Guitarist, performer, composer.
Marcin Olak is one the most interesting Polish jazz guitar players. He is one of the few who
can play modern jazz on classical and acoustic guitars, using the specific sound and
articulation possibilities of those instruments; sometimes he also plays electric guitar. He
moves between various styles: jazz, classical and contemporary, from fully composed
pieces to improvised music. Marcin Olak performs solo and with various bands: from free-
jazz combos, through classical guitar ensembles, to the symphony orchestra. His own
project, Marcin Olak Trio, is particularly noteworthy.
Marcin Olak played at some of the most important Polish guitar and jazz festivals, such as:
Warsaw Summer Jazz Days (2008), Warsaw Autumn (2007, 2009), Jazz na Buduku (2006,
2008), Jazz w Ruinach (2007), Guitar City (2005, 2008), Jazz Juniors (2005), Warsaw
Underground Jazz (2003) and many more. The Warsaw Guitar Festival in 2008 seems
particularly worth mentioning, as Marcin’s own concerto for jazz guitar trio and orchestra
was performed there for the first time. Marcin played on the most important stages in
Poland, including the National Philharmonic Hall in Warsaw and the Witold Lutosławski
Concert Studio of the Polish Radio. He has recorded for Polish radio and TV on numerous
occasions. He doesn’t avoid jazz clubs though.
Marcin graduated from the Fryderyk Chopin Academy of Music in Warsaw (PL) in classical
guitar. He took part in numerous master classes with classical guitarists (like David Russell
and Jorge Cardoso) and jazz performers (like Ralph Towner and Scott Henderson). Marcin’s
musical skills have been appreciated by Polish guitarists. He has been asked to write
workshops on jazz improvisation and harmony for one of the most important Polish guitar
magazines, Top Guitar.