Schubert Club & Walker West Music Academy present this FREE workshop that is a one-of-a-kind opportunity for students to explore jazz piano, meet peers with similar interests, and learn from renowned jazz pianists from the Twin Cities! Designed for middle and high school students that can read music and have a minimum of 1 year of piano experience, students will work on playing jazz piano in small groups with clinicians. Students with no jazz experience whatsoever to students with advanced jazz experience are encouraged to attend, and will be placed in groups based on ability.
Four scholarships of $300 each will be awarded for lessons with one of our local piano clinicians. Scholarships are provided by endowments to Schubert Club from the families of Marie Froehlich, Jane Matteson and David Paulus. Scholarship winners will be announced online after the workshop.
Minneapolis-based jazz pianist and composer Mary Louise Knutson has been called “one of the most exciting and innovative artists to happen to jazz piano in quite some time.” Her warm, inviting tone, broad range of emotional expression, and distinctive compositions have brought her much recognition on the national music scene. Knutson’s debut jazz trio CD, Call Me When You Get There, charted in JazzWeek’s Top 50, earning her the award for Top New Jazz Instrumentalist and her latest jazz trio CD, In the Bubble, made JazzWeek’s Top 10 and stayed in the Top 50 for 19 consecutive weeks. In 2005, she was a Finalist in the Kennedy Center’s Women in Jazz International Pianist Competition and in 2006, Knutson was a Minnesota Music Awards nominee for both Jazz Artist of the Year and Pianist of the Year.
Kavyesh Kaviraj is a pianist, composer and arranger from India. Although primarily a jazz pianist, he is known for his versatility as a musician; thanks to his experience in different musical climates he is closely involved with settings of many different genres and styles.
Kavyesh was introduced to music at a very young age; born into a musical family, he started playing the piano at the age of 2, and has since been garnering experience towards an expansive international career.
Kavyesh is also a passionate music educator, with experience as a private instructor and experience as an educator in music academies and public schools alike, and enjoys leading jazz workshops and teaching music classes for children and youth. His compositions and arrangements for various ensembles and configurations have been featured on radio, TV and collaborative exhibitions.
Bryan Nichols is a pianist, composer, and educator based in Minneapolis. Often found playing jazz and improvised music, but at home in a variety of musical worlds, he leads and composes for his own trio, quintet, and nonet in addition to performing, recording, and touring with forward-thinking artists like Nicole Mitchell, Ron Miles, and Olga Bell, and groups like the Gang Font, Dead Man Winter, and Halloween, Alaska. He has taught jazz piano at MacPhail Center for Music, University of Minnesota – Morris, and University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire, while presenting clinics and masterclasses at a variety of colleges and high schools around the midwest.
Bryan has performed at most music venues in the Twin Cities and Chicago (where he lived from 2001-2005,) in addition to international festivals including Sons d’Hiver (Paris, France) and Kerava Jazz Festival (Kerava, Finland) and local and regional festivals including the Chicago Jazz Festival and the Minnesota Sur Seine Festival. He’s been a regular performer on series like SPCO’s Liquid Music, and Orchestra Hall’s Atrium Jazz Series. Bryan appears on recent recordings by Zacc Harris, MANCRUSH, Molly Dean, Dead Man Winter, Gang Font, Kelly Rossum, and many more. His most recent album, a solo piano endeavor entitled Looking North, was released in May 2016 on Shifting Paradigm Records.
Biography coming soon!