This Thursday, June 13, The Jazz Gallery is pleased to welcome pianist Theo Walentiny to our stage for two solo piano sets. A recent graduate of the New School, Walentiny has previously presented his own music at the Gallery with his septet and the collaborative Aurelia Trio. This past winter & spring, Walentiny lived in Hangzhou, China, playing six nights a week with Verso Doxa, a new quartet project led by drummer/composer Dré Hočevar.
Whether playing solo or with his larger working group, Walentiny takes an intersectional approach to improvisation, playing with multifaceted, large-scale forms and drawing from different musical traditions. In an interview with Jazz Speaks, Walentiny spoke about merging these practices in his work for the septet:
There’s this piece “Apprehension,” which starts out with a piano riff, or a duo with guitar, then a melody, and a form for soloing which can go almost anywhere. It’s not limited by the page. I’m focused on transitions between songs as well, and strive for a continuous set of music. I try to bridge the pieces with pairs of duos within the group. Horns might do a cadenza, there might be a short chorale, nothing too strict.
For this solo show, Walentiny will feature his interest in spontaneous development of long forms, evocative of Cecil Taylor and Paul Bley, as well as his rich harmonic palette, inspired by French classical composers form Ravel to Messiaen to Dutilleux. Don’t miss this young pianist challenge himself in this new, vulnerable format.
Pianist Theo Walentiny plays solo at The Jazz Gallery on Thursday, June 13, 2019. Sets are at 7:30 and 9:30 P.M. $15 general admission (FREE for members), $20 reserved cabaret seating ($10 for members) for each set. Purchase tickets here.