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Made in Prague: New Czech Jazz 2012 at the Spice of Life

Made in Prague, the first ever Czech jazz presentation in London, is an exciting series of three Czech jazz nights at the Spice of Life club introducing the best of young Czech jazz musicians to the UK. Embracing experimentation but schooled in tradition and often studying abroad, the new generation of leading Czech jazz musicians originating from the hotbed of Prague jazz presents their exhilarating take on contemporary jazz.

Thu 1 November, 8 pm Czech / UK Jazz Night: Najponk Trio
Fri 16 November, 8 pm London Jazz Festival: Tomáš Liška Trio
Thu 22 November, 8 pm Czech Jazz Night – Libor Šmoldas Quartet

The Spice of Life, 6 Moor St, Soho, London W1D 5NA
Doors open at 6 pm
Admission: £10/£8 (concs., advance)
see www.czechcentre.org.uk for details

The opening night will feature the Najponk Trio as they launch The Real Deal, their new CD of jazz standards. The leading Czech jazz pianist Najponk has performed all over the world with the likes of Janusz Muniak, Dave Liebman, Piotr Baron, Osian Roberts and George Mraz.  Both as a soloist and in his trio, Najponk has featured at jazz festivals from Novosibirsk to Cheltenham, and has also played at the prestigious A Trane Jazz Club in Berlin. Rooted in classical jazz – swinging rhythm and blues, Najponk, considered one of the greatest Czech connoisseurs of the genre, reinterprets jazz classics with virtuosity and enthusiasm and builds on the best of jazz traditions with his own compositions. With UK guests Matt Fishwick (drums) and Andy Robb (bass). While in London Najponk will also accompany the screening of the Czech silent film classic The Organist of St Vitus’Cathedral, providing a fresh take on live film music and bringing contemporary jazz themes to 1929 melodrama.(Fri 2 November, 6 pm at the Barbican)

The second concert, part of the London Jazz Festival, features the Tomas Liska Trio. The leading Czech bassist Tomas Liska, who has won the International Jazz Competition at Getxo and Best Bassist at the international competition in Hoeilaart, Belgium. He took master classes with American players Joey DeFrancesco, Benny Golson, Bobby Durham, Jimmy Cobb, Alberto Marsico and Buster Williams and is now finishing his Masters at the prestigious Jazz Institute, Berlin. Together with pianist Vit Kristan and acoustic guitarist virtuoso David Doruzka, Liska will perform compositions from their project Invisible World which balances on the edge of improvisation, jazz and classical producing an intimate acoustic sound built on the interpretational depth of their music.


The third night of the series belongs to Libor Smoldas, Czech Music Academy winner and an outstanding jazz guitarist and composer who studied in New York with Paul Bollenback, Lage Lund, Mike Moreno, Ben Monder, Steve Cardenas and Peter Bernstein. He co-founded The Organic Quartet and later released his well received debut album On the playground.  His recording In New York On Time with guest musicians George Mráz, Jeff Ballard and Sam Yahel was followed by 18 Days 2000 Miles reflecting his US tour with the Libor Smoldas Quartet. This quartet offers a masterful display of compositional creativity, group interplay and musical integrity, blending  Smoldas´ smooth and sweet, bebop-style jazz guitar with  piano by Peter Benes and the contra-bass of  Josef Feco, one of the hottest bassists in the country who brings a more energetic Roma touch to the group's modern jazz. With UK guest drummer Matt Fishwick.

You can download the press release here:


Information and images: Renata Clark
Tel. 020 73075182

Organised by the Czech Centre London and The Spice of Life in association with Staropramen.