Flute, Clarinet, Saxophone, Jazz Improvisation
Stephen Vail is a woodwind instrumentalist and educator native to the Northwest (South Kitsap HS). He received his Bachelor of Music in Music Theory from the University of North Texas (2006) and his Master of Music in Jazz Performance from Arizona State University (2014).
After completing his Bachelor’s degree, Stephen joined Holland America Line as a musician. During his 4 and a half years with the company, he would perform up to 5 hours a day, 7 days a week, for as long as 6 months straight. He considers this time formative as he was able to take his education and have it refined by real-world experience. He was also able to visit over a 150 cities in 60 countries during this time instilling in him an appreciation of many cultures.
Stephen decided to continue his education and moved to Arizona in 2012 to begin his Master of Music in Jazz Performance at Arizona State University. He performed and wrote music for the ensembles at ASU and also performed regularly in the Phoenix metropolitan area. Highlights include performing with Byron Stripling, Rufus Reid, the Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra, George Benson, Audra McDonald, and the Phoenix Symphony. After graduating from Arizona State, Stephen became the saxophone instructor at Grand Canyon University where he taught music majors in performance and education.
In 2016, Stephen, his wife Weena, and their son moved back to his hometown of Port Orchard. He now performs regularly throughout the Puget Sound area, directs the Bremerton Youth Jazz Ensemble, and teaches private lessons in saxophone, flute, clarinet, composition & theory, and improvisation.