Welcome to the website of musician and 4-time Western Canadian Music Award nominee Karl Schwonik!


July 1, 2017:

Honoured to be included in CBC's Top 35 Jazz Artists Under 35! A great list of wonderful musicians that are truly making their mark.


June 1, 2017:

My ensemble has just been named the winner of the 2017 Reinstein Jazz Competition hosted by the University of Cambridge! This is one of the top jazz competitions in Europe and comes with a cash prize as well as performance at a London jazz club.

January 1, 2017:

Check out the 'Writing' tab above for a piece of my recent research about arts policy. In this, I discuss the ups and downs of the grant review process and make a case for a Community Derived Revenue (CDR) policy approach, especially for rural arts organizations.

July 22, 2016:

The Edmonton Journal has published an article of mine this week that discusses the fabulous careers and honours recently given to Edmonton legends PJ Perry and Michael Massey. Read it in the 'writing' tab above or on the Journal's website:


May 1, 2016:

Op-Ed: Government Budgets and Arts Investment

The Globe and Mail (Canada's largest national newspaper by readership) has recently published an op-ed of mine discussing budget season and how investment in the arts is being dealt with this year throughout the country. If you didn't get a chance to read the physical copy, here is a link to the piece:


February 1, 2016:

Excited to embark on another Jazz-in-Schools tour presented by the Wetaskiwin Jazz Society. We are vsiting 6 schools this year in rural AB and want to thank all of our sponsors, and especially out lead sponsor TD, for their support.

October 15, 2015:

Op-Ed: the Arts and Canada's election

A quick note to share an Op-Ed I wrote about the arts in Canada and the upcoming federal election next week. It was published today in the Edmonton Journal newspaper, which is seen by many as a leading voice on the prairies for political coverage.

If you are in the Edmonton area, do pick up a copy of the paper today. If not, here is the link: http://edmontonjournal.com/news/politics/1015-oped-schwonik

May 1, 2015:

This fall I will be spending most of my time in Los Angeles as I embark on my DMA (Doctorate of Musical Arts) degree at the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California. Many thanks to those who supported me in the application process and especially to those who made my studies financially possible: USC (Thornton School of Music), Canada Council for the Arts, Anne Burrows Music Foundation and Sir James Lougheed Award of Distinction!

January 1, 2015:

Happy New Year! After a fantastic fall, 2015 is here and it will be an exciting one. This month the Hutchinson Andrew Trio goes into the studio to record with the Lily String Quartet of Calgary for our next release on Chronograph Records. The music features a lot of arrangements by the HAT pianist Chris Andrew and even some improvising by the classical musicians! Our next big event over at Wetaskiwin Jazz is our annual Jazz in Schools tour happening in the middle of February. Keep an eye open for our workshops and concerts that week and for word on our 2015 sponsors.

August 1, 2014:

A huge thanks to all the campers, sponsors, faculty and staff of the Wetaskiwin Jazz Camp and the Yukon Summer Music Camp! This has been another incredible summer of interesting performances and very fulfilling education experiences. This fall is shaping up to be another fantastic one: the Hutchinson Andrew Trio and Lily String Quartet are getting ready to enter the studio and a number of other great events are on the horizon to check out.

April 10, 2014:

It's been a busy start to 2014 with a very active Hutchinson Andrew Trio and some fun adjudicating assignments! After working with over 1,000 excited students this year with our Jazz-in-Schools program, we are excited start planning 2015 to visit a new crop of schools. The early-bird deadline for the Wetaskiwin Jazz Camp is just around the corner, as is a couple international trips for me. See the Calendar for more details.

February 4, 2014: Looking ahead to Jazz Camp '14

Registration for the Wetaskiwin Jazz Camp is officially open! The Camp (July 6-11 in Wetaskiwin, AB) will have Juno-nominated vocalist Karin Plato from Vancouver as our Special Guest Artist. See www.wetaskiwinjazz.com for more info and to register before the early-bird deadline.

January 15, 2014: Another busy, great year lies ahead!

2014 has just begun and we are off and running!  In February I will be on tour with the Hutchinson Andrew trio going coast-to-coast with a special addition to the group saxophonist Brent Mah. This is the same configuration as my first album 'Visions From the Farm', so it will be nice to get back on the road with these fine fellows. March will have yet another edition of our Jazz-in-Schools presentations as we visit more rural schools across Alberta. Many more exciting events on the horizon, see the 'calendar link' at the top for more info.

December 2, 2013: Wrapping up the year, looking forward to 2014!

Looking forward to the New Year and a lot of fun projects around the corner. Thanks to the Calgary Arts Development I will be traveling to New York City in January to study with drummer John Riley. More to come after the holidays!

October 1, 2013: Hutchinson Andrew Trio feature article in next issue of Downbeat Magazine

Check out the November issue of DownBeat magazine for a feature article on the Hutchinson Andrew Trio!  As some of you I'm sure will already know, DownBeat is the largest and most respected periodical for jazz in the world, so we are extremely excited to have been written about in this publication. www.downbeat.com

September, 2013: Hutchinson Andrew Trio's Prairie Modern selected as a Downbeat Editor's Pick

Here's another nice bit of news for the trio to report. Downbeat Magazine has given our album Prairie Modern a nice bit of recognition by making it one of their Editors' Picks. Check out the article here.

