A two- generation dynamic jazz sextet playing original compositions and unusual arrangements of standards in the styles Straight Ahead, New Orleans, Latin jazz, Afro, and EuroJazz.
Theo (Ted) Saunders, a native New Yorker, has lived in California since 1985, but his musical career remains international in scope. Saunders' musical odyssey has taken him to four continents and more than twenty countries.
He has performed in many of the world's most prestigious jazz festivals, concert halls and night clubs, with distinguished jazz artists including:
Freddie Hubbard, Carla Bley, Charles Lloyd, Bob Brookmeyer, Harold Land, Buddy Collette, Eddie Harris,Ted Curson, James Moody, Bobby Hutcherson, Teddy Edwards, Jack Dejohnette, Joe Lovano, Jimmy Garrison, Pharoah Sanders, Sonny Fortune, Slam Stewart, Al Cohn, Zoot Sims ,Reggie Workman, Curtis Fuller, Rashied Ali, Mike Stern, Benny Powell, Chris Conners, Morgana King & Roseanna Vitro,David "Fathead" Newman, J.R. Montrose, Brew Moore,Sonny Greenwich, John Klemmer, Mark Egan, Wilbur Ware , Steve Khan, Henry Franklin, Azar Lawrence, Carl Burnett, Jack Wilkins, Steve Slagle, Dennis Irwin, Roy McCurdy, Eddie Gomez, Cecil McBee, Rick Laird, John Heard, Al Grey, Barbara Morrison, Lanny Morgan, Horacee Arnold, Jerry Bergonzi, Harvey Wainapel, Herbie Lewis, Sal Marquez, Hadley Caliman, Putter Smith, Gary Foster, Beaver Harris, Alphonse Mouzon, Benn Clatworthy, Dick Berk, Richie Cole, Garnett Brown, Justo Almario, Mike Richmond, Bob Sheppard, Bennie Maupin, Dave Binney, Bobby Bradford, Frank Morgan, Harvie Swartz, Tierney Sutton, Judi Silvano, Roberta Gambarini, Chip White, Phil Grenadier, Tom Harrell, Rich Perry, Clifford Jarvis, Carl Allen, Phil Ranelin, Pat Britt, Tony Dumas, Steve Swallow, Victor Lewis, John Abercrombie, Joe Diorio, J.R. Mitchell, Calvin Hill, Charles Owens, Richard Reid, , Adam Rodgers, John B. Williams, Ed Neumeister, Terrell Stafford, Wycliffe Gordon, Larry Koonse, Darek Oles, Dave Stryker, Steve Marcus, Don Menza, Bill Watrous, Mon David
His diverse musical activities have included musical director for opera and dance productions, for cabaret singers, and international musical theatre. He has played with many well known Latin, R&B, and rock artists, including Claudio Roditi, Victor Brasil, Ray Mantilla, Willie Bobo, Bobby Matos, Raul De Souza, Ray Armando,Claudio Caribe, Guillerme Franco, Bobby Rodriguez, Gladys Knight, Four Tops, Elephants Memory, and is a former member (Piano) of the Jazz Tap Ensemble. He also has performed in collaboration with poet David Meltzer and assemblage artist George Herms.
As a composer, Theo has numerous jazz & rock compositions to his credit as well as original scores for dance, theatre, radio and multimedia production. His compositions have recently been recorded by Henry Franklin, Ray Armando, Benn Clatworthy, Bobby Matos, and Bruce Paulson. His biographical sketch appears, in "People in Jazz-Jazz keyboard improvisors of the 19th and 20th centuries" by Bill Lee.
Major Festivals, Concert Halls and Clubs
JVC Jazz Festival - NYC
Antibes Jazz Festival - Juan-Les-Pin, France
NOS Jazz Festival - Amsterdam
North Sea Jazz Festival - Den Hague, The Netherlands
Sarasota Springs Jazz Festival - Sarasota Springs
Montreal Jazz Festival, Montreal
Palais D"Europe - Le Touqet, France
Canada Jam II - Toronto, Canada
Montreaux Jazz Festival - Montreaux
Avery Fischer Hall - NYC
Carnegie Hall - NYC
Greek Theatre - Los Angeles
Riga Sports Palace - Latvia
Montmarte - Copenhagen
Metropol - Berlin
Village Vanguard - NYC
Sweet Basil - NYC
Ojai Jazz Festival - Ojai, CA
UCLA Jazz Festival
Santa Monica Jazz Festival
Santa Barbara Jazz Festival
Catalina's - Los Angeles
Jazz Bakery - Los Angeles
Sonoma Jazz Festival
San Jose Jazz Festival
New Haven Jazz Festival
Temecula Jazz Festival
Barranquilla Jazz Festival
Medellin Jazz Festival
Central Avenue Jazz Festival-Los Angeles
The World Stage - Los Angeles
Musical Score for Waterside - Plexus Dance Theatre, Venture, CA.
Musical score for Vincent - A Passionate Journey Into The Life Of Van Gogh, a play by Leonard Nimoy.
Music for Chekhov Short Stories, a series for Public Radio.
Music for The Wood Demon, a Chekhov play produced by the Mark Taper Forum, Los Angeles, CA.
Musical score for the Sequoia National Park Centennial Multimedia Presentation.
Original Music for Verse of Fortune, a musical theatre piece currently in development that is based on the life of Charles Baudelaire
Over One Hundred jazz & rock compositions.
Musical Director (MD) for the play Peace Child, produced in both the US & USSR.
MD for Trio, an opera by Noa Ain - performed at the Berkshire Music Festival; first American Music Theatre Festival, Philadelphia; and at Carnegie Hall.
MD for The Outcast, an opera by Noa Ain, performed at Merkin Hall, NYC, Brooklyn Academy of Music, and Houston Grand Opera.
MD for Verse of Fortune by Christian Holder and Noa Ain-Musical Theater based on the life and poetry of Charles Baudelaire....currently in development.
MD for singer-actress Lanie Kazan.