In the 1980s Caine moved to New York, which became his hometown. Certainly the artistic vibrancy of New York being one of the most important art hubs in the world is immense inspiration to every talented artist. Uri Caine has developed a very active artistic timetable. He has published numerous discs, and in 2009 was nominated for Grammy in the ‘Best Classical Crossover Album’ category, for The Othello Syndrome. This is a project typical of Caine: a creative adventure with the famous Othello by Giuseppe Verdi, whose moods and music inspired Caine to work on his own vision in a jazz convention.
But of course Verdi is not the only classical composer who inspires Uri Caine’s imagination. There are others. For example Gustav Mahler, whose songs and monumental symphonies seemingly do not welcome a jazz pianist to dialogue with them. And yet they offer suitable inspiration to Uri Caine, as the Austrian composer’s music is something Caine knows how to comment upon and artistically develop in his own musical language. These are successful and acclaimed creative attempts: in 1997 Uri received an Award from the German Gustav Mahler Society.
During his numerous concerts this intriguing pianist presents his various ‘jazz’ or perhaps individual and modern visions of classical themes or entire pieces with which he enters into a musical dialogue. Such an inspiration can by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Sonata in C major ‘Facile’, Johann Sebastian Bach’s Goldberg Variations or the Diabelli Variations by Ludwig van Beethoven… It may also be Robert Schumann or Richard Wagner. The jazz canon is also a challenge to Uri Caine, or rather an invitation to create his own unique arrangements (George Gershwin, Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker, and Thelonious Monk). When you listen to Uri’s performances, his playing strikes you with unusual energy, the sheer ‘predatory’ style, the vitality of rhythms, the truly virtuosic panache and the skill at combining tradition with sonic modernity.
This night promises a very interesting experience, as the pianist will be accompanied by the well-known Lutosławski Quartet. The traditional string quartet and… a musical riddle. Uri Caine, both jazz and classical pianist will present a programme of his own compositions: a selection of various pieces including a premiere. Surely a musical treat.
Uri Caine was born in Philadelphia and began studying piano with Bernard Peiffer and composition with George Rochberg. He played in bands led by Philly Joe Jones, Hank Mobley,Johnny Coles, Mickey Roker, Odean Pope, Jymmie Merritt, Bootsie Barnes and Grover Washington. He attended the University of Pennsylvania and studied music composition with George Rochberg and George Crumb. Caine has recorded 25 cds as a leader. His most recent cd is a solo cd, Callithump, (Winter and Winter 2014) He has made cd’s featuring his jazz trio, his Bedrock Trio and his ensemble performing arrangements of Mahler, Wagner, Beethoven, Bach and Schumann. Recently Caine has received commissions from the Vienna Volksoper, The Seattle Chamber Players, Relache, The Beaux Arts Trio, the Basel Chamber Orchestra, Concerto Koln and the American Composers Orchestra. Caine was the Director of the Venice Biennale for Music in September 2003. He has performed his version of the Diabelli Variations with orchestras including the Cleveland Orchestra, the Moscow Chamber Orchestra, the CBC Orchestra in Canada and the Swedish Chamber Orchestra. From 2006-2009 he was composer in residence for the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and premiered his Concerto for Two Pianos and Chamber Orchestra with Jeffrey Kahane in May 2006. In 2009 he was nominated for a Grammy Award for The Othello Syndrome.
During the past several years, Caine has worked in groups led by Don Byron, Dave Douglas, John Zorn, Terry Gibbs and Buddy DeFranco, Clark Terry, Rashid Ali, Arto Lindsay, Sam Rivers and Barry Altschul, the Woody Herman Band, Annie Ross, the Enja Band, Global Theory and the Master Musicians of Jajouka. He has received grants from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Pew Foundation. In December, 2010 he was awarded a grant by the USA Artist Fellowships. He has performed at many jazz festivals including The North Sea Jazz Festival, Montreal Jazz Festival. Monterey Jazz Festival, JVC Festival, San Sebastian Jazz Festival, Newport Jazz Festival, as well as classical festivals including The Salzburg Festival, Munich Opera, Holland Festival, Israel Festival, IRCAM, and Great Performers at Lincoln Center.Recent compositions include The Passion of Octavius Catto written for the Philadelphia Orchestra and gospel choir and soloists and Sunburst ,a piano concerto composed for the Naples Symphony Orchestra,both premiered in 2014.New projects in 2015 include a new piece for piano and orchestra for the American Composers Orchestra and new pieces forthe Prism Saxophone Quartet and the Swedish Chamber Orchestra. He live in New York City with his wife, Jan