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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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Nov. 4: Brockowitz Duo to Perform on Piano, Violin

Concert will be held in Halling Recital Hall.

2017-11-06
Minnesota State University, Mankato Department of Music News Release, 10-17-2017

MANKATO, Minn. – The Brockowitz Duo featuring Phil Markowitz, piano, and Zach Brock, violin, will perform Saturday, Nov. 4 in Minnesota State University, Mankato's Elias J. Halling Recital Hall of the Earley Center for Performing Arts, 320 Maywood Ave. The performance in funded through the Nadine B. Andreas Visiting Artist Endowment.

Phil Markowitz (Chet Baker, Toots Thielemans) and Zach Brock (Snarky Puppy, Stanley Clarke) have created new repertoire for piano and violin that draws on the traditions of jazz, contemporary classical, and the “roots” music of their respective backgrounds. It cuts across genres to create new environments for contemporary and improvisational chamber music.

The first iteration of this new direction appeared on the 2014 release, “Perpetuity,” and they have been expanding their duo repertoire ever since. While an affinity for American jazz is front and center, Brock’s Appalachian roots and Markowitz’s Eastern European ancestry have sown deep threads that run through the new compositions.

The audience will hear an unorthodox combination of post-Romantic, serialist, and jazz dialects fused with rhythms from West Africa, South America, and the Balkans.

Phil Markowitz (pictured above right), 30-plus year veteran of the International Jazz scene is dedicated to realizing the full potential of improvisational music within the jazz idiom. He performs original compositions, which range from hard-cutting chromaticism to the most lyrical post-romantic ballads. Inventive, virtuosic, and accessible, Markowitz presents a forward-looking vision for contemporary music.

His credentials span a cornucopia of jazz from the traditional to the avant-garde from his early associations with Chet Baker and Toots Thielemans, and through his respective 20- and 15-year affiliations with Bob Mintzer and David Liebman. Markowitz has received endowments and grants from The Howard Foundation, Chamber Music America, The Doris Duke Foundation, The National Endowment for the Arts and The New York Foundation for the Arts.

Heralded as “the pre-eminent improvising violinist of his generation,” Zach Brock (pictured at left) is a violinist and composer whose music draws on the traditions of jazz, classical, world, and popular music. Brock received his first Grammy Award in 2017 for his work on Snarky Puppy’s album “Culcha Vulcha,” and Downbeat Magazine named him the 'Rising Star Violinist' of 2013.

His acclaim as a bandleader has grown through appearances at venues such as Carnegie Hall and festivals like “Tudo é Jazz” in Brazil, while his reputation as a sideman has spread through his work with legendary bassist Stanley Clarke, contemporary instrumental super-group Snarky Puppy, and jazz masters Phil Markowitz and Dave Liebman.

Brock has made 10 recordings as a leader or co-leader and is the first violinist to record for the venerable Dutch jazz label Criss Cross. Brock has also represented the U.S. State Department as a Musical Ambassador in the Solomon Islands, has performed as a featured soloist for two Sundance Festival feature film scores and is currently an “Artist in Residence” at Temple University in Philadelphia.

Concert admission is $15 for community members and $13 for K-12 students and Minnesota State Mankato students with a valid MavCARD. Discount tickets are available online for University students. Advance purchase is encouraged. Those who wish to purchase tickets online should go to www.mnsu.edu/music. For more information, call the Performance Series office, (507) 389-5549.

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