Nikki Iles: Meditation and Collaboration

Bruce Lindsay By

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Iles' work diary is pleasingly full, with a varied selection of projects to add to her regular teaching schedule. "I'm recording with Kenny Wheeler. He's working on his 'Mirrors' suite with the London Vocal Project. Mark Lockheart and James Maddren, the drummer, are involved, too. The LVP is an amazing group. It's directed by Pete Churchill, my other half. He set it up after he left the Guildhall, where he'd taught for over 20 years, and its members come from the Guildhall and other London music colleges. The group has worked with Bobby McFerrin, Dame Cleo Laine and Cleo Laine. I'm also hoping to get Printmakers together for a new recording. I'm writing some educational texts for the Oxford University Press. There's also a project with Tina May and some classical musicians, based on songs from '20s and '30s Paris. That's at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield."

The Stan Sulzmann Big Band and the Karen Sharp Quartet are also benefiting from Iles' piano skills. Domestic life doesn't stop for Iles and Churchill either. "We've just moved house, so that's still taking up a lot of our time." As for the next album with Iles' name on the front, that might still be some way off, but the pianist is appropriately sanguine about the prospect. "It'll probably take me 10 years to do another album of my own. But that's fine."

Selected Discography

Nikki Iles/Rufus Reid/Jeff Williams, Hush (Basho Records, 2012)

Secret Quartet, Bloor Street (Edition Records, 2010)

Tina May, I Never Told You (33 Jazz, 2009)

Mike Walker, Madness And The Whole Thing There (Hidden Idiom, 2008)

Nikki Iles,
Everything I Love (Basho Records, 2004)

Tina May, Nikki Iles, Tony Coe, More Than You Know (33 Jazz, 2004)

Nikki Iles Quintet, Veils (Symbol Records, 2002)

Foolish Hearts, Snap (Room4Music, 1997)

Martin Speake and Nikki Iles, The Tan T'ien (FMR, 1997)

Anthony Braxton with the Creative Jazz Orchestra, Composition No. 175 & Composition No. 126: Trillium-Dialogues M (Leo Records, 1997)

Stan Sulzmann and Nikki Iles, Treasure Trove (ASC, 1996)

Photo Credits
Page 1, Rufus Reid: John Abbott
All Other Photos: Drew Gardner
About Nikki Iles
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