Jazztopad Festival
Sylvie Courvoisier & Kris Davis Duo – premiere
7:00 PM
NFM, Red Hall


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Sylvie Courvoisier – piano
Kris Davis – piano

NFM, Red Hall
plac Wolności 1, 50-071 Wrocław
from 40 to 65 zł

Sylvie Courvoisier and Kris Davis play in a duet of extraordinary representatives of the New York improvised music community and will present a premiere programme prepared specially for the 18th Jazztopad Festival in Wrocław.

Kris Davis from Canada and Sylvie Courvoisier born in Switzerland have been active on the New York music scene for over twenty years. Due to the age difference, Courvoisier is a more experienced pianist in this duo, but what draws attention in her achievements is not the sheer number of completed projects, but their diversity. Chamber music, open improvisation, compositions commissioned by broadcasters, theatres or concert halls, many years of cooperation with choreographer and flamenco dancer Israel Galván, recordings for Intakt Records, Clean Feed, ECM. It is up to the listener to decide what is the most interesting in Courvoisier's work: bands co-led by Mark Feldman, the improvising ensemble Mephista, interpretations of The Rite of Spring by Igor Stravinsky or her trio, which since 2013 has featured Drew Gress and Kenny Wollesen.

Kris Davis is one of the central figures in the improvised music community in New York, and the pianist’s educational and publishing activities are no less important than her performance. Davis has run the independent Pyroclastic Records label for five years and has recently become heavily involved in the Berklee Institute of Jazz and Gender Justice, which aims to eliminate the industry patriarchy. It’s been ten years since Ben Ratliff's article was published, in which he wrote that “the best way to decide where to go to jazz in New York tonight is to follow Kris Davis.” These words have not lost their relevance, but the pandemic changed the concert life so far. Fortunately, her subsequent albums are released very often, even every few months. The pianist initiates completely new line-ups and proposes fresh concepts, constantly posing musical challenges. This activity is appreciated by jazz organizations and the media.

Both Courvoisier and Davis have many duo projects to their credit. The Swiss recorded in duets with Mark Feldman, Mary Halvorson or Ellery Eskelin, while the Canadian devoted the entire Duopoly album to face-to-face meetings with artists such as Bill Frisell, Craig Taborn, Angelica Sanchez, and Tim Berne. In Wrocław, Courvoisier and Davis will join forces to present a completely new repertoire to the public. Festival premieres are always accompanied by a surprise. However, on the pianists’ records, we can find a lot of evidence of their improvisational and compositional mastery. So there is no doubt about yet another musical feast ahead of us.

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