The Big Band plays jazz standards and pop and Latin hits under the co-direction of Mark DeJong and Carsten Rubeling. Mark and Carsten are highly respected professional jazz musicians based in Calgary. The Big Band puts on community dances, offers a Jazzy Christmas and takes part in the Bow Valley Blow Out.

Big Band practices will be held at Canmore Collegiate High School on Wednesday evenings from 7:30 to 9:30 starting September 5.

Musicians are welcome to attend the first three practices and then decide if they want to join Valley Winds. Although there are no formal auditions, places are available depending on the need for specific instruments.

I joined the big band to broaden my musical scope, because I had only studied classical music on the flute. Fellow members helped me learn the sax (thanks!), and before long I was enjoying big band music, and even soloing once in a while. Big band has changed how I enjoy all kinds of music. An ever-welcoming group!

Cathy Harrop

Mark DeJong - Big Band Co-Music Director

Mark DeJong - Big Band Co-Music Director

Mark DeJong is active as a performer, educator, composer and bandleader. A graduate of the University of Calgary, he also holds a Masters in Jazz Studies from Rutgers University. He teaches jazz at Mt Royal University, directs the TD Jazz Intensive in Saskatoon, SK, and co-founded (with Carsten Rubeling) the JazzYYC Youth Lab Band.

He is a founding member of the New York-based group the Outer Bridge Ensemble, with whom he made his debut at the Blue Note (NY) in March of 2014. The Outer Bridge has opened for such luminaries as John Scofield, Christian McBride and Kenny Werner. Mark’s WCMA-nominated cd “The Unknown” garnered praise from around the globe. His recent recording “Where Everything is Music” features Juno-award pianist David Braid and renowned bassist and cellist Simon Fisk.

He has toured internationally including Europe, Japan, Cuba, and in 2010 was a featured soloist at World Expo in Shanghai, China. He has shared the stage with such international icons as Ray Charles, Lennie Pickett, Rob McConnell, Kenny Wheeler, Moe Koffman, David Braid, Hugh Fraser and Oliver Jones, as well as vocalists Nikki Yanofsky, Denzal Sinclaire and Carol Wellsman.

Carsten Rubeling - Big Band Co-Music Director

Carsten Rubeling - Big Band Co-Music Director

Carsten Rubeling presents extensive awards, recording, TV, radio and live performances credentials. With a Masters of Music in Jazz Performance from Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College, NY, and Bachelor of Music in Jazz Studies from Thompson Rivers University at Toronto’s Humber College, he has also taught at Mount Royal University and Humber College. Carsten teaches at Mount Royal University Summer Jazz Camp, the TD Jazz Intensive in Saskatoon, SK, and co-founded (with Mark DeJong) the JazzYYC Youth Lab Band in Calgary.

He has also performed with Outer Bridge Ensemble, opening for Christian McBride, and Rubim de Toledo Group, opening for Branford Marsalis. Carsten’s trombone prowess and lectures/workshops continue to be renowned throughout Canada, US and Germany.