Club Profile: SFU Jazz Band

You do not need to be a student at the School of Contemporary Arts to register. PHOTO: SFU Jazz Orchestra

Through: Hilary TsuiSFU student and Member of the SFU Jazz Band

The SFU Jazz Band is made up of jazz enthusiasts (or “band nerd”) and provides students with the opportunity to socialize, play jazz, aand sharing memes, among other things. Although the actual date is unknown, members believe the club was formed in the 1970s, long before any of its current members were born.

In an interview with The top, SFU Jazz Band President Niko Kulka said, “Often our members would play jazz in high school, realize that they enjoyed it very much, and wanted it to continue in post-secondary.”

Everyone is welcome to join the group, regardless of instrument and skill level. This year, the club has a number of flautists, clarinetists, trumpeters, trombonists, saxophonists, guitarists, pianists and drummers.

In addition, people from all faculties are also welcome, and the 2021-2022 leadership team is a great example of this. There are students of all grades studying in the Faculties of Arts and Social Sciences; applied sciencences, comcommunication, art and technologyology, aof science.

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic preventing the band from reuniting and rehearsing, the club has been active for a year and a half. As COVID-19 limited their activities, the management team was able to host online and in-person socials, with their last social being an in-person meet. Super Smash Bros. tournament. Niko is cautiously optimistic about the possibility of repeating in the spring semester, but he recognizes the risk it can entail. “Our priority will always be safety,” he said.

At the end of a typical, non-remote semester, the SFU Jazz Band usually hosts a collaborative jazz night SFU Vocal Jazz, where they perform the pieces they have learned during the semester in front of their family, friends and teachers. Previously, the SFU Jazz Band has also performed at SFU and community events. These include Faculty Christmas Events, SFU’s Balding for Dollars Fundraiser, SFU’s Terry Fox Run Fundraiser, United Way Book Sales, aand the former Club Ilia.

Before the pandemic, rehearsals were held in the Forum Chambers at the Maggie Benston Center on Mondays beginning at 5:30 p.m. a.m. to 8:30 p.m. pm Members paid $10 per semester to help run the band, with dues going towards instrument maintenance, rental and purchase of sheet music. While much of their time was spent playing jazz, these rehearsals meant a lot more than just being a band.

“I was a scared and lonely freshman,” Vice President Efe Erhan said. “The jazz band provided [ . . . ] new friends, a weekly activity that got me out of the house, and an opportunity to keep playing music.

Jordan Ehrenholz, a former rehearsal leader, looked back at the jazz band fondly. “The Jazz Band has always been a fun way to spend Monday nights for me. I have always enjoyed and jumped at the chance to take saxophone solos and work on my confidence and improvisation,” he said. he declares.

He also enjoyed learning and playing different genres of music. Being in the Jazz Band not only helped Jordan learn to be expressive and become a better saxophonist; he left with a new knowledge of managing music groups. “I learned how to start and manage bands large and small in the SFU Jazz Band, a skill set that I use today and will continue to use in the future.”

For Tony, that was “the oopportunities there gaI [him] youo meet so many different people. Former Jazz Band librarian Dylan Dodd shared a similar sentiment and said, “For me it’s not so much the club that matters as the diverse group of people that make it up.”

Whether or not the club is able to repeat this semester, the management team aims to organize at least one social event. A movie night with The Earth is in the works, so be sure to check the SFU Jazz Band social media for updates. Plus, general club socials aren’t the only thing going on this semester.

For more information about the SFU Jazz Band and how to join, you can contact them on Instagram at @sfu_jazz or by emailing them at

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Henry R. Wright