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Frank Vaganée
Information Discography Concerts schedule
Instrument(s) Alto saxophone, Soprano saxophone, Flute, Composer, Arranger, Conductor
Date of birth March 19, 1966
Place of birth Malines
Contact information
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© Jos L. Knaepen
 Current bands

Brussels Jazz Orchestra (Leader)      The Acoustics (Leader)
Frank Vaganée Trio (Leader)      Zefiro Torna & Frank Vaganée Trio (Leader)
Del Ferro - Vaganée Group (Leader)      Frank Deruytter & O.T.O. Machine (Sideman)
Chris Joris Experience (Sideman)      Jokke Schreurs septet (Sideman)
Vaganée - Gerstmans - Verbruggen (Sideman)      Steven Delannoye New York Trio feat. Frank Vaganée (Sideman)
Saxkartel + Tutu Puoane (Sideman)     

As of young age he started playing music and later enrolled, he first studied classical music at the Mechelen Conservatory, and thereafter at the Royal Antwerp Conservatory.

Since 1983, he leads a variety of groups. He works for a while as a freelance saxophonist in the BRTN (radio & television) Jazz Orchestra and in '87 was responsible for a show with Toots THIELEMANS.
Was member of the TIMELESS ORCHESTRA, a big band with which he toured Europe and Japan.
In 1989, he was designated by the BRTN to participate in the orchestra of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) in Venice, and in 1992 at the "Festival de Jazz de Vienne" (France).

Nominated in 1991, Belgian press, Best young talent of jazz and in 1993, was awarded the CERA/Jeugd en Muziek-Prijs' (Cera prise of la Jeunesse Musicale).

His first album ' PICTURE A VIEW' was released in 1991.
This was the period during which he was part of a quartet named 'DEL FERRO-VAGANÉE GROUP', with Dutch pianist Mike Del Ferro. In 1993, they recorded "INTRODUCING" And later on "DEL FERRO-VAGANEE GROUP LIVE".
During a 4 years period the quartet played a total of 125 concerts including the recording of 7 radio shows, 3 TV shows, 2 CDs, concerts in Dubai (UAE), festivals in Belgium, The Netherlands, France, a series of concerts for ' Jeugd en Muziek Vlaanderen' (Youth & Music in Flanders), a tour with American saxophonist Harold LAND and another with jazz singer Carla WHITE and numerous concerts in jazz clubs.

Frank Vaganée was also member of a trio with Philippe AERTS (double bass) and Dré PALLEMAERTS (drums). They performed at the 'EUROPEAN JAZZFESTIVAL' in Rabat (Morocco).

Frank is the leader and one of the contributing composersof the outstanding BRUSSELS JAZZ ORCHESTRA, a big band of 16 musicians.
He was, in 1993, one of the founders. Since then, the band goes from fame to fame, collecting awards and praise and collaborations with Toots THIELEMANS, Bert JORIS, Kenny WERNER, Philip CATHERINE, Bill HOLMAN, Maria SCHNEIDER, Bob MINTZER, etc...

As of 1999, Frank is part of Nathalie LORIERS sextet. (Nathalie Loriers Trio + Extensions)
That same year he performed extensively
  • PARLANDO FESTIVAL, Brussels with BJO et Philip Catherine
  • FESTIVAL DES LUNDIS D'HORTENSE, Brussels, with Nathalie Loriers
  • UER- Concert, Mechelen, with BJO (Far East Suite by Duke Ellington)
  • BRUSSELS JAZZ MARATHON, Brussels, with Nathalie Loriers
  • DE JAZZDAG-DAG JAZZ , Mechelen, with the trio and P. Catherine
  • PUTTE with Del Ferro/Vaganée Group and Toots Thielemans
  • FETE DE LA MUSIQUE, Eupen , with BJO
  • JAZZ MIDDELHEIM, Antwerp, with BJO and Kenny Werner
  • LA NUIT DE RADIO 3, Antwerp, with BJO and BILL HOLMAN
  • AQUARIUS FESTIVAL, Antwerp, with BJO, Bert Joris and Paul Michiels (singer)
  • In 1997, he performed, as soloist, in Japan during a series of 10 concerts in collaboration with 'Ebina Rhythm Research Institute'. End March 1998, Frank stayed for 3 months in New York to further improve his musical talent and also played at the 'Texaco Jazz festival' in New York.

