New York Symphonic Jazz Orchestra

New York Symphonic Jazz Orchestra


Symphonic Jazz Orchestra - a 33-piece orchestra dedicated to play new music where the boundaries between world music, classical, jazz and popular styles are blurred. Featuring many of NY's finest jazz musicians, the orchestra consists of a big band and a string orchestra combined.


The New York Symphonic Jazz Orchestra dedicates its efforts to developing a new genre: Symphonic Jazz music. The 33-piece ensemble galvanizes the power and traditional sound of the jazz big band together with the symphonic capabilities of an improvising string section. The collective musicianship and wide ranging expertise of these improvisers forges a long awaited partnership between jazz, classical, and ethnic music of the world. NYSJO's founder and music director, Sonia Jacobsen, has developed a culturally inventive repertoire that champions daring work from today's most adventurous composers of large-scale jazz and creative music. She believes that by encouraging and selecting repertoire that is a true melting pot of different influences, NYSJO can help create and strengthen a new aesthetic identity in jazz and creative music. NYSJO is devoted to the use of improvisational elements in orchestral music. As a result, the orchestra's sound is uniquely personal; each player's contribution is pivotal. Although typical for a big band, this kind of partnership is revolutionary within the symphonic orchestra context. The orchestra's style is accessible, modern and profound. Its members believe that this groove, the space where classical, jazz and diverse world music influences converge, provides a vision into the next century of orchestral music.


Our upcoming inaugural concert on April 19 2006 will be recorded and filmed for a promotional DVD. (No existing professional recordings available except a rough rehearsal recording)

Set List

- Ugly Duckling - by Sonia Jacobsen (Tenor Saxophone Concerto featuring Tim Armacost - a humoristic and funky quasi Disney-esque rendition of the fairy tale of the same name)

- Ragman - by Jim Hall (a trombone feature with Alan Ferber - a dramtic middle eastern blues)
click here to hear this piece:

- Vango Tan Gogh - by David Cutler (the drama and passion of Argentine Tango dancing is captured here in a post-modern Zappa-esque version)

- Butcherbird - by Sonia Jacobsen (a Soprano Saxophone Concerto featuring Arun Luthra - a burlesque funky piece in 7)

- Funny Valentine - arranged by Erlend Skomsvoll (in a symphonic cha cha cha style)

- Anyone Got One? - by Sonia Jacobsen (a violin feature for Chris Howes on violin inspired by African polyrhythms)

- Jigsaw - by David Cutler (a danceable funky piece in 13)