THE ALBANY JAZZ BIG BAND meets as a class with the City of Albany Recreation and Community Services Department and is open to intermediate and advanced vocalists and instrumentalists. The band was founded by former Albany High band teacher Tom Lilienthal, and after his retirement was led by Frank Jensen for many years. Since 2008, the band has been led by saxophonist Bob Levenson with help from vocalist Rich Kalman and saxophonist Bernard Knapp.
Our band plays classic to modern instrumental and vocal jazz, swing, latin, and other genres arranged for traditional 18-20 piece jazz big band (saxophones, trumpets, trombones, guitar, piano, bass and percussion). We offer an opportunity to learn, play, and perform tightly arranged ensemble jazz, and to explore the vibrant experience of soloing and singing with a big band. Our players and singers are drawn from Albany and nearby Bay Area communities. The band meets for rehearsal most Wednesday nights on the Albany High School campus from late August until the following June. For information about openings and enrollment in the band, you can refer to the City of Albany Parks and Recreation Department Activity Guide, which is available at City offices, the Albany Community Center, or on the
City of Albany website.
We perform regularly in the community and around the Bay Area. We have been performing at the Solano Stroll for several years and have appeared at events for the Richmond Historical Society, the Pt. Reyes Dance Palace, the Albany Veterans Hall, and the MIRA Theatre in Vallejo. We are always interested in new playing opportunities and enjoy bringing our music to community events. To contact us about scheduling a performance, please send an email to