4 pianists on the 40th birthday of Jazz Juniors.
4 pianists on the 40th birthday of Jazz Juniors. The genius of Polish jazz piano music has four distinct faces: Możdżer, Wasilewski, Kaczmarczyk and Orzechowski, a.k.a. Pianohooligan. Apart from their outstanding careers, they have one thing in common – they all debuted at Jazz Juniors. The 40th anniversary edition of the festival will culminate with their joint concert during the gala, taking place on the 4th of December at the ICE Kraków Congress Centre.
It is an unprecedented event. The four outstanding pianists, known to lovers of jazz music worldwide, will meet on a single stage to commemorate the 40th edition of the competition which was their first step towards international career and fame. It is not only an artistic feast for Krakow, but also encouragement for young musicians to boldly realise their aspirations.
Leszek Możdżer is considered to be the most famous improviser in the country, who revolutionised Polish chamber jazz piano music. His original musical language carries some echoes of Chopin’s etudes and mazurkas, as well as Krzysztof Komeda’s pieces. He records and plays live with musicians such as David Gilmour, Nana Vasconcelos, Marcus Miller, John Scofield, Tan Dun, Pat Metheny, Zbigniew Namysłowski and Tomasz Stańko. The pianist finds himself the best in solo projects, as well as in his trio with Zohar Fresco and Lars Danielsson (The Time, released in 2005, achieved Diamond status, Between Us and The Light (2006), Live (2007) and Polska (2013) all achieved Double Platinum status).
In an annual survey of jazz critics, conducted for Down Beat magazine over a decade ago, Marcin Wasilewski was deemed to be a “rising star”. Apart from Tomasz Stańko, the pianist is the only Polish musician recording for the prestigious ECM label based in Munich, a breeding ground for the most outstanding improvisers in the world. For the last 21 years, he has been a part of the most famous Polish jazz trio in the world as a leader of the Marcin Wasilewski Trio, together with Sławomir Kurkiewicz (double bass) and Michał Miśkiewicz (drums).
Every release by the Krakow-based Paweł Kaczmarczyk immediately becomes a widely commented event in jazz magazines worldwide. His third album, Complexity in Simplicity was released on the prestigious ACT label. The artist received two nominations for the Fryderyk award – for the Jazz Musician of the Year and Phonographic Debut of the Year. He performs around the world, including Europe, USA, India, Africa, Asia and the Arab Peninsula. In the last days of October, he received the “Mateusz Trójki” award for jazz musicians, presented to him for Vars & Kaper – DeconstructiON album.
Piotr Orzechowski, also known as “Pianohooligan” is a pianist and composer, who graduated from Berklee College of Music, and one of the most renowned jazz musicians of the young generation. After his victory in the Montreux Jazz Solo Piano Competition (2011) he has been performing around the world and his albums are signed off by prestigious labels such as Decca Classics. Apart from his solo performances as a jazz pianist, he also performs as a soloist with leading Polish orchestras, including The Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra in Katowice, The AUKSO Chamber Orchestra of the City of Tychy and the Polish Radio Orchestra. The artist also collaborated with giants of contemporary music, such as Philip Glass, Steve Reich and Krzysztof Penderecki.
ICE Kraków Congress Centre, 4th December, 6.00 p.m.,
Tickets are available from InfoKraków information points and at eventim.pl/jazz-juniors.