Virginia Mayhew


For the past 12 years, saxophonist-composer-arranger VIRGINIA MAYHEW has been an active participant in the New York jazz scene. A native of San Francisco, Virginia came to New York in 1987, where she enrolled in the New School's Jazz Program and was awarded its Zoot Sims Memorial Scholarship.

Since her arrival, Virginia has worked with such renowned artists as Norman Simmons, Toshiko Akiyoshi, Lew Tabakin, Slide Hampton, Joe Williams, Leon Parker, Dena DeRose, Clark Terry, Terry Gibbs, Kenny Barron, among others. She has appeared in most of the city's jazz venues, including The Blue Note, The Village Vanguard, The Village Gate, Sweet Basil, Fat Tuesday's, Birdland, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and Town Hall, and has performed throughout the United States, as well as in Europe. In addition, Virginia has established her credentials in the field of jazz education, as both a teacher of private students and an experienced clinician.

For several years, Virginia worked with veteran trombonist Al Grey. She is featured on his CD, Fab (Capri), and contributed several arrangements to his 1995 CD, Centerpiece (Telarc). Her arrangements also were performed during the "Battle Royale: Trombones and Alto Saxophones" concert, which was part of the Jazz at Lincoln Center series. In addition, Virginia has recorded with baritone saxophonist-bandleader Sahib Shihab, and appeared on two CDs with the big band, DIVA, and another with the Howard Williams Big Band. She is featured on the Jazz Nativity CD, Bending Towards the Light, which includes an all-star jazz line-up. Most recently, Virginia and her band have performed at the Monterey Jazz Festival, MaryLou Williams Festival at Kennedy Center, and others, as well as appearing on "Piano Jazz" with Marian McPartland.

Virginia's debut recording as a leader, Nini Green, on the Chiaroscuro label, received rave reviews from all corners of the jazz world. On this 1997 release she plays tenor, alto, and soprano saxophone, and is joined by long-time collaborators Ingrid Jensen, Harvie Swartz, Adam Cruz, and Leon Parker, as well as master pianist Kenny Barron. Nini Green was chosen "Best New Release of the Year" (1998) by Cadence Magazine, and was awarded four stars by Downbeat Magazine.

Virginia Mayhew