Alumni: Community Music

Michael Ruby

December 01, 2012

Michael Ruby - Saxophonist, composer, and bandleader, born in Toronto in 1987 and now living in New York City. Michael started playing the alto saxophone at the age of fourteen, influenced by Charlie Parker. He immediately started to study alto saxophone with Alex Dean. At seventeen, Michael knew his career path, and started to play tenor saxophone, soprano saxophone, clarinet, and flute. He attended the Humber community music program in his last two years of high school. Before entering into university, Michael was already becoming internationally recognized having received a Downbeat Jazz Magazine Award for Outstanding Performance on the tenor saxophone, the Humber College Community Jazz Program Woodwind and Musicianship Awards, and a selection to the Yamaha/Canada All Star Jazz Band at Musicfest Canada Nationals.

In 2006 Michael attended the University of Toronto on three merit based scholarships and attended the 2007 summer Banff International Jazz Orchestra directed by Hugh Fraser and the Jazz Workshop directed by Dave Douglas. In 2006 Michael was also the winner of Jazz FM's Project Jazz Award, which brought about a contract with Alma Records. He recorded his debut album entitled "Play Time" that year, and it was released late in 2007. Play Time is distributed by Universal Music and can be purchased on iTunes or at any major record store.

In 2007, Michael moved to New York City where he was awarded the President's Award to study at the Manhattan School of Music. He is currently pursuing his masters degree on full scholarship. Michael is already building a reputation in New York, playing gigs around Manhattan as a sideman, and touring with bands such as the Ari Hoenig Quartet and the Le Boeuf Brothers.

Michael has studied privately with George Garzone, John Riley, Miguel Zenon, Dave Douglas, Steve Wilson, and Donny McCaslin, amongst others. He has performed as a sideman with such notables as Hermeto Pascoal, Ari Hoenig, Chucho Valdes, and many others.