Live jazz, artists, venues and education in Leicester
Jazz pianist/composer Kate Williams was born in London into a musical family (her father is the guitarist John Williams, her mother a classical pianist). A recipient of the John Dankworth Award For Talent Deserving Wider Recognition, she has gained a distinctive reputation as both a writer and performer.
She has released several previous CDs, each one to critical acclaim, including 'Made Up' (with her septet) and 'Smoke And Mirrors' (with tenor legend Bobby Wellins). Both were in Mojo magazine's top ten jazz albums in 2011 and 2012 respectively. Her msot recent CD (Uune 2019) with Georgia Mancia called Finding Home is a collection of songs, both original and covers, newly arranged for voice, jazz trio, and string quartet and featuring guest John Williams on guitar for 2 tracks
She was featured at the Pizza Express Steinway 2-Piano Festival in 2010, 2011 and 2013 (with Robin Aspland and Nikki Iles respectively), with two of the concerts being broadcast on Radio 3’s Jazz Line Up.
In March 2014, she and conductor William Goodchild co-founded Interplay Series: Bill Evans And The Impressionists, a project featuring new arrangements of Bill Evans tunes alongside works by Ravel and Debussy for trio and orchestra. The first two performances were at the Bristol International Jazz Festival and the Guildhall Jazz Festival.www.interplayseries.com
Her septet CD Atlas And Vulcana is a further reflection of her colourful originality as a pianist/composer/arranger. With pieces for trio, quartet and septet, this is an album of contrasts which features some of the finest musicians on the UK jazz scene.
"British pianist/composer Kate Williams makes the kind of jazz albums few younger players attempt these days, let alone pull off with such aplomb – full of graceful storytelling themes and uptempo swing, delicate piano breaks glowing with a Bill Evans hue, bebop horn solos over nimble walking grooves. ....This is an elegant set of originals for her classy septet ... Williams’s lyricism, polish and subtle touch make this one of her most accomplished and personal ventures."
John Fordham, The Guardian, November 2014
Her most recent CD Four Plus Three features a collaboration between trio and string quartet (see Four Plus Three page).
She is a member of Chris Biscoe’s Mingus Moves, The Pete Hurt Jazz Orchestra, has recorded with vocalists Georgia Mancio (for whom she has also composed and arranged) and Juliet Kelly, as well as performing with many other leading UK artists including Anita Wardell, Tina May, Henry Lowther, Jim Mullen, John Etheridge, Julian Siegel, Tim Whitehead and Karen Sharp.
Kate is a founder member of Way Out West, a collective of jazz musicians based in West London which has been programming weekly gigs for over ten years. Other members include Tim Whitehead, Tony Woods, Chris Biscoe, Pete Hurt, Emily Saunders, Gary Willcox, Nette Robinson, Mike Outram and Tony Kinsey.
She is also an experienced educator and is currently teaching on the jazz degree courses at the Guildhall School of Music And Drama, and Middlesex University.
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