François Théberge
LEADER
SIDEMAN
BIOGRAPHY

Saxophonist, composer and arranger François Théberge was born in Montreal in 1963. Between 1980 and 1985, while an active member of the Montreal jazz scene, he studied jazz at McGill and Concordia University. In 1985 he received a grant from the Canada Arts Council to continue his studies at the Eastman School of Music (USA). While living in the United States from 1985 to 1990, he was able to continue both his studies and to integrate the American jazz scene. He studied with Bill Dobbins and Ray Wright at Eastman, becoming assistant professor of improvisation, and obtained his Masters of Music in 1989. During his stay at the University of Miami in 1987, he studied with Gary Campbell and Ron Miller. He was hired by the Glen Miller Orchestra of New York as saxophonist and arranger, playing with the band on a fourteen month long world tour (1986 - 1987). In 1990, he was hired by the Orchestre Régional Rhône-Alpes and settled in France. In 1991, he moved to Paris and became involved in teaching, playing and arranging. The artistic emulation of the Paris jazz scene led him to come into contact with musicians from around the world; he took part in numerous projects, festivals, studio recordings and tours throughout Europe. In 1995, he was hired to teach jazz arranging and composition at the National Conservatory of Music in Paris and was appointed full professor in 1999. In 1997, his first album, Asteur, was nominated for best jazz album of the year and was nominated into the most promising artist category at the Djangos d'Or of 1998. He was appointed director/composer of the European Youth Jazz Orchestra of 1999. In September 1999, he founded the new label Round Records, and a year later replaced François Jeanneau as head of the jazz department of the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris. Since early 2002, his collaboration with Lee Konitz; ("Music of Konitz" on Effendi Records), has been attracting a lot of attention in the press and festivals in Europe and in north America. His new release "Elenar" also on Effendi Record is now getting some great reviews --- "Choc" in the magazine Jazzman (France) - December 2003.

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