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2023.2.28 John Yao Composer Spotlight


March 1, 2023

Event Type

Composer Spotlight

Erica Seguine

Event Type Description

Composer Spotlights feature a Presenting Artist outlining compositional concepts contained within their own work by examining score & audio excerpts.


Building Voicings Using Note Groups From A 12-Tone Row

About the Presenting Artists(s)

John Yao is a trombonist, composer and bandleader who has cemented his place on the New York City jazz scene. Yao has released five albums as a leader. In 2015, Yao released his triumphant big band album “Flip-Flop” by John Yao and His 17-piece Instrument. Recent albums by John Yao’s Triceratops, 2022’s Off-Kilter and 2019’s How We Do, featured a front-line of Yao, Billy Drewes, and John Irabagon. As a trombonist, Yao has worked extensively as a sideman for the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, and Arturo O’Farrill and the Afro-Latin Jazz Orchestra. and performed with esteemed musicians such as Paquito D’Rivera, Eddie Palmieri, Danilo Perez, Chris Potter and Kurt Elling. As a composer, Yao has been commissioned by Afro-Latin Jazz Orchestra, Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia, JMI Jazz World Orchestra, and Arsonore Spirit Orchestra among others. Yao serves as Assistant Professor of Trombone at Berklee College of Music, and Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College, and as Adjunct Professor of Music at Molloy University.

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