Adam Makowicz, the internationally acclaimed jazz pianist who has been a soloist with symphony orchestras and shared the stage with America's jazz greats, will perform at 8 p.m. Friday, May 12, at the Eastman School of Music's Kilbourn Hall.
Makowicz's program of works by Duke Ellington, George Gershwin, Cole Porter, and Frederic Chopin will display his versatility and his embrace of many musical styles. He has recorded more than 30 albums and CDs of his own, beyond the dozens with other jazz musicians—some live on stage.
Tickets for his appearance, which is sponsored by the Skalny Center for Polish and Central European Studies at the University of Rochester, are $15, $20, and $25 with a $5 discount for University of Rochester students. A native of Poland, Makowicz (pronounced Ma-KO-vitch) has lived in New York City for 30 years, but returns annually to perform in his homeland.
Critics have applauded his extraordinary technical virtuosity that builds bridges between classical music and jazz, as in the CD Reflections on Chopin (2003), and his original compositions in both Songs for Manhattan (2003), and his latest release, From My Field (2005). Many have described him as "magical" at the keyboard, and Jim Fusilli of the Wall Street Journal summarized his work this way: "Adam Makowicz has been praised by Benny Goodman, compared with Art Tatum, Erroll Garner and Teddy Wilson, honored by jazz publications and toasted all over Europe as a genius. Mr. Makowicz's fiery style, firm chording, and rapid, Tatumesque right hand phrasing make him more than deserving of the accolades he has received."
Makowicz has worked with some of the most famous musicians and vocalists in jazz, such as Herbie Hancock, Earl Hines, Freddie Hubbard, Sarah Vaughan, and George Shearing. He also continues his bond with orchestras and has played as a guest soloist with the National Symphony in Washington, the London Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Moscow Symphony Orchestra, and the Warsaw Philharmonic, among others.
His Rochester program also will include works by American composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein, and Makowicz's own compositions. A reception will follow the concert in the Cominsky Promenade. Ticket information is available at www.rochester.edu/college/psc/CPCES/skalnyevents.htm, or by calling the Skalny Center at (585) 275-9898 or the RPO Box Office at (585) 454-2100.