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SBA Prairielands Jazz Camp, 2020

July 5-12, 2020, at the University of Regina (Riddell Centre)

The Saskatchewan Band Association is proud to include the well-respected Prairielands Jazz Camp to its summer Band Camp line-up!  Prairielands Jazz Camp is a unique opportunity for developing jazz musicians.  The camp brings together some of the best jazz performers and educators in Canada to provide young musicians a week of intensive jazz training.

Jazz Camp Activities

The Prairielands Jazz Camp is great for all ability levels and prior jazz experience is not necessary. Activities at camp are designed for different levels of playing ability so each participant can feel comfortable, yet challenged. The camp is open to students from grade 7 to 12.

Camp participants have the opportunity to study intensively with other youth of similar interests from across the province.  The camp utilizes a variety of formats to maximize learning while at all times remaining focused on each participant’s personal musical skill development.    

    Jazz camp activities include:

      • Improvisation and jazz theory
      • Big band rehearsals and sectionals
      • Combo experience for all participants
      • Instrument master classes each morning
      • 2 half-hour private lessons
      • Guided listening sessions
      • Student big band concert
      • Student combo concert
      • Staff big band concert
      • Staff combo concerts

    How to Register for Jazz Camp

    There are 2 key steps to register for Band Camp:

      1. Create (or Log-in if you have an account) your free Band Camp Family Account
      2.  Select Prairielands Jazz Camp from the band camp details page and follow the prompts to complete the registration process.

    Please Note:   Your Band Camp Family Account will link any child you register directly to your account, streamlining the registration process and giving you direct access to update your contact information, view past payments and more.  If you are registering for the first time - welcome!  Once you set up your Family Band Camp Account you will receive a confirmation email with your user name and a temporary password.  From there you can log in and change your password if you wish.

    Please Note: Jazz Camp requires a unique mix of instruments to form a band.  In addition to woodwind and brass instruments we require a LIMITED number of registrants for specific instruments: piano, percussion, guitar and bass.  The registration system has been designed for you to specifically select/register for your instrument. 

    If you have questions about the Band Camp Registration process you can reach us at 

    Jazz Camp Faculty

    The Prairielands Jazz Camp offers a host of nationally-acclaimed clinicians, many of whom are originally from Saskatchewan and still have strong roots in the province. Our faculty for 2020 includes:

    KEVIN WILLMS - Calgary, AB - big band and alto sax

    Kevin Willms was born and raised in Calgary. In June of 2018, he “graduated” after teaching instrumental and choral music for the Calgary Board of Education last 31 years. During this time, Aberhart High School.  His ensembles consistently performed at “Superior” levels and have received much recognition for their outstanding performances at local and international music festivals. His ensembles commissioned several new works for wind band and jazz ensemble and performed across Canada and the USA as well as in Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, the Czech Republic, Spain, China and Cuba.

    Mr. Willms has been the Artistic Director of the Westwinds Music Society for 22 years.  Westwinds is an adult community music organization dedicated to providing exceptional music education to adults of all levels of experience.

    The Calgary Association for the Development of Music Education, recognized internationally as CADME was formed in 2003 with Mr. Willms as its founding President. He continues to serve in this role. CADME is a not-for-profit charity born from the vision of dedicated music educators committed to enhancing and expanding music education for all students in the Calgary region.

    Mr. Willms is active as a clinician, guest conductor and adjudicator. He has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the “Elkhorn Award” from the Alberta Band Association, “David Peterkin Memorial Award” from Phi Beta Mu, Pan Canadian Students Choice Award, Excellence in Teaching Award and the Tommy Banks Award, recognizing his long-term contribution to music education in Alberta. He was named “Educator of the Year” by the Calgary Educational Partnership Foundation. In December, 2017, Mr. Willms was inducted as Laureate to the John Philip Sousa Legion of Honour

    Mentorship and contributing to the broader development of music education has always been an important priority.  Mr. Willms is very proud to be a Senior Advisor with “Music Mentors International”. This unique organization specializes in providing music educators with intensive workshops in rehearsal techniques as well as pedagogical concepts designed to assist teachers in building the best ensembles and musical communities possible.

