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Chris Byars: Bio

CHRIS BYARS is an award-winning saxophonist, composer, bandleader and educator based in New York City. He divides his artistic focus between development of original material and studying the vast repertoire of jazz composers of the 20th century.

As a cultural ambassador for the U.S. State Department, Chris has ventured to American Embassies in 50 countries to perform concerts and educational outreach. Trips in 2015 include Myanmar, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Albania and Kosovo.

His latest CD release, Chris Byars Plays the Music of Duke Jordan (SteepleChase), features eleven innovative arrangements of classic jazz tunes and the addition of outstanding guitarist Pasquale Grasso, in his commercial recording debut.

In the summer of 2014, Chris Byars directed the Jazz Division of the Cyprus Academy of Music International Summer School and Festival (CAMSSF), from July 21- August 1. Byars was co-director of the Jazz Futures Workshop in Cyprus from 2008-2013.

Byars is a featured performer, composer and arranger with the WDR Big Band in Köln, Germany in a live radio broadcast on February 28, 2015.

Chris Byars is a charity racer in the NYC Half Marathon on 3.15.15, running for The Herren Project.