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Evan Blair Whitfield

Evan Whitfield is a pianist, keyboardist and composer of styles ranging from jazz to experimental new-age to contemporary improvisation. Evan began his musical education at the age of seven, studying classical piano and brass. Born in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, Evan was raised in a musical family from the very beginning and remembers listening to Vivaldi’s The Seasons, The Beatles‘ album Sergeant Pepper‘s Lonely Hearts Club Band, Glen Gould playing Bach, and attending Kenny Rogers concerts. As soon as he was proficient at the early stages of classical piano, he chose to study another instrument, the tuba. Thereafter his musical training developed with the repertoire of Bach, Beethoven, Schubert, Debussy, and the English Renaissance composers such as Dunstable and Purcell. As well as performing recitals at churches and schools, Evan studied with members of the Niagara Symphony Orchestra and won several International Royal Conservatory competitions. After fifteen years of living in Ontario, Canada, Evan emigrated with his family to the United States of America.

After moving to the United States, Evan gave piano recitals in the Southeastern United States while finishing his BM studies at Virginia Commonwealth University. During this time Evan traveled to Rome, Italy, performing with the Rome Festival Orchestra, and in his last year of graduation, Evan won first prize in the university’s orchestra concerto competition, playing Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 1 with the VCU Orchestra. After completing his studies at VCU, he realized that he was even more talented at improvisation, and after moving to Boston, Massachusetts he began studies at The New England Conservatory of Music’s Graduate Contemporary Improvisation program in Boston, MA. At the New England Conservatory of Music, Evan studied with some of the jazz piano greats such as Paul Bley, Ran Blake, Charlie Banacos, Fred Hersch, and disciples of Jaki Byard. During this time Evan studied the great American masters such as Charles Ives and Keith Jarrett, and practiced his art in jazz trios at clubs and art galleries throughout Boston. Soon after Evan was asked to perform at various clubs and concert halls in the New England area such as The Zeitgeist Gallery, Jordan Hall in Boston, and The Knitting Factory, NYC. He has also created and performed in a multimedia performance for Mobius Artist Studios, Boston. As well as performing and studying around Boston, Evan worked as a music director for several college productions, including the University of Massachusetts 2000 production of Steven Schwartz’s Working. After graduating in the summer of 2001 from The New England Conservatory of Music, Evan was hired as a music teacher for the Dublin Private Preparatory School in Dublin, NH. During this time Evan continued to develop his improvising and composition concept with a French improvising violist, Frederic Viger.

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