Friesen & Martin will present work from a forthcoming CD, “A Perfect Sunday,” and will also collaborate with Jacob Szekely as they reveal the cello’s versatility in jazz, folk, and world music.
Joel A. Martin is the creator of Jazzical®, a marriage of classical and jazz. He is an award-winning concert and jazz pianist who has performed his innovative Jazzical compositions as well as jazz and classical pieces both domestically and abroad, having played in Paris, London, Finland, Germany, Switzerland, Japan, Russia and Kyrgyzstan. Joel has performed as soloist with the New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony, and Delaware Symphony; the Springfield Symphony (MA) and Hartford Symphony Orchestras premiering Jazzical: Dueling Orchestras. He was the youngest competitor in the 1985 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. He has been featured on BET (Black Entertainment Television); BET on Jazz,"NBC-TV and performed his original Jazzical compositions at the Savannah Music Festival, Guggenheim Museum, Lincoln Center, Snug Harbor, Kennedy Center, and the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival.
Born in Brooklyn New York in 1979, Jacob Szekely grew up in a musical family where his talent was recognized early on. Jacob discovered Jazz when he was accepted to study classical cello performance at the prestigious Interlochen Arts Academy, and thereafter began leading a musical double life with traditional classical performance and developing a completely new language on his instrument. By the time Jacob arrived in Los Angeles for his masters degree at USC, he had already launched headlong into his professional career. In addition to his busy schedule as a Los Angeles studio musician, Jacob performs regularly as a sideman with numerous bands and singe/songwriters in LA including the acoustic rock band Uncle Daddy. Szekely is also active as a composer and arranger and has collaborated with a wide range of artists and ensembles from string quartets and world music groups to commissions for chamber orchestra and children’s choir.
Four-time Grammy winner Eugene Friesen is active internationally as a cellist, composer, conductor and teacher. He has worked and recorded with such diverse artists as Dave Brubeck, Toots Thielemans, Betty Buckley, Will Ackerman, Joe Lovano and Dream Theater, and has been featured in concerts all over the world with the Paul Winter Consort, with Trio Globo (Friesen, Howard Levy and Glen Velez), and in his popular CelloMan performances for children and families. A pioneer in the teaching of improvisation to classically trained musicians, Eugene has led workshops throughout North America and around the world. His book, Improvisation for Classically Trained Musicians (Berklee Press) was published in 2012. He is an artist-in-residence at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City, and on the faculty of the Berklee College of Music in Boston.