    In 1998, a new group is born with saxophonist John RUOCCO, Italian bassist Rosario BONACCORSO and drummer Dré PALLEMAERTS.
    They recorded the CD Frank VAGANÉE Trio feat. John RUOCCO : Trios.

    During 2000, Frank was involved with some important projects like:
    • FESTIVAL DES LUNDIES D'HORTENSE with BJO , Bert Joris, Philip Catherine
    • DE JAZZDAG DAG JAZZ with BJO and Bert Joris
    • GAUME JAZZFESTIVAL with Nathalie Loriers
  • JAZZ IN 'T PARK with Nathalie Loriers, BJO , Bert Joris
  • CLAZZIC PROJECT in collaboration with 'La Jeunesse Musicale' with BJO
  • In January 2001, during the IAJE conference in New York, Frank led the BJO with Kenny Werner during a concert that has greately impressed the audience and was hailed as an exceptional performance.

    More highlights in 2001:

    • Concerts with the BJO and Maria Schneider at the North Sea Jazz Festival Holland
    • THe Middelheim Jazz Festival Antwerp Belgium (including Toots Thielemans and Bert Joris),
    • the ESB Jazz Festival in Dublin Ireland.
    • Four concerts of the BJO with Bob Mintzer in Belgium.
    • Several BJO-concerts with Bert Joris and Philip Catherine.
    • Further BJO-concerts in Luxemburg, Brussels,Gent, Middelburg (Holland) and a concert at the Jazz Hoeilaart Festival.
    • Live cd-recording of the BJO with Belgian trumpetplayer and composer Bert Joris.
    • Première of a BJO-project with the Belgian popsinger Paul Michiels.
    • Concerts with Nathalie Loriers in Paris,France ,Liège (Jazz à Liège).
    "Frank Vaganée was mostly inspired by Charlie Parker, Cannonball Adderley and Ornette Coleman as well as by other instrumentalists, whom he studies in depth. He has blended all these influences into a personal style, marked by a marked technique, a total musical engagement, a passionate swing, intonation, tonality and well individual phrased melodies".

    From 1987 to 1991, he taught at the Jazz Studio in Antwerp and from 1992 to 1994 at the Sweelinck Conservatory in Amsterdam (Holland).
    Currently (since 1993), he teaches at the Ghent Conservatory and at the Lemmensinstituut in Leuven.

    The critic Juul Anthonissen described him like this:
    His most important sources of inspiration are Charlie Parker, Ornette Coleman, Lennie Tristano and other instrumentalists whose work he studied in depth. Inspired by all these influences, he created a personal style distinguished by an excellent technique, a total passion, a fantastic swing, an intonation and an individual tone, as well as pleasantly phrased melodies...
    His solos are always recognizable... Frank Vaganée no doubt belongs to the party of great European saxophone players.

    In 2001, Frank VAGANÉE received the Belgian DJANGO d'OR award.


    (See top of page for main discography)

    Same Vaya Con Dios (1988) Ariola LC116
    Port of Ghent Cameleon (1988) Pat More Rec. GR001
    Swing Support Avenue (1990) Swing Support
    Timeless Orchestra Plays Glenn Miller (1990) The Timeless Orchestra CDJC11015
    The Original Glenn Miller Orchestra (1990) The Timeless Orchestra Japan
    Songs for Mbizo Chris Joris (1991) VKH 001
    Picture a View Frank Vaganée Kwintet (1991) B. Sharp CDS080
    Introducing Del Ferro / Vaganée Group (1993) Del Ferro / Vaganée Group Hillstreet HSJ3008
    "The Del Ferro-Vaganée Group Live!" Del Ferro / Vaganée Group1996 A-Records AL 73057

    In the past, was also involved in the following bands:
    Frank Vaganée / Mike Del Ferro Quartet      Hommage to Jaco Pastorius
    Nathalie Loriers Trio + Extensions     

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