Sarah is thrilled to host this series at the Port Theatre of conceptually innovative chamber music performances where she collaborates with special guests: Ariel Barnes (cello), François Houle (clarinet), Anne Grimm (soprano), Søren Bebe (jazz piano), Ann Elliott-Goldschmid (violin), plus a solo performance in October. Join us for coffee, treats, and a wonderful start to your morning.
The fifth season of Classical Coffee Concerts continues with Danish jazz pianist Søren Bebe. Søren and Sarah have put together a "Jazsical" programme of jazz and classical gems entitled "In Pursuit of Beauty."
Jazz Duet: Toccata - Lars Danielsson
Bach: G major French Suite - Selected movements
Bebe: Improvisation on a Bach Sarabande
Bebe: Tango For T
Poulenc: 2 Improvisations
Gershwin: The Man I Love
Manuel de Falla: Ritual Fire Dance
Bebe: Haarlem Landscape
Rachmaninov: Moments Musicaux in D-flat
Jazz duet: based on Danish folksong “Drømte Mig en Drøm i Nat”
A leading pianist on the European jazz and contemporary music scene, Copenhagen-based Søren Bebe is most often compared to fellow Scandinavians, Tord Gustavsen and the late Esbjörn Svensson. Ask Søren who has influenced him and the names that come up are likely to include Oscar Peterson, then Keith Jarrett and, more recently, Aaron Parks. As for non-pianists, his number one would be Kenny Wheeler. But, ultimately, Søren’s delicacy of touch – both as a composer and pianist – is, of course, his own.
Says the US jazz journal, All About Jazz: “Bebe certainly belongs to the tradition of lyrical pianists that goes from Erroll Garner and Bill Evans through Keith Jarrett. What Bebe adds to the lyrical tradition of the piano is a sense of folk-like simplicity, with mourning melodies blossoming like shy night-flowers”
Søren’s recording catalogue to date includes four albums with the Søren Bebe Trio, the most recent of which is the critically acclaimed Eva (2013), featuring US bass player Marc Johnson (part of Bill Evans’ final trio line-up).
The reaction of the Korean journal, Jazzpeople, sums up the enthusiastic reception that Eva has been getting: “There is an elegant and sensitive softness that comes along with a dazzling transparency and touches the heart”.
Released in October 2014, Søren’s latest disc is Gone, which is a collaboration with trumpeter Jakob Buchanan and Kasper Tagel on bass – in an ensemble known as BeBuTa – that also features drummer and percussionist Helge Andreas Norbakken and Julian Arguelles on saxophone. Work has now started on a fifth Søren Bebe Trio album, scheduled for release in 2016.
Søren’s busy touring schedule has included most of Europe, as well as the US, China, Korea, Japan, Indonesia, Brazil and Morocco. Along the way, he’s performed at international jazz festivals like Hong Kong, Jarasum (in Korea) and SXSW (South By Southwest) in Austin, Texas.
Søren had an especially varied and dynamic series of performances in 2014. Highlights included his first solo concerts outside Denmark as part of the 19th International Festival of Jazz Piano in Prague; playing alongside Timo Lassy, Magnus Lindgren and Nils-Petter Molvær at the Java Jazz Festival in Jakarta; an appearance with the Blue House Jazz Orchestra at Stockholm’s Konserthus; and shows at the Copenhagen Jazz Festival with Cæcilie Norby, Lars Danielsson, Marilyn Mazur and Sebastian Studnitzky. Søren also toured Japan with the Sidsel Storm Quintet, not to mention performing concerts with singer Katrine Madsen in support of her 2014 album, Katrine. 2015 is looking equally action-packed, and includes Søren Bebe Trio’s selection for the prestigious Danish Vibes programme, as well as a performance at the international jazz trade fair, jazzahead!, in the German city of Bremen.
Born in the Danish city of Odense in 1975, Søren had his first piano lesson at the age of eight. In 2004, after seven years of study with, among others, the highly respected Swedish jazz pianist Lars Jansson, Søren graduated from the Royal Academy of Music in Aarhus (Denmark) with an advanced postgraduate diploma in music for exceptional soloists.