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2016  FESTIVAL

Jazz Trio - New Trio

Drummer, composer, educator and bandleader Peter Erskine formed his New Trio in 2010 to create music in the classic piano trio format while using the electric bass as played by his nephew Damian Erskine. The New Trio’s pianist and arranger is Vardan Ovsepian. The group has played in the USA, Central & South America plus China. Their first album “Joy Luck Club” received excellent reviews and is very popular with fans.

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Peter Erskine is known for his versatility and love of working in different musical contexts. He appears on over 600 albums and film scores , and has won two Grammy Awards , plus an Honorary Doctorate from the Berklee School of Music (1992) . Films where Peter's drumming can be heard include Memoirs of a Geisha, the new Pink Panther films and all three of the Austin Powers movies, plus the title music of the Steven Spielberg/John Williams collaboration "The Adventures of Tintin".

 

• 50 albums have been released under his own name or as co-leader

 

• Premiered the double percussion concerto at the BBC Proms with Andrew Davis conducting

 

• 'Best Jazz Drummer of the Year' 10 times  by the readers of Modern Drummer Magazine

 

• 2 Grammy Award : "8.30", "Some Skunj Funk"

 

• Owner of the record label "Fuzzy Music"

 

• Professor of Practice and Director of Drumset Studies at the Thornton School of Music, University of

Southern California

Keyboardist - Vardan Ovsepian

Vardan Ovsepian is an Armenia-born pianist/composer whose studies include Yerevan State Conservatory, Estonian Music Academy, Helsinki Jazz Conservatory and Berklee College of Music. He performs solo as well as with artists such as Mick Goodrick, Peter Erskine and Jerry Bergonzi. 

 

•In addition to teaching at The Musical Suite in Newburyport, MA, he has performed and taught master classes at Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival, Maine Jazz Camp, Towson University, Susquehanna University, Bucknell University, Wheeler School, Estonian Music Academy, Swarnabhoomi Academy of Music and the California Institute of the Arts.

 

•Vardan has released 5 CDs with “Fresh Sound New Talent” label, plus independent releases of VOCE - Vardan Ovsepian Chamber Ensemble (2006 and 2013).

 

•Recent works also include a publication of a book “Mirror Exercises,” the release of Peter Erskine’s New Trio album “Joy Luck,” and several duo/trio albums. Vardan currently resides in Los Angeles.

 

Bassist - Damian Erskine

Damian Erskine is known for his ability to fit into any musical situation, extraordinary reading and improvising skills as well as being an educator and columnist. 

 

• Has played in the studio or on the stage with: Peter Erskine, Gino Vannelli, The Jaco Pastorius Big Band, Les McCann, Javon Jackson, Jeff Lorber, The Buddy Rich Alumni All-Star Band and many others as well as being featured on the GospelChops.com “Shed Sessionz Vol. 1” DVD.

 

• Damian is an adjunct professor at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon. In addition, he regularly teaches abroad with JAE (Jazz Education Abroad) in Shanghai, Beijing and Bangkok

 

• Written for Bass Player Magazine, Bass Musician Magazine, as well as continuing to maintain a popular weekly column at NoTreble.com.

 

• Authored two books, “Right Hand Drive” and “The Improvisor’s Path.”

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