July 5, 2013: Montreal International Jazz Festival Award

I'm happy to announce that, following our Hutchinson Andrew Trio show to start our week off at the Montreal International Jazz Festival, we have been selected as this year's recipients for the TD Grand Jazz Award! This is a tremendous honour and we'd like to thank the organizers of Jazz festival as well as all those who helped to make our show here the success that it was.

Official Jazz Festival press release (2013-07-05)

Photos by Tom Inoue

June, 18, 2013: Western Canadian Music Award Nomination for Hutchinson Andrew Trio

The Western Canadian Music Alliance has announced the nominees for the 2013 Western Canadian Music Awards, and I'm very excited along with Kodi and Chris that our album Prairie Modern is up for Jazz Recording of the Year! The winners will be announced in October at this year's Breakout West which will be held in Calgary.

2013 Jazz Festival Tour with the HAT

Very excited to hit the road once again with the Hutchinson Andrew Trio to promote our new disc that we recorded last fall in NYC with Donny McCaslin! Here are the dates:
• June 20 Ottawa Jazz Festival
• June 21 Ottawa Jazz Festival
• June 23 Edmonton International Jazz Festival
• June 26 TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival
• June 27 Victoria JazzFest
• July 1 Montreal International Jazz Festival

See the 'Calendar' section listing for more details.

Jazz Camp Scholarships Available

The Wetaskiwin Jazz Camp (July 14-19 in Wetaskiwin, AB) has 6 Full-tuition scholarship available!  The deadline to apply for these is this Friday, June 7... see www.wetaskiwinjazz.com for more details.  This year's camp promises to be our best yet with special guest and 2-time Grammy Award nominated pianist Zaccai Curtis joining us from NYC!


Summer in the Yukon!

Really looking forward to joining the faculty this summer for the Yukon Summer Music Camp!  The Camp runs from July 29 - August 3 in Whitehorse and promises to be a fantastic week with great students and wonderful faculty. If you are in the area, sign up for a class!

April 1, 2013:

Just finished a fantastic project with the Hutchinson Andrew Trio this past month! Thanks to the Lily String Quartet and everyone who supported the group. The new CD, Prairie Modern, is available on iTunes and is rocketing up the charts.


This week I have the great pleasure of performing with Peter Zak and Walt Weiskopf from New York City! See the Calendar for more information.


February 20, 2013:

Our annual Jazz-in-Schools tour is just around the corner (Feb. 25 - Mar. 1)! We are bringing our 'Edutainment' to 13 new schools this year in rural Alberta. Will be a lot of fun!

Also, I am very fortunate to be a part of an upcoming project with the Hutchinson Andrew Trio and the Lily String Quartet. We are performing around the province in the coming months with what will hopefully be a long-term project. Kudos to bassist Kodi Hutchinson and pianist Chris Andrew for their fantastic artistic vision!

For more information, check out the calendar section.

January 28, 2013: 5th Annual Wetaskiwin Jazz Camp

Registration for the 5th annual Wetaskiwin Jazz Camp (July 14-19) is now open!
Scholarships available as well. See www.wetaskiwinjazz.com for more info.

December 1, 2012: Jazz-in-Schools tour

Our annual Jazz-in-Schools tour (February 25 - March 1, 2013) is now fully booked! See the 'Calendar' tab at the top for more info.

October 15, 2012: Wetaskiwin Jazz Camp special guest

Excited to announce that 2-time Grammy nominated pianist Zaccai Curtis will be our Special Guest Artist at the 5th annual Wetaskiwin Jazz Camp (July 14-19, 2013)!

www.wetaskiwinjazz.com     www.zaccaicurtis.com

September 1, 2012: News of upcoming recordings

Very honoured to perform on two exceptional recordings this summer/fall.

The first was with Jens Lindemann and All-Star Brass in Banff. Look for the release in the spring of 2013!

Also, Hutchinson Andrew Trio is recording a new CD in New York City with Donny McCaslin and Rogerio Boccato this September. Amazing music and fantastic musicians!.

2012 Wetaskiwin Jazz Camp

The 2012 Wetaskiwin Jazz Camp is just around the corner (July 8-13)! There are still a couple of spots open...see www.wetaskiwinjazz.com for more details.

2012 Enbridge Nextfest

Excited to announce I have been named one of the 2012 Enbridge Nextfest Emerging Artists! This award is given annually to artists for their future career endeavors. www.nextfest.ca

Karl Schwonik and Chicago Goes West head to Germany!

We are very excited to be performing at the Canadian Blast at JazzAhead! This is an awesome festival and will be a great event. jazzahead.de

Karl Schwonik - Drumset
James Davis - Trumpet
Sean Pentland - Bass


1+4 Tours Across Canada

I'm now off across Canada with Remi Bolduc (in the east), Mike Murley (in the west), James Davis, Chris Andrew and Kodi Hutchinson to share music from the album 1+4. Catch us in a city near you!

See the full tour schedule here.


PREVIOUS NEWS:  2012 :: 2011 :: 2010 :: 2009 :: 2008

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© 2017. Karl Schwonik