20:00 Uhr, St. Pigs Pub
Amina Figarova - piano and compositions
Wayne Escoffery - tenorsax
Alex Pope Norris - trumpet
Bart Platteau - flutes
Luques Curtis or Yasushi Nakamura - bass
Rudy Royston or Brian Richburg JR - drums
Amina Figarova was born in Baku, Azerbaijan, and as a child studied to be a classical concert pianist. Graduated from the Baku Conservatory as classical concert pianist. In 1990, she entered Rotterdam Conservatory (where she met Bart Platteau, a fellow student from Belgium) to pursue jazz, coming to the United States in 1992 to complete her formal education at Boston's Berklee College of Music. In 1998 she was invited to the Thelonious Monk Institute's summer jazz colony in Aspen, and after more than a decade of bookings in major U.S. jazz clubs, concert halls and festivals, the couple gained legal immigrant status in 2013. They currently live in Harlem, NY and tour constantly.
"Among the most important composers to come into jazz in the new millennium" - JazzTime
Hailing from Azerbaijan, the New York-based Amina Figarova is an internationally influenced-and recognized-composer, pianist, and bandleader. Those three roles come to the forefront in Figarova's sextets, bands with a remarkable chemistry that brings her detailed arrangements to life. Every member of the group stands out as a first-rate individual, but their dedication to Figarova's eclectic and powerful compositions gives this group its depth of feeling and elite status. The Amina Figarova Sextet has been a hit at major festivals like the Newport Jazz Festival and New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival
With the release of "Road to the Sun", Amina Figarova is celebrating the 20th anniverssary of her band. In 1998, having a blast playing with a big band made up of students from Thelonius Monk's Institute of Jazz, outdoors, surrounded by the gorgeous mountains of Aspen Snow Mass, I was thinking how much I wanted to create a smaller band that would have the same power of a big band, but with so much more room in it for each musician to shine. Little did I know this was the beginning of a beautiful journey, one that continues to this day, in which every concert, every recording is another beginning, another thrill, another joy. I conceived of the band as a septet 20 years ago, and later refined it to a sextet in 2005. And many of the most incredible musicians in the world have been a part of this band and of my band family. It is so much fun writing for them, trying out different directions, different unknowns; this continuous journey an exquisite adventure: enlightening, illuminating, beautiful, easy and challenging at the same time.
"...Many of the strongest composer-arranger-orchestra leaders in jazz are women. Think Toshiko Akiyoshi, Carla Bley, Maria Schneider. Amina Figarova has a chance to join their company. All she needs is an orchestra. Figarova's compositions for small ensemble have been brilliant since at least 2005, when she released September Suite, still the deepest, most powerful jazz response to the events of 9/11..." by Thomas Conrad for Stereophile Magazine