    CHERYL FERGUSON - Winnipeg, MB - big band

    Cheryl Ferguson received a Bachelor of Arts in Music Performance (French horn) and a Bachelor of Science in Music Education from the University of Mary (Bismarck, ND).  She has also done graduate work at Southern Oregon University, and has earned a Master in Curriculum Studies (Music Education) at Acadia University (Nova Scotia). 

    Cheryl has taught music at every level, including K-6 general music classes, nine years running junior high band programs, and has been in her current position as Director of Bands at Fort Richmond Collegiate since 2006. 

    Cheryl has completed the Canadian Wind Conductor’s Development Program Levels I and II.  She is active as a clinician, adjudicator and guest conductor, including conducting the 2010 Manitoba Junior Provincial Honour Band,  the 2017 Manitoba Intermediate Honour Band, many regional Honour Bands across the Prairies.  She has adjudicated at festivals across the Prairie Provinces and in North Dakota (including the Manitoba Band Association Level One Festival).  She has also worked as a guest conductor and adjudicator in the Regina Catholic School system.

    The Fort Richmond Collegiate band program, under Cheryl's direction, was awarded the Don Green Award at the 2011 Optimist Band Festival in Winnipeg.

    In 2013, Cheryl received the Manitoba Band Association Award of Distinction recognizing an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to music education in Manitoba.  In 2014, she received the I. Keith Mann Outstanding Band Director Award, national recognition given to one band director in Canada per year.

    Cheryl serves as French horn instructor at Canadian Mennonite University.

    Cheryl continues to perform with the Winnipeg Wind Ensemble and the Cambridge Brass Quintet. She is also the conductor of the Westwood Community Band and has conducted the Adult Advanced Band at International Music Camp for several years. 

    In 2016, Cheryl was invited to record a TED Talk on Motivating People toward Excellence.   The talk is available on YouTube and in the link below:

    NICK FANNER - Saskatoon, SK - big band

    Nick Fanner taught for 31 years with the Saskatoon Public School Division. He believes in kids and music, both of which have sustained him through the magic carpet ride so far. He has directed bands at many SBA summer band camps over the years and has been on the staff of the Prairielands Jazz Camp for the vast majority of summers since 2002. As a sessional lecturer at the U of S, he has taught courses in Jazz Pedagogy and Jazz History. He enjoys playing the trumpet with the Saskatoon Jazz Orchestra and directing the Saskatoon Youth Jazz Orchestra as well as an adult beginner jazz band with the Saskatoon Community Bands organization.

    TRENT RESCHNY - Regina, SK - tenor sax 

    Trent Reschny is a graduate of both the U of R's Music Education and the University of Toronto’s Jazz program.  He’s played locally with Jack Semple, the Regina and Saskatoon Jazz Orchestras, the RSO and across Canada with the Paul Read OrchestraThe Toronto Jazz OrchestraThe Galaxy All StarsJully BlackMatt DuskKardinal OffishalShadLuke McMasterValery Gore, and with visiting artists The TemptationsThe SNL All StarsDon RicklesDukes of HazzardBob Newhart and more.  While in ON Trent also played 2 seasons with the Garden Bros Circus, on 5 cruise ships, 40 theatre productions and with his wife Alicia contracted ~1000 weddings and corporate events.  They moved back to Regina in 2016 to be closer to family and have been very blessed in their transition.  Trent also shares his passion for music teaching saxophone at the Regina Conservatory, and through his volunteer work with Regina Community Radio (hosting Alone Together, a jazz radio show on 91.3FM CJTR Thursday's 4-6pm), the Regina Jazz Society, and with his church.

    JON McCASLIN - Calgary, AB - Drums

    Recognized as one of Western Canada’s leading jazz drummers and educators, Jon McCaslin brings excitement and his passion for the jazz tradition and its future to the bandstand and to the classroom.

    Raised in Regina, Saskatchewan Jon began playing the drums at the age of nine while progressing through the Regina Lions Junior Band and award winning music program at his high school, Campbell Collegiate, soon developing a passion for playing the drums and jazz.

    Ultimately, Jon's interest in music led him to enroll in the Jazz Studies program at McGill University, graduating with distinction in 1999. While at McGill, Jon had the opportunity to study with some of the finest jazz educators in the country including Gordon Foote, Kevin Dean, Jan Jarcyzk, Joe Sullivan, Remi Bolduc, Chris McCann, Andre White, Michel Lambert and Dave Laing.

