Piano masters Robi Botos and Hilario Durán team up for an evening of holiday classics, jazz standards and music that reflects their roots.
DATE: December 23
TIME: 9:00 pm
PLACE: Jazz Bistro, Toronto
Hungarian born Romani/ Musician Robi Botos was raised in a musical family and is largely self-taught. Robi began his musical career when he was a child, growing up in Budapest, playing drums and percussion. It was at age seven when Robi first took up piano. Robi immigrated to Canada in 1998 and is now a permanent resident of the country he calls home with his wife and children.
Shortly after coming to Canada, Robi caught the ear of Canadian Jazz great Oscar Peterson and quickly became his protégé. To this day, Robi remains a disciple of Dr. Peterson’s mighty sense of swing and technical virtuosity. Along with this influence, Robi possesses a deep tradition in Romani, Hungarian and European Folk and Classical music. This fusion of North American Bebop, Hard Bop, and Modern Jazz along with the deep tradition of Folk music in Eastern Europe and Romantic Classical music, has formulated a sound and approach that is formidable and unsurpassed. Many of Jazz’s greatest musicians consider Robi to be one of the few young leaders on the piano worldwide. Musicians from Branford Marsalis to Chaka Khan, Al Jarreau, and many more consider Robi to be one of the greats on the instrument.
Cuban born Hilario Durán grew up in Havana in a musical family surrounded by a variety of diverse musical influences on a daily basis. He began working as a professional musician in Cuba’s Los Papa Cun-Cun Ensemble and in a variety of musical formats. Later on, in the 70’s, Durán was Chucho Valdés’ chosen successor in Cuba’s most modern big band, Orquesta Cubana de Música Moderna.
Hilario Durán toured worldwide and performed with Dizzy Gillespie and Michel Legrand, among many others, as part of Arturo Sandoval’s band where he was pianist/keyboardist, arranger and musical director for 9 years.
Chucho Valdés has acknowledged Hilario Durán as one of the greatest Cuban pianists of the 20th century, calling the Grammy-nominated and multi JUNO-award winner “an unparalleled pianist, composer and arranger of the first order”.