing with the award-winning woodwind quintet Vox Nova. Alexandra has performed with Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, New York City Opera, Brooklyn Philharmonic, American Composers Orchestra, and Riverside Symphony, and has held positions with the Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic, New Haven Symphony, and Orchestra of New England. Miss Cook has also played numerous Broadway shows including GypsySecret GardenThe Who’s TommyKing and I, and Titanic. She is currently a member of the Lion King Orchestra.

As a student studying horn and performance practice at SUNY Purchase, Miss Cook pursued her interest in original instruments thanks to the encouragement of her mentors Steven Lubin, Robert D. Levin, and Anthony Newman. As a result she has been an active member of the original instrument movement from the beginning of her career. On period instruments, Alexandra has performed and recorded with many early music ensembles: American Classical Orchestra, Philharmonia Baroque, Smithsonian Chamber Music Society, Amor Artis, Apollo Ensemble, Concert Royal, REBEL Baroque Orchestra, Trinity Baroque Orchestra, New York Collegium, and the American Bach Soloists.

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Funda Cizmecioglu, Violin

Funda Cizmecioglu performs across a broad musical spectrum and maintains extensive collaborations in the classical and interdisciplinary experimental music scenes in New York City. Funda frequently performs in both pop-up style non-traditional concert venues and renowned traditional concert halls such as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and the Feldstein Immersion Room at the Avery Fisher Center for Music and Media. Recent projects involving 2019 USA premier of Hafliði Hallgrímsson‘s 7 Epigrams for violin and cello and 2021 World premier of Magnus Martensson’s Mar Del for violin and piano. She currently holds the position of Principal Second Violin of the Albany Symphony Orchestra, Assistant Concertmaster position of Mid America Productions Carnegie Hall series, Principal Second Violin of the St. Cecilia Choir of New York, and Ocean City Pops.

Crossing over into the rock and pop world, she has toured with Pink Martini, Peter Gabriel, Gloria Gaynor, Kishi Bashi, Frank Sinatra Jr., Johnny Mathis, and Kanye West. Funda holds a Master of Music degree and a Professional Studies Diploma in Violin Performance from Mannes College of The New School University in New York City. She earned her Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance from the State Conservatory of Mimar Sinan University in Istanbul, Turkey and a Performance Diploma from the International Academy at Mozarteum University in Salzburg, Austria. Funda is an avid swimmer, managing to fit miles of swimming into her everyday routine.

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Vladimir Valjarevic, Piano

The critics have praised pianist Vladimir Valjarevic for his “caressing legato,” “silk-on-velvet seductiveness” (Fanfare Magazine), “beautiful lyricism and . . . wide variety of tones and colorings, perceptively applied with care” (All Music Guide). He has also been called “an outstandingly responsive partner and superb tonalist” (The Strad). His performances have taken him throughout America, Europe, and Asia, and have garnered enthusiastic critical acclaim. Valjarevic has collaborated with numerous contemporary composers in various projects, including commissions, recordings, and world premiers. He has recorded for Labor Records, Romeo Records, Centaur Records, Blue Griffin, and MSR Classics.

Valjarevic studied in his native Bosnia, at Belgrade Conservatory (Serbia), Mannes School of Music (BM & MM), Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University (DMA) and at Geneva Conservatory in Switzerland, where he was a Fulbright Scholar. His primary piano instructors are Pavlina Dokovska, Pascal Devoyon, Susan Starr, and Planinka Jurisic-Atic. Valjarevic is on piano faculty at Mannes School of Music (College, Prep) and Mason Gross School of the Arts, and teaches piano pedagogy and literature at Mannes. His festival affiliations include Beijing International Music Festival and Academy, and Xi'An Music Festival in China, Round Top in Texas, IIYM in Kansas, IKIF in New York.

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Tereasa Payne, Bass Flute

Fierce. Tenacious. Adventurous. Fearless. These are words that are often used to describe Tereasa Payne. After starting her career as an orchestral flutist, Tereasa added clarinet and saxophone to her arsenal because she wanted an additional challenge. Loving the new opportunities that these additional instruments opened up to her, she began to seek out new worlds through flutes and to boldy go where no career has gone before.


Tereasa has soloed with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, appeared as panflute soloist on “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon” (with Kygo), been seen playing ocarina on the Gaslight stage in The Marvelous Mrs Maisel, and performs regularly on Broadway with shows including Disney’s The Lion King, where she plays 14 different flutes from around the world. Tereasa has collaborated with many legendary artists from Sir James Galway to The Temptations to Bernadette Peters, and has performed with orchestras throughout the U.S. and abroad.