    He attended the Banff Centre for the Arts in 1997, where he performed with Canadian jazz greats Hugh Fraser, Don Thompson and Kenny Wheeler. In the spring of 2002 McCaslin completed his Master's in Jazz Studies at McGill University where he studied jazz drumming, improvisation and composition.

    In 2012 he released his album “Sunalta” on the Cellar Live jazz record label featuring Brad Turner, Phil Dwyer, Tilden Webb and Jodi Proznick. This music was nominated in 2013 for the Western Canadian Music Awards in the “Best Jazz Recording” category. As a busy sideman he has also performed with such internationally recognized artists as Mulgrew Miller, Peter Bernstein, Ralph Bowen, Hendrik Meurkens, Sean Jones, PJ Perry, Charlie Biddle, Hadley Caliman, Kelly Jefferson, Ian McDougall,  Jeff Johnston, Lorraine Desmerais, Steve Amirault, Hugh Fraser, Chucho Valdes, Uri Caine, Peter Apfelbaum, Wycliffe Gordon, Linda Oh and Pat LaBarbera. McCaslin is a Doctoral Candidate through the University of Toronto and is completing his dissertation on the conceptualization of contemporary melodic jazz drumming.

    Since 2009 he has authored “Four on the Floor”, one of the world’s most recognized on-line jazz drumming blogs. He is currently based in Calgary where he maintains a busy performing and teaching schedule across Canada.

    Donny Kennedy - Montreal, QC - Saxophone

    Originally from Regina, Donny Kennedy moved to Montreal to pursue a jazz performance degree at McGill University.  Donny received his Masters of Music in Jazz Performance degree in April of 2001.  At McGill, he has taught Basic Jazz Arranging, Jazz Saxophone, Jazz Materials, Basic Materials of Jazz, Jazz Orchestra III, and Jazz Combo.  Kennedy has also taught Saxophone at Bishop’s University and directed the Jazz Ensemble at Camp Musicale d’Asbestos (English session). As a musician, Donny leads and composes for his own Sextet.  In 2001 the group was chosen as one of five groups to perform in Toronto as part of a Canada Council initiative to promote emerging Canadian jazz artists and it was nominated for the GM Grand Prix de Jazz at the Montreal International Jazz Festival in 2003.    Donny remains active as a freelance musician and teacher in and around Montreal and plays lead alto saxophone in both the Joe Sullivan Big Band and the Juno award winning Christine Jensen Jazz Orchestra.

    Jeff McLeod - Toronto, ON - Piano

    Jeff McLeod is a pianist and organist originally from Regina, Saskatchewan, fresh on the Toronto music scene after living for 6 years in Rochester, New York. Since settling in Toronto, he has played with many of the city’s great musicians including Andrew Scott, Alex Dean, Ted Quinlan, Chris Gale, Ryan Oliver, Morgan Childs, Nathan Hiltz, Joel Haynes.

    Jeff spent more than a decade as an integral part of the Western Canadian music scene, performing with the soul/R&B bands Stepchyle and House of Payne (both featuring vocalist/ guitarist George Taylor), roots musician Joel Fafard, guitar wizard Jack Sample and many other great musicians including Kris Craig, Dan Silljer, Ed Lewis, Carlo Petrovitch, Mike Thompson, Dean McNeill, Mark DeJong, Trent Reschny, and Peter Dyksman. Jeff also spent time playing in the backing band for well-known Canadian vocalist, Serena Ryder, including appearances at major music festivals Lollapalooza and Bonnaroo. Jeff has been the keyboardist for the “The Willing”, the backing band for the great prairie singer/songwriter, and Soccermom recording
    artist Jason Plumb, former front man of the Juno Award winning band, The Waltons. His latest record All Is More Than Both, is the fourth release on which Jeff contributes keyboards. Jeff can also be heard on the Jason’s ode to the beloved Saskatchewan Roughriders Football Club - "Paint the Whole World Green" that plays at all their home games. Some recent highlights with the band include taking part in the Ships & Dip IV festival in 2011, put on by longtime friends of Plumb, the Barenaked Ladies; and a performance collaboration with the Regina Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Victor Sawa as part of their Pops series.

