Originally hailing from Boone, Iowa, Tessa Rae now lives in Salem, Oregon. Tessa Rae graduated in May 2014 from the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque with her Master of Music degree in Saxophone Performance. At the University of New Mexico she was the saxophone graduate assistant under the tutelage of Dr. Eric Lau. She also acted as the UNM Jazz Librarian, and the coordinater for the Computer Music Lab. She was the principal saxophonist in the University of New Mexico Wind Symphony throughout her tenure at UNM, and performed in Jazz I at the university, recording an album with the group in the summer of 2014.
Experienced in jazz, contemporary, and classical music, Tessa has performed in several North American Saxophone Alliance conferences, as well as abroad in Brazil, France, and Germany. In the 2014 NASA conference, she peformed with the University of New Mexico Saxophone Choir, in addition to premiering original duets by saxophonist Sam Reid. She attended the 21st Université Européenne de Saxophone in Gap, France where she studied with renowned saxophonists such as Claude Delangle, Vincent David, and Arno Bornkamp. As a member of the University of Iowa Saxophone Ensemble, she performed at the 64th Midwest International Clinic in Chicago. Tessa Rae has performed with musicians such as Dr. Eugene Rousseau, Jimmy Greene, Michael Philip Mossman, Ingrid Jensen, and Geoffrey Keezer. In masterclass appearances, Tessa Rae has recieved guidance from Chien-Kwan Lin, James Houlik, Dr. Jonathan Helton, and the New Century Saxophone Quartet.
Tessa Rae is a graduate of the University of Iowa, where she earned a Bachelor of Music degree in Performance and Music Education with Dr. Kenneth Tse. She has also had the opportunity to study with teachers including Glenn Kostur, Dr. Eugene Rousseau, and Dr. Thomas Liley.
Currently, Tessa Rae is a saxophone studio instructor and educator in jazz and music production and technology based in Salem, Oregon.