Saxophonist, Woodwindist, Composer & Educator Sharel Cassity (pron. Shah-Relle) is a musician on the New York, Chicago, and international jazz scenes. Listed as “Rising Star Alto Saxophone” in Downbeat Magazine for the past 11 consecutive years, Sharel has appeared on the Today Show, earned her MA from The Juilliard School under full scholarship, won the 2007 ASCAP Young Jazz Composers Award & has been inducted into the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame. Cassity has shared the stage with jazz luminaries including Herbie Hancock, Wynton Marsalis & the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra; as well as mainstream artists Aretha Franklin, Natalie Merchant, Vanessa Williams & Trisha Yearwood. She has released five albums as a bandleader and appeared on over 30 as a sideman, toured 24 countries and performed at leading venues like the Newport Jazz Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival & the North Sea Jazz Festival. Relocated to the Chicago area with her husband and son, Cassity is currently a professor of saxophone and piano at Elgin Community College in Elgin, IL; Columbia College and DePaul University in Chicago, IL. Sharel is a proud Vandoren Performing Artist.
2010-2020 Rising Star Alto Saxophone—Downbeat Critics Poll
2012 Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame, Legacy Tribute Award
2008 Ravinia Steans Institute Residency
2007 ASCAP Young Jazz Composer's Award
2007 Downbeat Student Music Award, Composition
2007 Downbeat Student Music Award, Jazz Combo
2006 Betty Carter Jazz Ahead Residency
2006 IAJE Sisters in Jazz
Sharel is a Vandoren performing artist and plays Vandoren reeds, mouthpieces,
and ligatures exclusively.
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"[Cassity] plays alto and soprano with a seriously soulful tone that’s impressive enough to stop a roomful
of seasoned jazz fans in their tracks" —Ken Micallef, Downbeat Magazine
"With any luck, Evolve will establish her [Sharel] as a household name among jazz audiences." — Michael J.
West, Jazz Times
“Sharel Cassity has the potential to be one of the leaders of this genreʼs next
generation” —J. Hunter, All About Jazz
Sharel Cassity is another no-nonsense lady of the horn...her solos have an
quality..and her deep blue alto wanes with melancholy”—Eric Fine,
Willing to teach
Beginner to advanced
Contact for details
contact for details