Primary Instrument: Saxophone
Jasmine Lovell-Smith is a composer and saxophonist from New Zealand, currently based in New York City. Born to an American mother, a trained opera vocalist, and a Kiwi father, the voice was her first instrument. After discovering jazz in high school, Jasmine took up the saxophone and went on to graduate from Massey University (Wellington, NZ) in 2006 with a Bachelor of Music (1st class Honors) majoring in jazz saxophone performance and composition. She was awarded a full Honors scholarship on the basis of exceptional academic achievement.
As a composer/arranger, Jasmine’s works have been performed by such groups as the New Zealand Youth Jazz Orchestra and the New Zealand High Schools Jazz Orchestra. She has also performed widely in New Zealand and North America with a variety of ensembles. In 2008 Jasmine was selected as a participant in the Banff International Workshop in Jazz and Creative Music in Alberta, CA, and in 2010 she attended the School for Improvisational Music Summer Intensive in Brooklyn, NY. Jasmine seeks to create music that is lyrical and memorable, balancing intuition and spontaneity with carefully crafted structures. Some of her interests include setting poetry to music, polyphony and composing for woodwind instruments. She is also an experienced educator, and has worked as an Artist Tutor in the New Zealand School of Music’s undergraduate jazz program.
Jasmine relocated to New York City in the summer of 2010, where she leads her own quintet, Towering Poppies. The quintet performs regularly in New York at such venues as the Douglass St Music Collective and the Launchpad. Towering Poppies will release their debut album in August of 2012. Jasmine is also a member of the collaborative world/folk/improv trio Pangaea, and co-leads the “Common Wealth” sextet with saxophonist Angela Morris. She was recently accepted into the Master of Arts in Composition program at Wesleyan University, and will undertake study there with Anthony Braxton, among others, beginning in Fall 2012.