Thursday, December 31, 2009

GigTips: January 2010

And so here we are again, at the start of another year. We at Prague Jazz hope that all our readers had a good time over the Christmas season, welcomed in 2010 with good company, and are now ready for another year of jazz. The Czech jazz scene remains one of the most vibrant in Europe, with a combination of exciting young artists who are finding their way to excellence and more established names who are truly world class writers and players. There were many great concerts in 2009 and there is no reason to suspect that 2010 is going to be any different. Here is our selection of what's hot and cool (you know what we mean) in January...

For those of you interested in hearing Infinite Quintet perform material from their Speak Slowly album (reviewed on PJ last week) they will be at AghaRTA Jazz Centrum on 22/1. Also at AghaRTA this month is Hammond organist Ondřej Pivec with his Organic Quartet. It is not as easy as it used to be to see Ondřej in Prague because he now spends a considerable amount of time in New York City. On this tour he will also be appearing with saxophonist Petr Kalfus (8/1) and with the Bucinatores Big Band (19/1). Both of these concerts will be at Jazz Dock. His full schedule is shown below:

It is also possible to see the other great key basher called Ondřej in January, again at AghaRTA. Ondřej Kabrna will be appearing there with his own band, the groovy Ondřej Kabrna Powerplay Trio (5/1), as well as in his usual role of pianist and keyboard player in the Luboš Andršt Group (12, 13/1).

At U Malého Glena in January there is a chance to catch the excellent Beata Hlavenková and her Trio on 23/1. She is one of the most interesting young Czech pianists, and will be playing material from her recent Joy for Joel album.

In a break from tradition this month we are actually going to recommend two gigs at Reduta. On 3/1 the fabulous Elena Sonenshine will be there. She's a powerful singer with a strong stage presence, backed up by a tight band. If you're in the mood for some vocal jazz then you could do a lot worse. Also appearing at Reduta will be the evergreen Emil Viklický Trio (14/1). What he can't do with a piano is probably not worth doing. Both Elena and Emil will also be appearing at USP Jazz Lounge on 9/1 and 26/1 respectively.

As ever this is just a very small selection of the gigs taking place. If you are interested in finding out more please follow the links to the artist and venue websites for full schedules. Remember to book your table in advance if you want to be sure of sitting near the front, and if you do sit near the front why not (as a late Christmas present to the musicians) refrain from talking all through the performance and firing your flashgun in their faces. And please, if you remember, do tell the club that you saw the gig mentioned here.

Best wishes for 2010 from all at Prague Jazz HQ!

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