PRSO & The Tomáš Sýkora Trio: An Homage to Karel Růžička
DOX+, 18. 9. 2020
Karel Růžička: Lovebird (arr. T. Sýkora)
Tomáš Sýkora: Hidden Songs Suite
Karel Růžička jr.: Grace and Gratitude Medley (arr. T. Sýkora)
Štěpánka Balcarová – conductor
David Fárek – saxophone
Tomáš Sýkora – piano
Tomáš Liška – bass
Roman Vícha – drums
PRSO & The Tomáš Sýkora Trio: An Homage to Karel Růžička The most extensive music project to date by jazz pianist and composer Tomáš Sýkora. Live recording of a concert performance in honour of the memory of Karel Růžička who was Sýkora’s teacher and close friend. Sýkora assembled the programme as a curator of the “New Horizons” concert series by the Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra which merges jazz and classical music in unique concert projects.
The concert comprises Růžička’s famous piece Lovebird for a chamber ensemble and jazz quartet, arranged by Sýkora for a larger line-up. This is followed by Sýkora’s own suite, Hidden Songs, whose individual movements evoke various song forms. The concert also comprises a selection of compositions from the latest album Grace and Gratitude by Růžička’s son, composer and saxophonist Karel Růžička Jr., (released by Animal Music in 2018). The compositions from the album, dedicated to the memory of Růžička’s loved ones, have been arranged and assembled by Sýkora into an eponymous large suite. The composition is concluded by the powerful theme of “On Earth As It Is In Heaven”, a song which pays tribute to Karel Růžička as an outstanding man, loving father, an excellent musician and a close friend. The compositional invention of both Karel Růžičkas and Tomáš Sýkora is supported in this album by Sýkora’s sensitive and effective orchestrations in which the varied colours of the orchestra intermingle with the energy of the jazz performers who have been given a generous space for improvisation as well.