    In 2007, Jeff relocated stateside to Rochester, New York, to do graduate work at the prestigious Eastman School of Music, studying primarily with Harold Danko, well known for long-time associations with jazz artists Lee Konitz, Chet Baker, Thad Jones/Mel Lewis, Gerry Mulligan, and others. During his time at Eastman, Jeff instructed several university courses, and performed as a member of the Eastman Jazz Ensemble led by brilliant composer/arranger/ pianist Bill Dobbins. It was in Rochester, that Jeff began to play Hammond Organ seriously, becoming a regular on the Western New York and Ontario scene as an organist.

    Despite being busy with grad school in Rochester, New York, Jeff has spent a great deal of time performing at clubs in Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Quebec City, Regina, Rochester and Buffalo and performances at the Rochester and Saskatchewan International Jazz Festivals. Jeff has released two recordings as a leader - Double Entendre in 2012, and Belaney’s Secrey in 2013. Double Entendre, which Jeff on both piano and organ, with long time collaborators Ben Bishop (guitar) and Joel Kerr (bass) along with guest soloist Mike Murley, the great Canadian tenor saxophonist. Belaney’s Secret is co-led by alto saxophonist Donny Kennedy of Montreal, and features original music by with McLeod and Kennedy.

    As a teacher, Jeff has a Bachelor of Music Education degree from the University of Regina (2002) and spent five years (2003-2008) working as a public school band and choral teacher, both full time and as a substitute teacher in Saskatchewan. While in Rochester, he taught private jazz and classical piano lessons at the Eastman Community School. For the past seven years, he has been on faculty as piano instructor at the Prairielands Jazz Camp in Regina Saskatchewan.

    ANDY KING - Montréal - Trumpet

    Montreal-based trumpeter, composer and educator Andy King has for many years been an in-demand talent in Canada and internationally.  He has performed with The Barr Brothers, Juno award winners Bell Orchestre, Bonobo, Stars, Groenland, Corneille, Nikki Yanofsky, the Christine Jensen Big Band, the Joe Sullivan Big Band, Eric Lapointe, Pierre Lapointe and Damien Robitaille, among others. He has recorded with many groups and artists including The Barr Brothers, Pierre Lapointe, Nikki Yanofsky, Groenland, Corneille, Hey Rosetta, and Hugo Lapointe.

    Andy studied at McGill University where he earned bachelor and master degrees in jazz, as well as a bachelor degree in music education. While there he studied with Jan Jarczyk, Joe Sullivan, Kevin Dean, Ron Di Lauro, and Remi Bolduc.  Also, in 1998, while attending the Banff Center for the Arts’ Jazz Workshop, he had the opportunity to study with Dave Liebman, Kenny Wheeler and Kenny Werner.

    In 2014, Andy released the album “Modern Fiction” to rave reviews and won the Prix Francois-Marcaurelle award for best performance at the OFF Jazz Festival. In 2015, the group performed and competed in the Montreal International Jazz Festival. 

    In addition to being an avid performer, Andy is also involved in education. He has been the director of the McGill Jazz Orchestra 1 and was the head of the music program at Heritage Regional High School. In 2009, along with a small group of students, he accompanied Regine Chassagne from Arcade Fire at a fundraiser for KANPE, wherein they helped raise over $60,000 for aid to Haiti.

    PAT COLLINS - Toronto, ON - Bass

    Pat Collins was raised in Qualicum Beach, B.C. He attended Malaspina College in Nanaimo, B.C., and in 1986 received a grant from the Canada Council to attend the Berklee College of Music, in Boston, Ma., where he studied for two years. In 1988, Pat moved to Toronto, where he has been very active on the Canadian jazz scene, performing with great musicians such as Oscar Peterson, Dizzy Gillespie, Joe Henderson, Herb Ellis, Lee Konitz, Jimmy Cobb, Ed Bickert, Rob McConnell, Moe Koffman, Oliver Jones, Peter Appleyard, Diana Krall, Don Thompson, and many others. He has appeared as a sideman on approximately fifty recordings. In January, 2005, Pat released his first CD as a leader, on Cornerstone Records, entitled “In The Moment” featuring some of Canada’s premier jazz musicians, Mike Murley, Reg Schwager and Barry Elmes. The CD has received rave reviews, including “In The Moment is a CD that’s very easy to like”, (Richard Bourcier,, and “This is a classy contribution to the jazz canon”, (Geoff Chapman, Toronto Star). The Pat Collins Quartet was nominated for a 2005 National Jazz Award as “Acoustic Group of the Year”, “Album of the Year” in 2006, and Pat was nominated as “Acoustic Bassist of the Year” in 2005 and 2006.

