Wayne Leechford is a woodwind performer and instructor (saxophone, clarinet, flute, bassoon, oboe, recorder, penny whistle, harmonica, etc.) from Raleigh, North Carolina. Stage credits include artists such as Aretha Franklin, Johnny Mathis, Idina Menzel, The Temptations, The Four Tops, The Coasters, Joan Rivers, Clay Aiken, Regis Philbin, Susan Lucci, Lorna Luft, Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons, Harry James Orchestra, The Cab Calloway Orchestra, and New Century Saxophone Quartet.
Regionally, he has performed with the North Carolina Symphony, Virginia Symphony Orchestra, Raleigh Symphony, Tar River Orchestra, Raleigh Civic Symphony and Chamber Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle, Free Spirits Ensemble, North Carolina Saxophone Ensemble, Tar River Symphonic Band, North Carolina Wind Orchestra, North Carolina Jazz Repertory Orchestra, Tar River Swing Band, Orquesta GarDel, and Children of the Horn.
As a woodwind artist, he performs for the Durham Performing Arts Center – SunTrust Broadway Series, North Carolina Theatre/Broadway Series South, PlayMakers Repertory Company, Theatre Raleigh, Cary Players, and Raleigh Little Theatre. He has played for national Broadway tours including The Book of Mormon, Wicked, Phantom of the Opera, Motown, Kinky Boots, Newsies, and more. For a complete listing of show credits, click here.
His appearances have included live television, radio broadcasts, and studio recording sessions. Studio credits: Discovery Channel (MINI MONSTERS), TLC (Sister Wives), Discovery Health Channel (Clark Howard: Dollars and Sense), Warner Brothers (The Whole Nine Yards movie trailer), and documentaries including Bending Sticks: The Sculpture of Patrick Dougherty and Emptying the Skies. He performed for President Bill Clinton at the White House in 1995.
Mr. Leechford teaches woodwinds and owns and operates Leechford Music in Cary, NC. He gives private lessons and directs a chamber music program. And, he has been a clinician for secondary school wind ensembles, marching bands, and jazz bands. His students consistently receive top awards for their performances. He is the adjunct professor of saxophone at Meredith College.
He has commissioned and recorded over ten new classical works for the baritone saxophone. Wayne’s debut classical baritone saxophone CD, Works of Art, was released in 2012. He recently presented classical baritone saxophone recitals at the 36th International Saxophone Symposium, World Saxophone Congress XVI in Scotland, and 2014 North American Saxophone Alliance Conference.
Wayne Leechford received his BM and MM degrees from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts where he studied with classical tenor saxophonist, James Houlik.
- ArkivMusic CD review
- CVNC.ORG CD review
- Interview on WCPE 89.7, “The Classical Station”
- Interview on WUNC 91.5 “The State of Things”
“Wayne Leechford demonstrated just how good the saxophone can sound as a serious solo instrument.”
“Wayne Leechford is a technically assured saxophonist who plays with a warm and full-bodied tone.”
“Leechford’s articulation is precise and his tone is rich and full; expressive lyricism; (a) high level of interpretive and musical skills.”
“Skill like Leechford’s show why the saxophone is taking its place among true concert instruments.”
“Leechford’s graceful alto saxophone was a pleasure to hear, worthy of taking its place among all those more “classical” wind instruments.”
“Wayne is the real-deal.”