Akbank's Piano Days to start
Akbank’s Piano Days start with Nikolaj Hess on Nov. 12. The event will host world famous piano artists such as Jon Balke, Herman Fraanje, Jan Gunnar Hofman, Orçun Yıldıran. The event will continue until Nov. 28.This year, Akbank’s Piano Days start with Nikolaj Hess on Nov. 12. The event will host world famous piano artists such as Jon Balke, Herman Fraanje, Jan Gunnar Hofman, Orçun Yıldıran. The event will continue until Nov. 28. Award winning pianists like Hess will be on stage. Hess won the category for best European jazz piano player under 25 in the RAI competition in Rome and won the gold prize in “Berlingske Tidendes” competition of non-classical music in Copenhagen. Having graduated from Rhythmic Conservatory at 22, he was the first to get top grade 13 for his concert performance in piano, his major subject. He later studied in the U.S. with Richie Beirach, Danilo Perez and Gary Dial.
His latest works includes making music for and playing in Lars Von Triers multiple award winning movie “Melancholia,” as well as being the music director for the Reumert nominated Music/Dance show “Love Songs” by Tim Rushton, Caroline Henderson & Nikolaj Hess, and being the music director and co-composer for Østre Gasværks show “Jazz, Love and Henderson.” Furthermore, he has been touring extensively with his own projects and is working on the next Spacelab Acoustic Trio album, and on his NY Pianotriology. He is the leader, co-leader and member of several other groups like the NH Quartet, Funky Nacht Music and Hessismore.
Orçun Yıldıran will be on stage at the “Young Talents” event during Piano Days on Nov. 18. Yıldırsan is perceived as one of the most talented piano players, as he studied at Mimar Sinan University. He ranked the first in the national piano contest organized by Süreyya Opera in 2013. With the Symphony Orchestra of State Conservatory, Mimar Sinan University, he performed J. Haydn Re Major Piano Concerto and Bach’s Piano Concerto.
A piano master Jon Balke, who began composing for larger ensembles in 1982, first and foremost for Oslo 13, a “small” big band and has since composed works for the theatre and various chamber ensembles, in addition to big bands and jazz ensembles, such as Masqualero, Jon Balke & the Magnetic North Orchestra, and Batagraf takes the stage at Akbank Sanat on Nov. 21.
Balke’s activities in music have always been two-fold. On the one hand, there is a search for maximum spontaneity through establishing orchestras, which are increasingly based on pure improvisation, a development that has culminated in his very successful trio Jøkleba with Audun Kleive and Per Jørgensen (keys, percussion, and trumpet).
Jan Gunnar Hoff on stage
On the other hand, Jan Gunar Hoff will be on stage on Nov. 26. Hoff is one of Norway´s most experienced piano- and keyboard players, born in Bodø 1958. He performs extensively in band settings with artists like Mike Stern and Alex Acuña and with his new Hoff/Mazur/Henriksen/Jormin- quartet. Hoff also tours with a solo concept in Scandinavia, Russia and Asia. His solo piano album LIVING was released April 2013 on 2L. Hoff has worked extensively as a bandleader and jazz artist since 1992, developing a distinctive musical style. His band with leading Norwegian jazz performers Audun Kleive and Bjørn Kjellemyr had its breakthrough at Vossa Jazz 1995 and later played at the London Jazz festival, Molde Int. Jazz festival and several major festivals and venues in Scandinavia. In 2001 they collaborated with Pat Metheny in Molde, a concert that was highly acclaimed by its audience, as well as critics. On the same day, he will be giving a workshop master’s class at Akbank for those interested in piano.
The event will end with Pianist Harmen Fraanje who is perceived as one of the best piano players in the world. He played at the North Sea Festival with his quartet (Nelson Veras, Hein van de Geyn and Matthieu Chazarenc) and the Zapp String quartet (with Oene van Geel, Jasper le Clercq, Friedman Hitzer and Emile Visser).