Matt Herskowitz (Jazz)
““What made the concert extraordinary was Herskowitz’s beyond-brilliant technique. He was, of course, capable of subtlety, but he was astoundingly adept at impossibly fast and intricate passages... He also played the most wildly rhythmic rendition of Gershwin’s “I’ve Got Rhythm” that I’ve ever heard.”” City Newspaper, Rochester, NY
After hearing him perform for the first time, Dave Brubeck said of Curtis Institute educated composer pianist, Matt Herskowitz “now I guess I can retire“. Signed as the successor to Oscar Peterson by Justintime Records, Herskowitz is well known for his work as a classical pianist and jazz virtuoso.
Uniquely combining the superlative technique of a classical virtuoso with his prowess in jazz, world music and free improvisation, pianist, composer and arranger Matt Herskowitz has carved out a unique and personal voice in music. Over the course of the last decade, Matt has produced a series of critically-acclaimed recordings, premiered his works in settings from New York's Central Park to Germany's Köln Philharmonie, collaborated with top classical, jazz and pop artists, and has performed at music festivals across the globe.
His composition “Bach, à la Jazz” was featured in the Academy Award winning, animated film “The Triplets of Belleville“.
His jazz arrangements of the work of Chopin, Satie, Bach, and other giants of the classical repertory have been the subject of several live filmed performances, currently available internationally through Medici TV.
His compositions have been heard around the world, including with the chamber orchestra, The Knights in New York’s Central Park.
Herskowitz fuses what is best of classical and jazz music and delivers performances of such intense virtuosity that he leaves audiences breathless.
“What made the concert extraordinary was Herskowitz’s beyond-brilliant technique. He was, of course, capable of subtlety, but he was astoundingly adept at impossibly fast and intricate passages... He also played the most wildly rhythmic rendition of Gershwin’s “I’ve Got Rhythm” that I’ve ever heard.”
— City Newspaper, Rochester, NY
Matt Herskowitz, classical / Jazz pianist with "Romantics a la Jazz" and "Ravel meets Gershwin"
Program "Romantics in Jazz" About:
An organic fusion of classical interpretation with jazz improvisation, this program represents Matt´s uniquely personal perspective and vision of expanding the boundaries of classical performance using the language of jazz and the freedom of spontaneous improvisation within classical structures. The program includes works by Bach, Satie, Schubert, Schumann and Chopin, as well as a jazz standard interpreted through my classical lens - it is a knockout!
Ravel meets Gershwin
Paris, 1928: a young George Gershwin approaches the venerable French composer Maurice Ravel and humbly asks for composition lessons, to which the latter replies, “Why should you be a second-rate Ravel when you can be a first-rate Gershwin?”
This “classical-jazz” program celebrates the special musical bond between Maurice Ravel and George Gershwin: one influenced by the “new” jazz stylings from America and the other eager to join the ranks of the great classical composers. Together, through their mutual influence on one another’s work, they helped define the musical zeitgeist of 1920s Paris. This program traces the many similarities, moments of homage and musical “borrowings” that thread their way through such works as Ravel’s Concerto in G and Sonata for Violin and Piano (in a premiere arrangement for solo piano) and Gershwin’s An American in Paris, Concerto in F and Rhapsody In Blue. The big unanswered question that remains since the premier of these pieces: Is it classical, or Is it jazz? Can it not be both at once? Join Matt Herskowitz for this unique concert experience and find out for yourself!
Etudes en jazz is a new, cross-genre interpretation of the Chopin Etudes, infusing contemporary jazz language and grooves into the original pieces. In the tradition of Godowsky's "Etudes on the Etudes", I propose a series of “Jazz Etudes on the Etudes”, extending the challenges of Chopin's original Etudes by layering in new rhythmic and virtuosic demands in the jazz idiom. These new arrangements expound on and expand the technical challenges each etude poses, as well as provide a fun way for classical audiences to learn and absorb a variety of jazz styles within a familiar classical framework. While not straying too far from the original pieces, Etudes en Jazz sounds at once familiar and completely new.
Etude op. 10 no. 4, "Jazz Torrent" : https://vimeo.com/687188522
Etude op. 10 no. 3, 'Le Gospel de la Tristesse" : https://vimeo.com/662408938
Etude op. 25 no. 9, "Ragtime Butterfly" : https://vimeo.com/673595249