In the Spring of 2014, in Durham North Carolina, the founders of the Boulevard Ensemble were having a discussion. They were tired of hearing the same two things at every wedding they played or attended, either jazz standards, or a rock/dance band playing the same 40 or 50 songs. They decided they could take their love of rock and pop music and pair it with their knowledge and experience playing and arranging jazz in order to offer a truly unique experience at weddings and events. And so the Boulevard Ensemble was born.
Geoff trained in classical voice (2006-2012) under Joan Wittman. He has studied a myriad of instruments for over 30 years including: classical violin (1983 - 1990), classical piano (1990-1992), jazz trombone, (1991-1993), drums (1995-present), guitar (1995-present). He has decades of musical theater training and is a sound engineer hobbyist. In 2002-2003 he worked in studio with sound engineer Chris Manning (Metallica, Third Eye Blind, Santana, et al).
Tom Rau studied jazz performance and composition in New York City at the Collective Institute and The New School before returning to Virginia Tech to study with grammy award winning saxaphone player and band-leader Chip McNeil. A multi-instrumentalist, he also performs and tours with various musical groups in Durham, North Carolina playing synthesizers, keyboards, percussion, guitar, and electric bass.
Pianist and band leader, Noah Sager, has been at the forefront of the Triangle jazz scene for a better part of a decade. Noah has performed extensively throughout the Triangle area at venues such as West End Wine Bar, Sharp Nine Gallery, and Beyu Café. He earned a Master in Jazz Studies at North Carolina Central University where he played with jazz greats such as Benny Golson, Branford Marsalis, Antonio Hart and Stefon Harris.
We started The Boulevard Ensemble because we thought we could bring a new hipness and classic style to popular songs that we all love. It turned out that we could bring that same style and cool to high-end weddings and events as well.