Dainius Pulauskas – p
This trio is just beginning their creative path, having held just a couple of concerts. The musicians first met on stage two years ago in Dainius Pulauskas Acoustic Quintet, which the keyboardist, composer and group leader put together especially for the international interdisciplinary project The 3 Sounds of Komeda at the 2018 Vilnius Jazz Festival. Then their interpretation of the work of Krzysztof Komeda, the Polish jazz genius, fascinated the audience with the performers’ virtuosity and zeal.
Having tried various genres and collaborated with various partners in his work, Pulauskas has always felt the sentiments for the classical trio format, according to him, one of the most perfect forms of jazz expression. For twelve years he has been playing in the ensemble Baltic Jazz Trio with Estonian and Latvian jazz coryphées bassist Toivo Unt and drummer Maris Briezkalnis, has given dozens of concerts with them in various countries, and recorded two albums.
However, the distances between these musicians and their busy schedule do not allow the trio to play as often as they would like. So this year Dainius gathered his younger colleagues for his favourite line-up and already recorded an album of his compositions. This concert is a presentation of the aforementioned CD.
In addition to acoustic solo, trio and other ensemble music, the palette of works of Dainius Pulauskas, one of the most prominent Lithuanian jazz masters, includes symphonic jazz and works for the big band. He writes music for choirs, theatre performances and films, and is regularly involved in television projects as an arranger and performer.
The Estonian National Opera and Ballet Theatre produced a contemporary ballet based on Pulauskas’ original compositions. Furthermore, the musician represented Lithuania in a multinational composers’ collective – the mastermind of an anthem for the Europe Jazz Network (EJN). His music was featured in the Euroradio Jazz Orchestra’s live broadcast in European countries from Riga.
It is for his original compositions Dainius’ collectives garnered recognition. Birštonas Jazz 1996 hosted the debut of his first group, Dainius Pulauskas Quintet, which grew into Sextet – one of the leading and most widely internationally recognised Lithuanian jazz collectives. In 2001, the Sextet received “Gold Disc” awarded to the best musicians of the year by the Lithuanian Musicians’ Union. In 2004, the Lithuanian Institute presented the ensemble with “LT tapatybė” (LT Identity) award for international promulgation of Lithuanian jazz.
Since 2004, the Dainius Pulauskas Group (DPG) has become an umbrella-title for various jazz formations led by Pulauskas and performing exclusively his music. DPG has made Lithuania even more famous in the world: they have travelled to more than 150 festivals in 35 countries on four continents.
DPG was the first Lithuanian group to enter the stages of Malaysia, Indonesia, Republic of South Africa, Egypt, Ethiopia and South Korea. The group was applauded in prestigious Ottawa, London, Tokyo and Washington jazz festivals. In winter of this year DPG held the third grand tour of India, where it has appeared on almost all major jazz scenes.
The Best of 20 Years, the group’s ninth album, documents the group’s path, presents the DPG’s best compositions of all times. Maestro’s music can be heard on nineteen author CDs, two author DVDs and nine jazz collections.
In addition to jazz exponents, he collaborates with folk and academic music performers. In international projects Pulauskas has teamed up with the Latvian Radio Big Band, musicians from the USA, France, Israel, South Korea, Italy, Finland, Germany and Russia.
The keyboardist has given solo appearances in international jazz piano festivals in Liepaja and Prague, performed at the Lithuanian National Philharmonic. He has earned a number of awards: “Bravo” (1999) for the best Lithuanian jazz musician; Grand Prix for the best arrangement of Yesterday by Lennon and McCartney at the International Competition Yesterday Pärnu’99 (Estonia); Birštonas Jazz, Vilnius Jazz and Kaunas Jazz awards for contributions to Lithuanian jazz; was twice nominated for the Lithuanian National Culture and Art Prize.
Double bassist Arman Isojan studied the violin at the Stasys Šimkus Conservatoire in Klaipėda, later graduated from the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre as a double bassist.
The bassist started his professional career in Klaipėda – played in Klaipėda Music Theatre, Jurgis Barakauskas’ Dixieland, Kęstutis Sova’s Quintet. The musician has appeared in various projects, took part in almost all Lithuanian jazz festivals as well as Jazznica 2011 festival in Slovakia, and international project Divercities Grenoble 2012 in France.
In 2013, Arman earned a special prize at the Vilnius Jazz Young Power competition as a bassist of R.A.D.D. and Legentet, and as a member of R.A.D.D. claimed the Grand Prix.
Augustas Baronas started his career at a school age – with The Magic Time Orchestra big band he appeared in festivals in Lithuania, Latvia, Germany and Sweden.
After earning a Bachelor Degree from the Royal Conservatory of the Hague and a Master Degree from the Dutch Academy of Music in Amsterdam, the musician and his family returned to Lithuania.
Here he collaborates with the leading Lithuanian jazz musicians including Kęstutis Vaiginis, Dmitry Golovanov, Veronika Čičinskaitė-Golovanova, Leonardas Pilkauskas, Domas Aleksa, Dominykas Vyšniauskas and others. In his tours abroad he works with Italian saxophonist Claudio Jr De Rosa’s international jazz quartet. With it he appeared in Nord See Jazz, performed on prestigious jazz scenes in Umbria and elsewhere in Europe.
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