Laila Biali

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Laila Biali
Laila Biali at 2016 BSOMF.jpg
Biali at Burlington's Sound of Music Festival in 2016
Background information
Born (1980-10-03) 3 October 1980 (age 39)
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
GenresJazz, smooth jazz
Occupation(s)Musician, singer
Years active2000–present

Laila Biali (born 3 October 1980) is a Canadian jazz singer and pianist. She has been nominated for and won a Juno Award and has worked with Chris Botti and Sting.[1]


Born in Vancouver, Biali began playing piano at a young age. She studied classical piano for many years. At the Royal Conservatory of Music she was attracted to jazz, and when she was nineteen she entered Humber College in Toronto. Four years later she released the album Introducing the Laila Biali Trio.[2][3]

She moved to New York City and found work as a pianist and vocalist for other musicians. While touring with Paula Cole, she met drummer Ben Wittman, and she and Wittman later married. In 2009 she sang background vocals for Sting's DVD A Winter's Night: Live from Durham Cathedral. She toured with Chris Botti and Suzanne Vega.[2][4] She has performed at Carnegie Hall in New York City and at Glenn Gould Theatre in Toronto.[5]

Her second album, Tracing Light (2010), received a Juno Award nomination.[6][2] She recorded House of Many Rooms (2014) with strings and the Toronto Mass Choir. For this album Biali wrote songs and the arrangements. In 2014, she joined the female band Rose & the Nightingale. A few years later she appeared as guest host for Tonic, a jazz program on CBC Radio 2, then became the regular host for Saturday Night Jazz.[2]

Her self-titled 2018 album won the Juno Award for Vocal Jazz Album of the Year.[7]

Awards and honors[edit]


  • Introducing the Laila Biali Trio (2003)
  • From Sea to Sky (CBC, 2007)
  • Tracing Light (self-release, 2010)
  • World Jazz for Haiti (2010)
  • Live in Concert (2011)
  • House of Many Rooms (self-release, 2014)
  • Laila Biali (ACT, 2018)


  1. ^ Sting Website news article: 24 November 2009 Archived 27 November 2009 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ a b c d e Jurek, Thom. "Liala Biali". AllMusic. Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  3. ^ From Sesame Street to Carnegie Hall By Jim Dupuis
  4. ^ Infantry, Ashante (25 October 2010). "Laila Biali won't be boxed in". Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  5. ^ Roy Thomson Website Article Archived 18 July 2012 at
  6. ^ Juno Nomination 2010
  7. ^ "Junos 2019: the complete list of winners". CBC Music, March 16, 2019.

External links[edit]

Media related to Laila Biali at Wikimedia Commons