Friday, July 15, 2016

July–Dec 2016: Pianist Laszlo Gardony performs in NYC, Boston, Tokyo and more

Internationally Renowned Pianist Laszlo Gardony 
July–December Concert Schedule

Performances in NYC, Boston, Tokyo, and more

Gardony’s 2015 release Life In Real Time earned extensive critical acclaim, including One of the Ten Best Albums of 2015 in the Boston Globe:

“Gardony adds a vivacious live performance to his impressive discography with Life In Real Time… The album mixes inventive originals with fresh, exciting takes on standards, maintaining a thread of inspired improvisation and calibrated group interplay throughout.” DownBeat, Editors’ Picks

“...these eight tracks contain more than enough musical riches to keep the ears happy and keep the toes tapping.”  – Dan Bilawsky, All About Jazz

“...varied, exuberant, post-bop heaven.” – Jon Garelick, Boston Globe

Internationally renowned pianist Laszlo Gardony is featured in an host of concerts in New York, Boston, Tokyo and beyond between July and December 2016.  The Hungarian-born, Boston-based pianist/arranger/composer will perform in duo concerts with saxophonist Marco Pignataro and with pianist Chihiro Yamanaka, as well as with his own trio, quartet and sextet.  The Laszlo Gardony Sextet is featured in his 2015 release, Life In Real Time, which garnered critical acclaim and was a DownBeat Editor’s Pick.  Concert details are listed below:

Saturday, July 16 – Berkshires Jazz Summer 2016, presented by the Pittsfield Jazz Festival 
8 p.m. – Taft Recital Hall, Berkshire Music School, 30 Wendell Ave., Pittsfield, MA
Tickets: $25 advance/$30 door
Laszlo Gardony Quartet, with Don Braden (sax); Yoron Israel (drums); John Lockwood (bass)

Saturday, September 24 – Beantown Jazz Festival, Boston, MA
Free and open to the public
The Laszlo Gardony Sextet with Bill Pierce (sax), Lance Bryant (sax), Stan Strickland (reeds, vocals), Yoron Israel (drums), John Lockwood (bass)

October 17-22 – Concerts in China, traveling with the Berklee Global Institute delegation
With saxophonist Marco Pignataro

Saturday, October 29 – Amazing Things Arts Center, 160 Hollis St., Framingham
8:00 p.m.
Tickets: $20; $18 student/senior; $17 member
The Laszlo Gardony Trio with John Lockwood (bass) and Yoron Israel (drums)

Friday, November 18 – Bar Harbor Jazz Festival
8 p.m. – Criterion Theatre, 35 Cottage St., Bar Harbor, ME
Tickets: $15-20
(207) 288-0829
The Laszlo Gardony Trio with John Lockwood (bass) and Yoron Israel (drums)

Sunday, November 20 – Highland Jazz
2 p.m. – Newton South High School Auditorium, 140 Brandeis Rd., Newton Centre, MA
Tickets: $18 advance; $20 door; $17 senior; $10 student
The Laszlo Gardony Sextet with Bill Pierce (sax), Stan Strickland (reeds, vocals), Marco Pignataro (sax), Yoron Israel (drums), John Lockwood (bass)

December 17-22 – Tokyo, JAPAN
Further details TBA
Two-piano concert with pianist Chihiro Yamanaka

Over the past quarter century Gardony has gained widespread acclaim for a series of inspired albums documenting his trio and his riveting solo recitals. The most recent recording in his treasure-laden discography is 2015’s Life In Real Time, a thrilling live album recorded at the Berklee Performance Center at Boston’s Berklee College of Music (where most of the ensemble is on faculty). The CD was named by the Boston Globe as one the ten best jazz albums of 2015 and earned wide critical acclaim.

Born in Hungary, Laszlo Gardony displayed an early aptitude for the piano. By five he had started improvising, devising little tunes inspired by the blues, pop and classical music he heard around the house. Immersed in the European classical tradition while growing up, he was drawn to progressive rock as a teenager, and spent countless hours improvising blues-based music at the piano. He investigated gospel and studied jazz, a passion that soon overshadowed his classical pursuits. “We had jazz and African music classes at the Conservatory,” Gardony recalls. “There were some very knowledgeable people and a lot of records. When it came to jazz it was a tiny community, but very inspiring.”    

After graduating from the Béla Bartók Conservatory and the Science University of Budapest, he became one of Europe’s most sought after accompanists and released his first albums as a leader. Possessing a powerful sense of swing, a strong feel for the blues and a firm command of post-bop vocabulary, he gained invaluable insight by sharing festival stages with Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers and Abdullah Ibrahim, among others.

A full scholarship to Berklee brought him to America in 1983, and a faculty position at the school upon graduation kept him stateside. He made his US recording debut with the acclaimed 1988 album The Secret (Antilles) featuring Czech bass great Miroslav Vitous and drummer Ian Froman, but it was his 1st place win the following year at the Great American Jazz Piano Competition that catapulted him into the national spotlight. He seized the moment with 1989’s brilliant release The Legend of Tsumi (Antilles), a trio session with bassist Dave Holland and drummer Bob Moses. “Being with Dave and Miroslav was such an education,” Gardony says. “If you really immerse yourself in those moments, it can change you, whether it’s one concert or a week-long gig.”   

In many circles Gardony is best known as a master of the trio format. He introduced his present band with Israel and Lockwood on the 2003 Sunnyside album Ever Before Ever After, and it’s gained recognition as one of the finest working bands in jazz. But he’s equally impressive alone at the piano, the format he first explored on 1993’s acclaimed Changed Standards and returned to again on his last album, 2013’s Clarity (both on Sunnyside). After the probing introspection of a solo recital it seems fitting that Gardony returns with a bandstand bash that captures some of jazz’s most eloquent raconteurs inspiring each other to ever more vivid tales. In short, Life In Real Time is jazz that’s the real deal.