Chris Vadala


One of the country's foremost woodwind artists, Chris Vadala is in demand as a jazz/classical performer and educator. He has appeared on more than 100 recordings to date, as well as innumerable jingle sessions, film and TV scores, performing on all the saxophones, flutes, and clarinets. A native of Poughkeepsie, N.Y., he graduated from the Eastman School of Music, earning the honor of the Performer's Certificate in saxophone as well as a B.M. in Music Education, received an M.A. in clarinet from Connecticut College, and pursued postgraduate study in woodwinds at Eastman.

Professor Vadala is currently Director of Jazz Studies and Saxophone Professor at the University of Maryland. Previous academic appointments include teaching studio woodwinds and conducting jazz ensembles at Connecticut College, Montgomery College, Hampton University, Prince George's Community College and Mount Vernon College, as well as Visiting Professor of Saxophone at the Eastman School of Music, 1995 and 2001.

Mr. Vadala's performing career has been highlighted by a long tenure as standout woodwind artist with the Internationally recognized Chuck Mangione Quartet, which included performances in all 50 states, Canada, Australia, Japan, Phillipines, China, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Bermuda, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Dominican Republic, England, Italy, France, Germany, Austria, Netherlands, Poland, Belgium, and Switzerland, and performing credits on five gold and two platinum albums, plus two Grammy, one Emmy, and one Golden Globe Award. In addition, he has performed and/or recorded with such greats as Dizzy Gillespie, Quincy Jones, B.B. King, Chick Corea, Ella Fitzgerald, Aretha Franklin, Sarah Vaughn, Natalie Cole, Herbie Hancock, Ray Charles, Henry Mancini, Doc Severinsen, Phil Woods, Joe Lovano, and many others.

As one of The Selmer Company's most requested clinicians, Mr. Vadala travels worldwide, performing with and conducting student and professional jazz ensembles, symphonic bands, and orchestras. Within the past six years alone, Mr. Vadala has appeared with over 200 groups across the nation and Canada, and has conducted 28 All-State Jazz Ensembles. He served three terms as President of the Maryland unit of the International Association of Jazz Educators, and is now a member of its Executive Board (College Faculty Representative).

Mr. Vadala's column on woodwind doubling appears regularly in the Saxophone Journal, and he has authored articles for many other magazines. He has been a Downbeat magazine poll finalist in four categories, the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Study grant, and has published a number of original compositions and arrangements (Medici Music & Cimarron Publications). His book, Improve Your Doubling (Dorn Productions) is already acclaimed as a valuable addition to woodwind literature.

Watch Past Performances

Video 6/13/1999: Chris Vadala

The Chris Vadala Quartet performs a concert of jazz favorites and standards.

Chris Vadala