Edmonton-based freelance trumpeter and music educator with 25-years of experience, Joel Gray has shared the stage with some of the world's finest artists, including Tommy Banks, PJ Perry, Slide Hampton, Diana Krall, Nikki Yanovsky, Lew Tebackin, Allen Vizzutti, Gino Vannelli, Kent Sangster, Hugh Fraser, Jens Lindemann, and commercial talents Frank Sinatra Jr., the Temptations, Gino Vannelli, Wayne Newton, and Rollanda Lee, to name a few.
Known for his versatility, Joel is in high demand in both jazz and classical genres. He is a regular performer with many local artists and diverse musical ensembles, including the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, The Edmonton Jazz Orchestra, The Edmonton Jazz Collective, Edmonton Opera, Pro Coro Canada, the Don Berner Sextet, the Prime Time Big Band, the Retrofitz, the Polyjesters, the Tommy Banks Big Band, The New Orleans Connection, and Capital Brass, to name only a few.
Joel is also a veteran in the orchestra pit, having performed many professional musical theatre productions, including the National Broadway Tours of Book of Mormon, Wicked, Marry Poppins, A Chorus Line, Billy Elliot, Beauty and the Beast, The Wizard of Oz, as well as many local professional productions presented at the Citadel Theatre. He has recorded on over 30 CDs and performed numerous times for CBC radio, and played assistant principal trumpet with the ESO in Carnegie Hall in May of 2012, and was a featured soloist with the ESO in January of 2018 doing a "Tribute to Louis Armstrong."
As a music educator, Joel has been teaching since 1995, and teaches trumpet at MacEwan University and has taught at Augustana University and Keyano College. He is an instructor at MusiCamp Alberta and has adjudicated for the Cantando Music Festival, the Rocky Mountain Music Festival, the Foothills Jazz Festival, and the Kiwanis Music Festival. Since 2004, he has been the director of the award-winning “Littlebirds” big band.