Canadian trumpet player/composer Dean McNeill is a Professor of Brass and Jazz at the University of Saskatchewan. Dean received a Special Recognition Award from the Saskatchewan Jazz Festival for his contributions to jazz in Saskatchewan. In 2013 he performed Allan Gilliland’s composition Kalla (i.e. classical/jazz crossover piece for solo trumpet and wind ensemble) that won Classical Composition of the Year at the Western Canadian Music Awards.
Dean currently performs in the Saskatoon Symphony and directs the Saskatoon Jazz Orchestra, the U of S Jazz Ensemble, and the Saskatoon Jazz Society’s Jazz Workshop program. Dean has directed the International Music Camp’s Faculty Jazz Ensemble, the U of S Kenderdine Campus’ Jazz Composer’s Retreat program, and has led many of his own professional large and small jazz ensembles on provincial tours, often recorded by CBC Radio.
A Yamaha performing artist, Dean has been recorded on over 20 CDs and as a guest artist performed with professional ensembles such as the Winnipeg, Edmonton, and Vancouver Jazz Orchestras. Dean has adjudicated throughout Canada and the United States and has performed alongside the likes of Hugh Fraser, Tom Banks, Brad Turner, Kelly Jefferson, David Braid, Bob Mintzer, Denzal Sinclaire, PJ Perry, Ingrid Jensen and Jon Balantyne.
Dean holds music degrees from the University of North Texas (Master’s), McGill University (undergraduate), and Grant MacEwan University (Music Diploma). He has released two critically acclaimed CDs as a leader respectively entitled Prairie Fire: Large Jazz Ensemble Music of Dean McNeill and Mélange: New Music For Trumpet and Piano. Most recently Dean performed on the Complete Rebirth of the Cool CD distributed on Cellar Live! records.
A recipient of the U of S Department of Music’s Dwaine Nelson Teaching Award, Dean’s past administrative activities include serving on the board of Jazz Canada; Canadian Music Centre; and as Head of the Department of Music at the University of Saskatchewan.