Argentine vocalist Sofia Koutsovitis' Group tonight @ Cornelia St. Cafe!


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Sofia Koutsovitis Group @ Cornelia Street Cafe
Thursday, October 27, 2005
10 PM (Gretchen Parlato appears at 8:30)

featuring: Sofia Koutsovitis, vocals; Dan Blake, soprano and tenor sax; Adam Schneit, alto sax /clarinet; Eric Bloom, trumpet; Leo Genovese, piano; Jorge Roeder, bass; Richie Barshay, drums; Jorge Perez Albela, percussion

“Sofia Koutsovitis is a remarkable singer. Her rich, warm alto is equally at home with quick latin rhythms and sensuous ballads.

Her sound appeals right to your heart, but her witty and intelligent interpretations and compositions will win your mind. A unique and wonderful talent.”

-Dominique Eade

The music of the Sofia Koutsovitis Group is grounded in South American rhythms like chacarera and zamba from Argentina, Afro-Peruvian festejo and lando, and various Brazilian genres, which it unites with the harmonic and melodic innovations of jazz in a pan-stylistic tapestry of sound.

Singing in Spanish, Portuguese, or English, Sofia Koutsovitis' voice simultaneously employs stylistic codes drawn from multiple sources. This cross pollination of musical traditions is reflected in her original compositions and arrangements of selections by eminent musical poets such as Silvio Rodriguez, Astor Piazolla, Paulinho da Viola, and Raul Carnota.

The ensemble produces a range of textures as diverse as the cultural roots of its members, an international cast that includes some of the most exiting young talent from North and South America. Argentine vocalist Sofia Koutsovitis has appeared as a leader at Washington D.C.'s esteemed Kennedy Center, Boston's historic Jordan Hall, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and top-tier jazz clubs like the Regattabar and Ryles. In 2004 she took part in the international 'Betty Carter Jazz Ahead' institute, a program designed to promote emerging jazz composers. After her professional singing debut at age 9 in the Teatro Colon Children's Choir, Sofia later became a member of the internationally renowned National Youth Choir of Argentina, taking part of seven tours to South America, Europe and the USA. In her hometown of Buenos Aires, she worked with several ensembles that specialized in different time periods in Classical music, ranging from Renaissance to Contemporary music. Sofia has performed in some of the most distinguished halls of Argentina such as the Teatro Colon, Buenos Aires Cathedral, Gran Rex Theatre and Recoleta Cultural Center. In 2001, she moved to Boston to pursue a Master's Degree in the Jazz Program at the New England Conservatory where she studied with jazz masters Danilo Perez, Dominique Eade, Charlie Banacos and Steve Lacy.

Peruvian bassist Jorge Roeder has worked in a variety of settings ranging from Classical, as assistant principal bassist of the Lima Philharmonic at age 21, to folkloric music and jazz (with jazz legend Roy Haynes, among others). Jorge Perez Albela, also hailing from Peru, has a wide-ranging experience in jazz and folkloric traditions from his country, having worked with legendary vocalists Eva Ayllon, Tania Libertad and Fabiola De La Cuba. Young drumming phenomenum Richie Barshay has been a member of Herbie Hancock's group since 2003. Rounding the rhythm section is Argentine pianist Leo Genovese, a Fresh Sound recording artist who tours Europe and South America regularly as part of several ensembles. The sounds of saxophonist Dan Blake, whom Dave Liebman has called “one of the most diverse and adventurous young players I have heard,” sure-toned saxophonist and clarinetist Adam Schneit, and Eric Bloom on trumpet, intermingle to create unexpected sonorities and flights of collective improvisation.

In truth, the only predictable feature in the playful music of the Sofia Koutsovitis Group may be its leader's search for change and surprise, a sonic discovery leading the listener to a very different place in each song. The group has been featured in numerous festivals and clubs in the North East area and several TV and radio shows such as WGBH's Eric in the evening. And this summer the group showcased music from an upcoming debut recording during a residency at the 2005 Aspen Jazz Academy, directed by Christian McBride.

Cornelia Street Cafe is located at:

29 Cornelia St.
New York, NY
$10 + 1 drink

This story appears courtesy of All About Jazz.
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