Gary Matsuura

Gary Matsuura's Biography

Gary Matsuura enjoys an active career as a composer, arranger, music educator and performer of saxophones, flutes and clarinets. Equally at home in jazz and classical idioms, his compositions and arrangements have been performed by professional orchestras, big bands and school ensembles. He has served as music director, arranger and lead woodwind with the Tokyo Disneyland Band and other professional productions.

As a performer, Mr. Matsuura was a featured soloist in a performance with Celine Dion and Rosie O'Donnell in the Celine Dion Christmas Special These Are Special Times on CBS. In addition, he has played back-up to such entertainers as Helen O'Connell, The Temptations and the Four Tops. His saxophone, flute and clarinet artistry can be heard on CD recordings of various artists such as Phillip Keveren, Art Davis, Jan Jordan, Debbi Ebert and Kathy Williams. He is the founder of CCA Jazz Quintet, a collaborative ensemble of composers and performers that are dedicated to creating new works for the idiom.

Mr. Matsuura has presented over 25 world premieres of various composers, including substantial works by the late Fred Katz (1919-2013).

A dedicated music educator, Mr. Matsuura has been teaching for over 34 years. For 22 years, he has been on faculty at the Hall-Musco Conservatory of Music at Chapman University, where he established the current curriculum for classical and jazz saxophone, jazz improvisation and woodwind pedagogy. He is also a frequent adjudicator and clinician at scholastic jazz festivals. His present and former students have honored him by winning many prestigious awards and scholarships and by working as professional musicians and music educators in the United States and Japan.

In addition to extensive private studies in late 18th counterpoint in the style of J.S. Bach from the late Allen Davis and private studies in jazz improvisation from jazz legend Phil Woods, Mr. Matsuura holds a Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Education from California State University, Fullerton and the Diploma in Composition and Arranging from the Dick Grove School of Music.

Mr. Matsuura is a Yamaha Performing Artist, playing exclusively Yamaha saxophones, flutes and clarinets.

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