WVSU | West Virginia State University
Christopher Clark
Instructor of Music Theory and Saxophone
Director of the WVSU Jazz Ensemble
302 Davis Fine Arts Building
(304) 766-3199
clarkcm@wvstateu.edu

Christopher Clark is a mutli-instrumentalist, composer, arranger, and educator.  Born and raised in Charleston, WV, Chris developed an almost obsessive interest in music from a very early age.  He began playing alto saxophone at the age of twelve and switched to tenor at thirteen.  He began studying music formally at West Virginia State College, where his saxophone teacher introduced him to the music of Lester Young, John Coltrane, and Wayne Shorter.  Chris quickly immersed himself in jazz and transferred to Marshall University. Upon graduating with a B.F.A. in Jazz Studies, Chris relocated to Louisville, KY in order to explore his work ethic as well as the city’s thriving local music scene.  After a year of living there, Chris was awarded a Graduate Teaching Assistantship with the University of Louisville where he studied Jazz Performance on the saxophone as well as Jazz Composition and Arranging. 

Chris has studied privately with Gary Stringer (2002-2003), Dr. Chris Mickel (2003-2006), Dr. W. Edwin Bingham (2006-2009), Dr. Sean Parsons (2006-2009), Michael Tracy (2010-2012), John La Barbera (2010-2012), and Chris Fitzgerald (2011-2012).  He has also had the opportunity to learn from musicians including Jamey Aebersold, Eric Alexander, Jerry Coker, Antonio Hart, Jim Snidero, Erika von Kleist, Dave Liebman, Rufus Reid, Jack Wilkins, Eddie Gomez, Lionel Loueke, Marcus Strickland, Sharel Cassidy, and Renato Vasconcellos.
 
Chris has been fortunate enough to share the stage with many great musicians including Lou Donaldson, Eddie Gomez, Antonio Hart, Jeff Hamilton, Clay Jenkins, Eugene “Snooky” Young, Houston Person, Valery Ponomarev, Renato Vasconcellos, Jamey Aebersold, Dave Dickey, Sherrie Maricle, Lou Fisher, Michael Tracy, Reggie Watkins, Chris Vidala, and the Huntington Symphony Orchestra.  He also played several sets on the 2009 Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland and the 2009 Jazz-a-Juan Festival in France.
 
After graduating with his M.M. from the University of Louisville, Chris moved back to the Charleston area where he currently teaches saxophone, music theory, and courses in music at West Virginia State University in addition to directing its jazz ensemble.  He has also taught at Marshall University.  Chris continues to remain active as both a composer and performer with musicians in Charleston, Huntington, and Louisville.
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