“The Fortaleza CD by composer and pianist Ania Paz is an authentic piece of art. It reflects intelligence, knowledge about the vast universes of academic and popular music, in addition to a very high sensitivity. Ania dares again to push jazz beyond itself, in terms of structure…The artist also talks about the importance of connecting nations and human beings. She is an example of a woman who is breaking barriers in many dimensions.“ - Estefanía Romero, Bop Spots – Jazz Research, Critic and Promotion Magazine, Mexico
Ania Paz, Peruvian and Spanish pianist and composer, is known for her modern and driving sound, impregnated by an original new fusion of Afro-Latin styles within the Jazz language.
She was born in Lima, Peru, where she started studying music at the age of 3, and wrote her first composition at the age of 6. Her passion for music took her to different countries, studying classical music as well as jazz, first in Germany and then in the United States. She settled later in Latin America, where she explored its various musical styles.
As a pianist, she successfully participates at several international festivals such as the TCI San Jose Jazz Festival in California, United States; the Rencontre autour du Piano Festival in Guadeloupe, France; the Festival Internacional JazzUV in Mexico; the International Festival Buenos Aires Jazz in Argentina; the International Festival Jazz en Lima in Peru; the Festival Internacional de Jazz de Valparaíso in Chile; the Dominican Republic Jazz Festival in Cabarete, Dominican Republic; the International Jazz Festival San Vicente Jazz in Mendoza, Argentina; and the International Festival of Contemporary Music Erart in Lima, Peru. She also presents her music at theatre halls, jazz clubs and television shows of Latin America, the United States and Europe, such as Danny’s Skylight Room (New York), Caja Postal (Madrid), Thelonius (Buenos Aires), Zinco Jazz Club (Mexico City), Jazzatlan (Cholula), Cinemacafe (Santo Domingo) and Jazz Zone (Lima).
As a composer she won, among others, the José Reyes symphonic composition prize of the Ministry of Culture in the Dominican Republic; the Festival Claro Song Competition in Lima, Peru; and the Jazz Composition Prize at Casa de Teatro in Santo Domingo.
She is the leader and founder of the Ania Paz Trio in Berlin, Germany, a group with a unified vision as soloists and rhythm section that perseveres on the creation of a new sound in Contemporary Latin Jazz. This new project reflects the spirit of freedom, peace, integration and experimental art that Ania has experienced in this city since her first visit.
On the drums, Christoph Hillmann is considered to be a particularly sensitive, detailed and powerfully-swinging multi-stylist between world music, various jazz traditions and avantgarde. On the double bass, Carmelo Leotta is a musician established throughout Europe who has embraced the diversity of musical trends such as jazz, blues, electronic and world music.
Some of Ania Paz` activities include the launching of the Dos Mundos CD (Two worlds), recorded in Peru and the Dominican Republic, as well as the launching of the Fortaleza CD with her recent Peru Chile Jazz project. The purpose of this series of initiatives is to strengthen the cultural bonds between several countries of Latin America and the World through the universality of Jazz. As a recipient of the Ibermúsicas Award, she presented her binational project on a tour in several cities of Mexico.
Other performances include the UNESCO International Jazz Day celebration; the International Chamber Music Festival; the Huánuco International Jazz Festival; the International Vibraphone and Marimba Festival Vibraciones; the I International Zapateo-Dance Festival Lima Zap Festival, and the Centro Cultural Peruano Norteamericano concert in Arequipa. Her concerts and projects are presented in several media, such as Movistar Musica and Sonidos del Mundo on TV Peru.
Ania Paz has connected her work to several universal values, such as bringing cultures and countries together through music, the integration of artistic disciplines, the promotion of contemporary composers´ current works, and social responsibility. She received an acknowledgment as a featured organizer by UNESCO's International Jazz Day for her work enabling dialogue between cultures through Jazz.
She produced and directed for the United Nations, the European Union and the Ministry of Culture multidisciplinary performances at the Teatro Nacional in Santo Domingo and at the Gran Teatro del Cibao in Santiago, integrating artists from different musical genres. She incorporated artistic expressions such as dance, poetry and literature, theatre and visual effects.
During several years she produced international multicultural concerts in the Dominican Republic such as Women in Jazz and Colors of Jazz, where she additionally participated as a musician.
She is the founder and leader of the Ania Paz Jazz Ensamble in Santo Domingo; as well as the producer of the Ania Paz Jazz Series, a multidisciplinary and cutting-edge initiative with the concept of jazz without borders that embraces the multicultural legacy, stimulates the development of creative new trends, and inspires the community through the artist´s values.
She successfully launched 7 CDs and 1 DVD of original music. Her recent Fortaleza CD was featured in Mexico, Peru and Uruguay by several specialized media. In addition, it was ranked among the best Peruvian albums 2019 in the listings of media Estereofonía and Rock' Achorao.
As an educator, she created and directed the first Contemporary Latin Jazz course at the Iglobal University of Funglode in Santo Domingo; she restructured the curriculum at the Folklore Department of the Conservatorio Nacional de Música in Santo Domingo; she founded the Jazzymas academy and created its curriculum; and she published several jazz and modern styles methods. She was a professor of Harmony, Composition, Arrangement, Ensemble and Improvisation and a thesis advisor at the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú and at the Universidad Peruana de Ciencias Aplicadas, where she received the “Talento de Oro” award (“Golden Talent”). She is currently part of the faculty staff at the UdK - University of the Arts - in Berlin.
She created a course called Jazz, Freedom and Creativity as part of the Master in Musicology program at PUCP. She represented this university at the First Jazz Education in Latin America Conference, organized by JazzUV (Universidad Veracruzana) in Mexico.
As a researcher, she presented a conference about the development of African rhythms in different areas of America at the ALARA international convention - Afro-Latin and American Research Association -, receiving recognition for extraordinary support from the University of Missouri-Columbia in the United States. She currently publishes articles about Jazz in Peru and The artist's look at Jazz in the Jazz Research, Critic and Promotion Magazine Bop Spots (Mexico) and the EncontrArte Musical Magazine (Argentina). She also collaborates with Vibración Azul Jazz Radio Show at the Colima University in Mexico.
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