A world flutes consultant for many esteemed Broadway orchestrators, Tereasa most recently worked on the scores of new musicals with Stephen Schwartz & August Eriksmoen (Prince of Egypt), Chris Jahnke & Scott Wasserman (Other World) and Jim Abbott (Disney’s When you Wish.), and on the upcoming animated Mel Brooks movie, Blazing Samurai. She has also recorded extensively on world flutes, and she is dedicated to sharing her “Flutes of the World” concert with others from concert halls to hospice homes to educational centers and beyond.


Passionate about sharing her knowledge of music with others, Tereasa is currently on faculty at the Bloomingdale School of Music in NYC.  She was formerly Instructor of Flute at Daytona State University (FL) and Bethune-Cookman University (FL). She also maintains a roster of talented and enthusiastic students of all ages, both at her home teaching studio and via online lessons with students throughout the world.

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Martha Hyde - Woodwinds

Martha Hyde is a veteran of over 60 Broadway productions both as a substitute and as a regular. She can also be seen in the pit for the Radio City Christmas Spectacular, she has played in numerous Off-Broadway and regional productions and she has recorded several cast albums. In concert she has appeared with such luminaries as Sandy Duncan, Kathleen Turner, Andre de Shields, Kenny Loggins, Carmen McRae and Dizzy Gillespie. Before becoming involved in musical theater, Martha performed with local rock, Latin and Haitian dance bands, finding herself in venues as varied as St. John the Divine, CBGB and the Brooklyn Bridge Anchorage as well as tours on four continents.

Martha maintains an active studio of private woodwind students and also teaches woodwinds at Léman Preparatory School. As a composer, she writes for her students as well as for her own ensembles and the New River Ensemble, of which she is a founding member. She has a library of original music for young jazz bands and wind ensembles as well as a trove of original music that straddles the rural and urban cultures she’s lived in.

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Lynette Wardle, Harp

An orchestra harpist, chamber musician, recording artist, and soloist, Lynette Wardle enjoys a varied and rewarding performance career.  She has been recognized for her “refined tone production and spot-on rhythmic sense.”  In addition to being the principal harpist of both the Richmond Symphony and the Albany Symphony, she performs regularly with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra and the New York City Chamber Orchestra. 

Lynette can be heard on Grammy Award-winning Albany Symphony recordings, and Original Cast Albums for Amélie, the Musical, Renascence, The Beast in the Jungle, and The Mad Ones.  For the holiday seasons, she has been in the orchestra for A Christmas Story, the Musical, and the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. When Broadway returns she will be in the orchestra for the new musical Flying Over Sunset at Lincoln Center Theatre.  Lynette is an integral part of Sax-O-Philm, Sounds and Sights of the 20’s, a multi-media concert production created by virtuoso saxophone player, Chad Smith. 

She has shared the stage and studio with Megan Hilty, David Burnham, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Johnny Mathis, Marvin Hamlisch, Edgar Meyer, Yo-Yo Ma, Gil Shaham, Joshua Bell, Deborah Voigt, and Pavarotti.  Ms. Wardle holds a Masters in Orchestral Performance from Manhattan School of Music.  

Chad Smith, Alto Saxophone

Chad Smith has spent the last 25 years performing in prestigious orchestras, Broadway shows and recording sessions.  Enjoying a bicoastal career in New York and Los Angeles, Chad has appeared with the Metropolitan Opera, Philadelphia Orchestra and Los Angeles Philharmonic as a saxophonist.  He has recorded for major motion pictures such as Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Secret Life of Pets 2, West Side Story and the television shows, Family Guy and American Dad as a bassoon doubler. 


Chad specializes in the music of 1920’s virtuoso, Rudy Wiedoeft through a multimedia presentation entitled Sax-O-Philm: Sounds and Sights of the 20’s.  Chad is also an accomplished composer and has written works for saxophone, bassoon, wind quartets, chamber and symphonic ensembles.  Mr. Smith is an adjunct professor of saxophone and oversees the Master’s in Woodwind Doubling program at Montclair State University. 


For more information on Chad, please visit  &

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Gabriela Rengel, Violin

Gabriela Rengel is a Venezuelan/American violinist and violist. She is a tenured member of the Albany Symphony Orchestra, in addition to performing with the Hudson Valley Symphony, New Jersey Festival Orchestra, Plainfield Symphony, and the Oratorio Society of Queens. She enjoys playing a variety of genres, always dedicated to playing with groups that bring attention to the repertoire of Latin composers, such as the Association of Dominican Classical Artists, the Multicultural Music Group, and the Música de Cámara Organization. 


Gabriela also performs on Broadway, most recently on the shows Tootsie and Ain’t Too Proud. Gabriela is passionate about chamber music and has been a member of the Madison String Quartet, as well as continues to collaborate regularly as a guest artist with the Sweet Plantain String Quartet. What remaining time Gabriela has she spends these days home schooling her adorable 6-year old twins.

