Ned Kantar’s background includes a B.S. and M.A. in music education from the University of Minnesota, where he studied theory with Mary Malcolm and violin with John Sambuco and performed under Frank Bencriscutto and Anthony Gilombardo. He did graduate work at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, studying jazz and arranging with Bill Dobbins and Ray Ricker. Following Eastman, he studied piano for 10 years with Herbert J. Wigley, Minneapolis.
As a music educator, Kantar taught at every level, from elementary through college. This included 11 years as orchestra director at Hopkins High School, where the orchestra was selected by audition to perform at Music Educators National Conference in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC, in 1976. He also served as a conductor with the Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies for 9 years.
As owner of Ned Kantar Productions Inc. (www.ajazztrio.com), Kantar has backed, booked, or produced many artists, including Wayne Newton, Melissa Manchester, Maynard Ferguson, Gene Bertoncini, Helen Reddy, Tony Orlando, Peter Duchin, the Dallas Brass, and Hank Williams’ Original Drifting Cowboys.
According to Kantar, “Teaching music business, aural skills, and improvisation allows me to turn students on to the real world of music. Through 35 years of teaching, 40 years in the music business, and 45 years of professional performance (classical and jazz), I’ve had the opportunity to excite students about this great art that for centuries has been considered central to an education.”
- B.S. University of Minnesota
- M.A. University of Minnesota