A Montrealer, born and raised, Michael Bruzzese was surrounded by music at an early age, and began playing guitar at the age of 12. An interest and passion for Jazz Guitar emerged at the age of 17, where he studied the art at Vanier College, studying with Montreal guitarist Nick Di Tomaso and winning the J.L Big Band Scholarship. He continued his studies, and obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Jazz Performance at McGill University, while studying with Carlos Jiménez and André White. In 2022, he received his Master’s degree from McGill’s Schulich School of Music, and studied with Michel Lambert.
Michael is very active on the Montreal music scene, as a leader and a sideman. He has also performed in Quebec, Toronto and Ottawa. He has collaborated with some of the finest musicians in the country including André White, Kevin Dean, Dave Laing, Mike Rud, Michel Lambert, Donny Kennedy, Alec Walkington, Fraser Hollins, Adrian Vedady, Christine Jensen, Joel Miller, Dave Watts, Pierre Francois, Ira Coleman, and many more.
Being a regular performer over the years at Upstairs Jazz bar and Grill, Michael Bruzzese led a series of tribute projects to jazz legends such as Sonny Clark, Tadd Dameron, Horace Silver, Lee Morgan and Kenny Dorham. This was an important period of his development where he strengthened his love for the tradition of jazz music. Michael has also led many gigs, playing his own original music, and has composed dozens of his own works over the last few years.
Mike assembled a talented quartet for his debut album "Even When I'm Dreaming". It features award winning pianist, Gentiane MG, jazz legend, Ira Coleman, on bass, drum master Michel Lambert and Juno award winning vocalist, Caity Gyorgy. Mike is finding new ways to bring his music to life. This group explores groove, swing, and rubato pieces, and showcases his harmonic, melodic and compositional voice.