Sasha Berliner is a musician, composer, producer, and band leader from San Francisco, CA.
Sasha started playing drums at eight years old. She pursued a jazz emphasis at her high school, Oakland School for the Arts, where she picked up the vibraphone at age 13. During this time period, Sasha made numerous musical strides - at the age of 14, she was commissioned to lead a group performing an arrangement of one of multi-grammy award winning indie artist Beck Hansen's songs, alongside Beck himself. She was a two year member of director Paul Contos’ SFJAZZ High School All-Stars Orchestra, the winners of the 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2017 big band conglomerate division at the Next Generation Jazz Festival and winner of the 2016 conglomerate division at the Portland Jazz Festival. In the spring of 2017, was selected to attend the Banff International Workshop for Jazz & Creative Music run by pianist Vijay Iyer on the program's full scholarship. She was asked to headline festivals like the Atlanta Jazz Festival, NYC Winter Jazz Festival, NYC Composers Now Festival, and Deutsches Jazz Festival in Frankfurt, Germany, all by the age of 19. Soon after, she was deemed one of SF Jazz's 10 Rising Female Instrumentalists for 2018.
Sasha has gone on to record music at studios such as the well renowned Fantasy Studios in Berkeley, CA, Flux Studios in New York, and Jingletown Studios in Oakland, CA. She has performed at venues such as the Fox Theater, Great American Music Hall, The Jazz Gallery, Treasure Island Music Festival, Davies Symphony Hall, the Jazz Education Network Conference, the SF Jazz Miner Auditorium, and the Next Generation Monterey Jazz Festival. She has been featured by Hot House Jazz Magazine, Downbeat Magazine, The SF Jazz Education Center, PBS News Hour, and The New York Times for both her musicianship and her activism.
She has had the honor of sharing the stage with musicians such as Ravi Coltrane, Ambrose Akinmusire, Matt Wilson, Jane Ira Bloom, Billy Hart, Melissa Aldana, Ledisi, Vince Lateano, Victor Wooten, and Tyshawn Sorey, and has received personal recognition from musicians such as Sean Jones, Tia Fuller, Terri Lyne Carrington, Matt Stevens, Jen Shyu, Antonio Sanchez, Miguel Zenon, and Obed Calvaire.
Sasha is currently attending The New School of Jazz and Contemporary Music in New York City. She studies under contemporary jazz vibraphonists Stefon Harris and Chris Dingman, as well as pianist, scholar, and composer Vijay Iyer. Sasha also currently works for Biophilia Records, the environmentally conscious music label cultivated by pianist Fabian Almazan. She looks forward to teaching as a faculty member at the MalletLab Intensive in Del Ray, Florida in August 2018. Sasha is also an endorsing artist for BlueHaus Mallets. She desires to speak out about political and social justice through her music, something her Bay Area upbringings and instrumentalist background have passionately yielded. She hopes to develop further sophistication in her sound and extend her musical abilities in New York and beyond. Sasha's next major musical project, her sophomore album "Azalea", is projected to release by the end of 2018.
PRAISE FOR SASHA BERLINER
"As a versatile drummer and gifted vibraphone player, Sasha wields a technique and musical sense that portends a thrilling career. In her original works, she also deserves significant praise, having already asserted herself as a creative, genre-defying composer and excellent bandleader with a keen sense of possibilities for the music." - Seton Hawkins, Hot House Jazz Magazine.
"(Sasha's) playing is impressive and passionate; a joy to hear." - David Friedman, renowned educator and percussionist, Berlin University of the Arts chair.
An "excellent soloist...a great risk-taker." - Andrew Cyrille, renowned jazz and avant-garde drummer, performed with Cecil Taylor, Carla Bley, Reggie Workman, Coleman Hawkins, and more.
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