    In addition to his busy performing schedule, Pat is also in demand as an educator and clinician. Pat joined the full time music faculty of Mohawk College, in Hamilton, Ontario in September 2005, and is also very active as a clinician and adjudicator across Canada. He has also taught at the Kincardine Summer Music Festival, the Humber College Summer Jazz Workshop, and at “The” Jazz Camp, in Parry Sound.

    For more information about Pat, visit

    CARSTEN RUBELING - Calgary, AB - trombone

    Carsten is originally from Rocky Mountain House, Alberta.  He has studied and performed in Toronto, Berlin and San Francisco, and holds a masters degree in Jazz from the City University of New York.   Carsten is currently based in Calgary where he enjoys a busy career performing and teaching with a wide variety of groups in the city and in western Canada.   He has performed and/or recorded with Sean Jones, Ingrid Jensen, Seamus Blake, Brian Lynch, David Braid, Michael Kaeshammer, the Foothills Brass, the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra and Decidedly Jazz Danceworks.  Carsten's original project VOLK has a new album coming out in April 2019.

    KRISTOPHER CRAIG - Regina, SK - guitar

    Kristopher Craig has been a full time professional musician since 1986. His biggest achievement was receiving the opportunity to perform with the Funk Brothers (the studio band for Motown and 2004 Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award winners) when they were in need of a guitarist to tour. He performed a number of gigs throughout the USA in 2005 and 2006, including a PBS Christmas Special called The Early Years of Motown which featured legends like The Temptations, The Four Tops, The Contours, Gladys Horton, Kim Weston, and more. 

    Kristopher began playing guitar at the age of ten and played bass in a local concert and jazz band, the Regina Police Junior Band, in 1990 finishing first runner-up in the semi-finals of the Fender Guitar Warz Competition. Throughout the years, Kristopher has become a sought-after guitarist in Western Canada, playing guitar, bass, and keyboards in a wide variety of styles with a wide range of groups and headline performers. 

    In 1994, Kristopher began playing with House of Payne, a very popular blues band throughout Western Canada. When the band was finished touring due to the illness of leader Jimmy Payne, Kristopher and George Taylor formed the soul/funk band Stepchyle, releasing their first CD under that name in 2003. While performing with Stepchyle. In 2004-05 Kristopher performed and toured with Mike Thompson, Dan Siljer, and Depen Pandya, backing up six time Juno Award winner, Serena Ryder. He has also performed and recorded with all types of groups and genres of music, including Joel Fafard, Brad Johner, Jerry Doucette, and Karen Plato. He has shared album credits with Dionne Taylor, Tommy Banks, and Mike Lent. Plus, he has performed onstage with Jack Semple, Donald Ray Johnson, Roy Gaines, Wild Child Butler, and 2003 Juno Award winner Jack DeKeyser, to name a few. 

    Kristopher has performed for theatrical productions as well, including a week long engagement at the National Arts Centre in 2011 for the play entitled Songs of a Prairie Girl, a play based on Joni Mitchell’s life in the prairies. Plus, he was Music Director for the CBC Radio show The Girls are back in Town, featuring Val Halla, Belle Plaine, Amy Simpson, and Suzy Vinnick. 

    Kristopher has recently formed a new band, Über Funk Orchestra, which is the evolution of two of his former bands Stepchyle and House of Payne. This new project is a tribute and a means to help raise money for former Stepchyle singer/songwriter George Tayler, who can no longer perform due to suffering two strokes in recent years. The band will perform shows this summer. Currently, Kristopher is currently the Music Director for the Cunard ocean liner Queen Victoria and performs every evening in the Royal Court Theatre backing many Broadway and West End Stars. 

    Along with his professional career, Kristopher is proud to have a large number of former private guitar students who have now become full time professional musicians. He is very much looking forward to passing on what he has learned to more young guitarists during the 2019 Prairieland Jazz Camp.

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