Jazz pianist and arranger Marcus Sukiennik chooses an independent approach to the arrangement of the well-known jazz standard. It is a bow to classical compositional art and the improvisational art of jazz, at the same time a tribute to Dizzy Gillespie. Already the first note of this CD is an exclamation mark and causes a question mark - in the listener's mind. And the unexpected occurs: space and time for new territory.
The 7 variations and the small interludes captivate through diversity in instrumentation and conception. Composed solo piano passages, big band passages in the orchestral sound, intimate wood or wood and brass passages, brutal swinging tutti.
Especially worth mentioning are the convincing soloists e.g. Bernd Lechtenfeld (trb), George Tjong-Ayong (ts) and Thomas Gebhard (ss), outstanding Peter Heidl (flute). Marcus Sukiennik (piano) and his Projekt Big Band with André Nendza (bass), Hendrik Soll (drums), Michael Schuh (trumpet) were lucky: Georg Ruby and Martin Classen conducted. Released 2000 by JHM-Vertrieb, Label Jazzhausmusik
Press, Radio, Recommendations
The core of "Tunisia"
The original is one of the best-known classics of modern jazz, but here it takes a while before you hear it clearly. The variations and little interludes in which pianist and arranger Marcus Sukiennik encircles Dizzy Gillespie's "A Night In Tunisia" come from far away and gradually approach the "core". The result is a stimulating example of ambitious orchestral work in jazz today, full of surprises in compositional technique, arrangement, instrumentation and sonic awareness. And, moreover, exciting to listen to.
Bernd Hoffmann in the broadcast Jazz'n & World Trends on 24.8.2000
The 6th variation "A Night In Tunisia Suite". This colorful chain of variations on Dizzy Gillespie's most famous composition was written by the Cologne-based pianist and arranger Marcus Sukiennik. The CD is currently available from the Cologne Jazz Haus distributor. I particularly like the idea of variations, as the young pianist very cleverly thematizes the different timbres in the individual suite movements. His references such as veiling, torpor and liberation, breath or, as here, celebration, open the listener's expectation towards this well known motif. These 7 variations are a successful first work.
New releases from Jazz am Rhein - Author: Hans-Jürgen von Osterhausen
... Another reference for a great of jazz history is provided by another impressive pianist from the Rhineland, Marcus Sukiennik, with his "A Night In Tunisia Suite" to the address of Dizzy Gillespie. Seven variations with some procedural titles like alignment, run-up or transition create an impressionistic picture of this unique title, which has been played by so many greats of jazz - just think of Miles Davis' recordings from the fifties or those of Art Blakey's Jazzmessengers - of appropriate urgency. A large band of altogether 35 musicians, of which of course only just under half are used at any one time, accompany Sukiennik as he cautiously approaches the theme and then tests it out in various directions: a small masterpiece of large-scale orchestral jazz of the present day.
Marcus Sukiennik has written an interesting and colorful series of variations which are based on the Dizzy Gillespie classic, "A Night In Tunisia". The band which he has assembled for this recording delivers a first class performance, and there are convincing solo contributions as well. I enjoyed hearing this music, and I am sure that you will, too.