17th Annual Deer Isle Jazz Festival: Gary Smulyan Duo

The Deer Isle Jazz Festival has been breaking boundaries, enriching the state’s cultural life, and filling the summer air with beautiful music since 2001. World-class jazz musicians and fans from all over the New England region travel Down East to spend an evening together in our intimate and acoustically charmed Stonington Opera House.

This year, the Festival is expanding to three nights, at venues across the island. We begin on Friday night the Stonington Opera House with Nicole Mitchell’s ARTIFACTS trio. Saturday night we travel to the Reach Performing Arts Center for an evening with the Campbell Brothers, and Sunday night, finish off you jazz weekend at gWatson Gallery for an intimate evening with the Gary Smulyan Duo.

17th Annual Deer Isle Jazz Festival: Gary Smulyan Duo

Standing at the summit of baritone saxophone players, Gary Smulyan, continues to enthrall audiences with his hearty tone and the energy of his playing. His music ranges from standards to his own compositions.  Above all, he swings.

Smulyan, frequent winner of Downbeat Magazines critic’s and reader’s polls, has recorded twelve CDs as a leader and has played as a sideman on over 100 recordings.  He has performed on twelve Grammy Award winning recordings. 

Gary Smulyan began his career playing in Woody Herman’s Thundering Herd and since then has performed with luminaries including Dizzy Gillespie, Stan Getz, Charles Mingus, Ray Charles, and B.B. King.  Today, besides leading his own band, he is a mainstay in the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra and performs frequently with Joe Lovano, Dave Holland and others.