Laszlo Gardony Trio & Christian Artmann Quartet To Perform Live At Regattabar This June

The group will take the stage at Regattabar a double bill on Saturday, June 29.

By: Apr. 22, 2024
Laszlo Gardony Trio & Christian Artmann Quartet To Perform Live At Regattabar This June
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Internationally acclaimed artists pianist/composer Laszlo Gardony and flutist/composer Christian Artmann bring their jazz ensembles to Regattabar, Charles Hotel, 1 Bennett St., Cambridge for a double bill on Saturday, June 29.

Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. concert are $15-$35. For information visit regattabarjazz.com.

Gardony and his trio with bassist John Lockwood and drummer Yoron Israel perform new original compositions, personal takes on standards, improvisations, and music from the trio's recent Sunnyside Records recording Close Connection, which earned broad critical acclaim including a 4-star review in DownBeat. One of the most expressive and technically skilled pianists working in jazz today, Gardony is “a formidable improviser who lives in the moment,” (JazzTimes). He has performed in 27 countries and released 13 albums on the Sunnyside, Antilles and Avenue Jazz labels. Close Connection, Gardony's 14th album as a leader released December 2, 2022, finds him addressing his own roots, specifically folk music elements from Central Europe (a quality he shares with Béla Bartók, whose great appreciation for folk tunes of Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria and Slovakia informed his work).

The second set features fellow Sunnyside artist Artmann and his quartet with Gardony, Lockwood, and Israel playing music from his new album The Middle of Life. Their performance features vocalist Elena McEntire. The album was inspired by Artmann's family and his Buddhist faith.

About the Artists

Internationally acclaimed Boston-based jazz pianist and composer Laszlo Gardony is one of the most expressive and technically skilled pianists working in jazz today. “A formidable improviser who lives in the moment,” according to JazzTimes, Gardony has performed in 27 countries and released 14 albums as a leader: 11 on the Sunnyside label, two on Antilles and one on Avenue Jazz. Winner of the Great American Jazz Piano Competition, he has been noted for his “fluid pianism” by The New York Times, praised by JazzTimes for his “incredible technique spread over a highly personal harmonic language,” lauded by The Boston Phoenix for his “accessible lyricism and subtle complexities” and celebrated by the UK's Jazzwise as a “fine pianist who has mastered the sound of surprise” and hailed by Cadence as a pianist deserving of wider recognition. And as DownBeat put it: “No matter how busy Gardony becomes, there's a stillness at the center of his music, a distinctive amalgam of central European folk strains, majestic classic piano and improvisational fearlessness.” The legendary Dave Brubeck also called him “a great pianist.

A professor in the piano department at Berklee College of Music since 1987, as well as a faculty member at Harvard University's Jazz Combo Initiative program, Gardony has performed and/or recorded with artists including Dave Holland, Miroslav Vitous, Bob Moses, Mick Goodrick, Yoron Israel, John Lockwood, Jamey Haddad, David “Fathead” Newman, Randy Brecker, Dave Liebman, Eddie Gomez, Bill Pierce, Don Braden and Stan Strickland.

Born in Budapest, Hungary, Gardony showed an early aptitude on the piano and soon 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,” he recalled. “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 (majoring in mathematics and physics), Gardony became one of Europe's most sought-after accompanists. Possessing a powerful sense of swing, a strong feel for the blues and a firm command of post-bop vocabulary, he gained invaluable insights by sharing festival stages with acts like Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers and Abdullah Ibrahim. After several years on the road as a sideman, Gardony decided he needed to deepen his knowledge of jazz. A full scholarship to Berklee brought him to the United States in 1983, and a faculty position at the school upon graduation kept him in Boston. He made his U.S. recording debut with the acclaimed 1988 album The Secret (Antilles), featuring Czech bass great Miroslav Vitous and drummer Ian Froman. But it was his first-place win the following year at the Great American Jazz Piano Competition that catapulted him into the national spotlight.    
Called a “composer with great vision” by All About Jazz and praised for his “stunning virtuosity by JazzTimes, flutist/composer Christian Artmann is passionate about bridging musical boundaries and creating space for dialogue and understanding. Having grown up immersed in classical music in Germany Austria, Artmann was invited to the Aspen Music Festival as a teenager where he performed with the Aspen Festival Orchestra under world-renowned conductors Claudio Scimone and Lawrence Foster and also gave solo recitals of Debussy, Hindemith, and Bartok. Increasingly fascinated with composition and improvisation, he realized that jazz was his true calling. Following studies at Berklee College of Music, Artmann moved to New York where he released three recordings as a leader to critical acclaim. Now residing in the Bay Area, Artmann released his latest album The Middle of Life in 2023 featuring “clever, evocative themes” and a sound which “conjures up the magic of Chick Corea's first Return to Forever band” (JazzThetik, Germany). Artmann's approach to the flute has been called “a model of what is possible with jazz flute” (The Flutist Quarterly), and praised for its “fluid technique” (Jazziz) and “the most beautiful, pure flute sound one could ever wish for” (JazzThetik Germany).




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