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Eddie Venegas, Violin

Eddie Venegas was born in Caracas, Venezuela where he began learning to play violin as a child. He moved to New York City to study with Daniel Phillips of the Orion String Quartet at The Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College, where he obtained his Bachelors and Masters degrees in Performance of Classical Violin. Venegas is a self-taught trombonist.

Venegas has been a regular member of Marc Anthony’s band as a trombonist and violinist from 2010-2016. Venegas also plays with the legendary Orquesta Broadway and Grupo Folklorico Experimental Nuevayorquino also doubling on violin and trombone. 

Venegas has performed alongside world famous opera star, Susan Graham, and with The Harrisburg Symphony, The Queens Philharmonic, The Sphinx Symphony, Saint Martins of Tours Symphony Orchestra, and The Carpentier String Quartet. Currently working as a regular violinist at the Broadway Show Ain’t Too Proud. He is a founding member of the Sweet Plantain String Quartet and the salsa band Los Hacheros.

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Rachel Handman, Violin

Originally from Hyde Park, NY, violinist Rachel Handman's virtuosity and improvisational ability appears in many musical forms, including classical, bluegrass, Irish, pop and folk.

Broadway show credits include Dr. ZhivagoSomething Rotten!, Miss Saigon, and Carousel, among others. Rachel is a a long standing member of the Hudson Valley Philharmonic and is Associate Concert Master of the Ridgefield Symphony Orchestra. With recent and upcoming performances at Carnegie Hall, she also plays in the New York Oratorio Society Orchestra under the direction of Kent Tritle. She has toured Mexico with Philharmonic Orchestra of the Americas, and Germany, both on stage and in the orchestra with the shows My Fair Lady and On The Town.


Loving travel and exposure to other cultures, Rachel lived in La Paz, Bolivia where she was in the National Symphony of Bolivia, concertized with a string quartet, and eventually joined a Salsa band named Guapacha! After returning to the states, Rachel began fiddling and immersing herself in different folk and fiddle styles. With her band, Uncommon Ground, she has performed at many festivals including the Doc Watson Festival, Carolina in the Fall, and Winter-Hawk festival.

Rachel has also performed with Natalie Merchant, Norm Lewis, Jennifer Hudson, Roberta Flack, Bette Midler, and the legendary Ray Charles. She teaches fiddle workshops at Summer Strings, a music camp run by her family in Poughkeepsie, NY, and is a resident visiting artist at Music at Port Milford chamber music festival in Milford, Ontario. 

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New View Saxophone Quartet

The NEW VIEW SAXOPHONE QUARTET came together to rehearse new works by its members and existing works, of both jazz and “classical” nature. The four members are all versatile veteran professional saxophonists (and accomplished doublers) who for many years have performed and recorded with one another in New York City big bands, Broadway shows, jazz groups and other ensembles.


During the first months of the Covid pandemic, when performance opportunities for New York City musicians were scarce at best, and even getting together to rehearse in any ordinary venue would have been risky, the quartet began scheduling regular rehearsals – outside, in Marc Phaneuf’s back yard. They began to find repertoire that they felt expresses their common musical taste and language, much of it original compositions and arrangements by the quartet’s own members. They found ways to integrate their respective jazz backgrounds into the quartet’s sound, while working through classical masterworks and jazz-oriented pieces by friends and colleagues. They worked toward an ensemble concept and sound that they feel is unique in the saxophone quartet world. Eventually they began live-streaming their music from their outside rehearsal area.

Marc Phaneuf, soprano and alto saxophone, composed today’s piece, “The Three Intruders”. Marc is also the arranger of a large portion of the quartet’s original repertoire. Marc performs with the Boston Symphony and the Boston Pops, and has been a regular member of many Broadway orchestras, including most recently Cats and Tootsie.

Jay Brandford, alto saxophone, is one of the few musicians who has been a regular member of both the Count Basie and Duke Ellington orchestras. Also an accomplished composer and arranger, Jay has also been a member of numerous Broadway orchestras, including most recently Hello Dolly and Beetlejuice.


Mark Lopeman, tenor saxophone, has toured, recorded with, and composed and arranged music for big bands including those of Buddy Rich, Woody Herman, Mel Lewis and Toshiko Akiyoshi. A long-time member of Vince Giordano’s Nighthawks, Mark was a regular member of the orchestra for the 2018 production of Carousel.

Carl Maraghi, baritone saxophone, moved to New York from his native Montreal, Canada to earn an Artist Diploma from the Juilliard School. Carl has performed with the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra and now is a regular member some of the most cutting-edge large jazz ensembles in the New York City area, including those led by Christian McBride and Darcy James Argue.

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