Once out of school, an idea occurred to them: “What happens if we take out harmonic instruments from the group?” The answer was total freedom within their improvisations, the possibility to push back the limits of rhythm and melody as well as the discovery of a new approach to traditional jazz harmony. The MAQ was born!
After playing a lot in Montreal the MAQ was ready to begin its most recent formation. We added a trumpet player(David Carbonneau) to the original setting, whose mature tone and trumpet acrobatics have added color to the arrangements and excitement to the improvisations, and the driving, energetic drummer (Alain Bourgeois). It was a winning formula! After getting a grant from Jeunes Volontaires the group launched its new album, MAQ, made exclusively of original work, and continues to charm the public in Montreal as well as on tour with its compelling performances. The MAQ Mario Allard Quintet took part in the 2008 Off Jazz Festival of Montreal and in the 2008 Jazz Festival of Montreal. Mario Allard won the GALAXIE RISING STAR AWARD OF THE CBC for the composer of the most original music piece, selected among the groups competing for the Award in the 2008 Jazz Festival of Montreal.
MARIO ALLARD – Born in Cowansville, Quebec, Canada Mario started saxophone at age 12. Throughout his High School years, he played in many jazz settings while taking private lessons with saxophonist Alexandre Côté. In the following years, Mario attended St-Laurent’s Cegep, then McGill University in Montreal, where he obtained a degree in Jazz Performance in 2006. He has had the chance to study with some of Montreal’s leading musicians, including Jean-Pierre Zanella, André Leroux, Rémi Bolduc, Frank Lozano and Jan Jarczyk.