Vancouver ex-pat Thomas Houlden is currently in his first year of a Masters Degree in Jazz Performance at the University of Toronto. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Music from Vancouver’s Capilano University as both a vocalist and a trumpeter.
As a student in Vancouver, Thomas studied trumpet with Kevin Elaschuk and Brad Turner and voice with Rejean Marois, George Roberts, and Mary Jo Bischoff. He has performed several seasons with the Capilano University A-Band under the direction of Brad Turner, Capilano University’s Nitecap vocal ensemble under the direction of Rejean Marois, and UBC-1 Large Jazz Ensemble with Fred Stride. With these ensembles Thomas has performed alongside soloists including Randy Brecker, Ian McDougall, Don Thompson, Claudio Roditi, Ernie Watts, Eliana Cuevas, Phil Dwyer, Bill Frisell, David Linx, David Liebman, and John Abercrombie. At the University of Toronto he is currently studying trumpet with Chase Sanborn, composition with John MacLeod, and performs with the University of Toronto Jazz Orchestra and Andrew Downing’s Graduate Hybrid Ensemble.
On the music scene in Vancouver, Thomas performed as a trumpeter and vocalist for progressive rock band Two Apple Tobacco. He was also an arranger, trumpeter and founding member of the jazz-fusion band missingNo.; a band that has performed multiple times at MAGFest in Washington DC and has sold recordings around the world. Thomas also is an experienced brass and voice instructor as well as a freelance arranger. Since moving to Toronto he’s had the opportunity to work as a trumpeter with the Toronto Jazz Orchestra and has recently formed a handful of small jazz ensembles with local players, including Octorok; an eight piece band co-founded with Liam Gallagher.