Scottsdale Independent

Saxophonist Ben Wendel to play with SCC Jazz Orchestra in Phoenix

Grammy-nominated saxophonist Ben Wendel will play with the Scottsdale Community College Jazz Orchestra at The Nash, 110 E. Roosevelt St. in Phoenix, Wednesday, Feb. 21, as part of the SCC Music Department’s artist-student collaboration series.

Tickets are $25 for the general public and $15 for students. The public can purchase tickets at

Ben Wendel (Submitted Photo)

Mr. Wendel — who has had a career as a performer, composer and producer — also will participate in a workshop at the school’s music department earlier that day. The workshop will bring him together with students and other musicians from the community, a press release states. The event will be open to the public.

Mr. Wendell’s career includes touring with artists such as Ignacio Berroa, Tigran Hamasyan, Antonio Sanchez, Gerald Clayton, Eric Harland, Taylor Eigsti, Snoop Dogg and the late Prince. He also is a founding member of the Grammy-nominated group Kneebody, according to a release.

The improvisation/composition workshop and rehearsal will give students and members of the school’s Jazz Orchestra a chance to interact with Mr. Wendel, who was born in Vancouver, Canada, raised in Los Angeles and who currently lives in Brooklyn, N.Y.

The SCC Jazz Orchestra performs under the direction of Eric Rasmussen, director of instrumental music in the school’s Music Department. The orchestra offers a unique mix of contemporary big band music as well as jazz big-band favorites.

Orchestra members feature both young Valley musicians and several jazz veterans.

The SCC Jazz Orchestra has performed with world-renowned guest artists, including Marshall Gilkes, Lee Konitz, Donny McCaslin, Chris Cheek, Karrin Allyson, Alan Ferber, Ralph Alessi, JC Sanford and Miguel Zenón.