Michael Johancsik is a saxophonist, multi-instrumentalist, composer, arranger and teacher living in Montreal, Quebec since 2009. When he was 11 years old he was given his first saxophone by his grandfather whose deep love for the jazz tradition, especially big-toned swing tenor players like Coleman Hawkins and Chu Berry, would be a lasting influence and inspiration. He is gaining a reputation as a creative and melodic voice on the instrument and as a composer/arranger.
Michael recently completed a Master’s degree at McGill’s prestigious Schulich School of Music, studying under Kevin Dean and Joe Sullivan. In his time at Mcgill he spent 3 years in McGill’s flagship Jazz Orchestra 1 under the direction of Gordon Foote and Joe Sullivan, playing lead alto as well as first tenor. He has studied privately with Jim Brenan in Calgary and Remi Bolduc and Frank Lozano in Montreal, and has also studied under John Hollenbeck, Ralph Bowen, Fraser Hollins, Andre White, Jan Jarczyk, Greg Clayton, and Chris McCann. Over the years he has performed in many of Montreal’s best music venues, including Upstairs, Dièse Onze, Casa del Popolo, L’Astral, and Resonance Cafe.
He is currently active as a freelance performer, writer, and teacher in Montreal. He is a permanent member of many different musical groups, including the Laura Anglade Quintet, l’Ensemble Alex Le Blanc, the Oops Kitchen, the Taylor Donaldson Octet and Big Band as a performer as well as contributing composer and arranger, and leading his own small groups.