Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians

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Sund, Tim

Sund, Tim, pianist and composer; b. Hagen, Germany, 4 March 1971.

Sund started with music at 6 and with piano lessons, when he was 8 years old. Born into artistically and musically talented family - both his parents Karin and Karsten Sund played instruments and the grandfather on his mother's side was a professional violinist - Sund calls his father's work as a painting artist as one of his strongest inspirations. First receiving a purely classical education he discovered Jazz in his early teens. Soon he started to participate at workshops and masterclasses with so reknown pianists as Joanne Brackeen, Walter Norris, Bob Degen and Richie Beirach. In 1988 he already won the 1st Prize at Jugend Jazzt NRW, Germany.

When in 1993 Beirach invited him to New York as his student, Sund had already been studying Jazz at Musikhochschule Koln with Frank Chastenier (WDR Big Band), had been on tour with saxophonist Ernie Watts. After finishing his studies at the Musikhochschule Koln in 1995 Sund received a scholarship to enroll for his Masters in classical composition at Manhattan School of Music. Studying under Ludmila Ulehla Sund dived into New York's colorful New Music Scene, composed a.o. his Piano Concerto Towards the Lotus Shrine and world- premiered Ulehla's Sonata for Improvisation. At the same time he participated in many session in the city and soon found himself leading a quintet including saxophonist Joel Frahm and Gregor Huebner on violin.

From 1997 to 2000 Sund's focus was on his international quintet, recordings and doing extensive touring. In 2001, after finishing a commission by the City of Berlin for a composition for large orchestra and Jazzensemble, Sund returned, after a long musical journey, to the musical format from which he originally had started off: the piano trio, this time with bassist Martin Lillich and Michael Kersting on drums. In 2002 Sund was invited by saxophonist Tom Christensen to play several concerts in NYC. Sund is very clear about his pianistic influences as Herbie Hancock, Bill Evans, Chick Corea, Paul Bley, McCoy Tyner, Keith Jarrett, Richie Beirach and Lyle Mays. He also draws upon the innovations of 20th Century classical music. Besides Strawinsky, Alban Berg and Takemitsu Sund feels especially close to American composers like Charles Ives, Carl Ruggles, Barber, Morton Feldman, John Cage and Steve Reich. Sunds compositional opus includes more than 100 jazz compositions from piano solo to 10-piece Jazzensemble as well as several compositions for Orchestra, a chamber opera, songs and chamber music.

He lives together with his wife Erika Rojo, a classical singer, and their two children Devi and Ravi.

About Time (1993); Tim Sund & Claudius Valk: Borderlands (1994); ... In The Midst Of Change (1998); Erika Rojo & Tim Sund: Das Lied (1999); The Rains From A Cloud Do Not Wet The Sky (2000); Trialogue, Tim Sund Trio (2002); Tim Sund/Tom Christensen's Americana (2003)

Contact information:
Tim Sund 
Claszeile 53  14165 Berlin 
Fon/Fax: (030) 851 5709  

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