19 September: Kyle Shepherd Trio
Fresh off a highly acclaimed Canadian Tour in June, the Kyle Shepherd Trio will embark on a Southern African Concert Tour in September 2015 that will see them perform in Mozambique, Botswana and in major cities across South Africa.
Kyle Shepherd, arguably one of South Africa’s leading progressive pianists and composers of his generation, is fast gaining international recognition for his distinctive compositional style and performances.
The twenty-eight-year-old virtuoso pianist who has a well-established record of celebrated performances in South Africa, Europe, Asia, Canada and the USA has already released five (5) critically acclaimed albums in his young career. ‘Dream State’, a 21-track double album of his Trio released in 2014, garnered nominations for both the 2015 South African Music Award [SAMA] and a 2015 Metro FM Music Award in the Jazz Category. His debut solo piano offering ‘Into Darkness’, recorded in Japan was launched with a tour in the South-East Asian country in the same year  and included a performance at the prestigious Tokyo Jazz Festival. Previous releases ‘fineART’, ‘A Portrait of Home’ & ‘South African History !X’, have also attracted SAMA nominations.
The award-winning Shepherd, recipient of both the coveted ‘UNISA National Piano Competition Award  and the ‘Standard Bank Young Artist of the Year’ Award  in the Jazz Category regularly performs in concert as a Solo pianist, while also leading his Trio, with Shane Cooper (double bass) and Jonno Sweetman (drums).
In the Dream State album’s liner notes, the renowned arts journalist and author, Percy Mabandu succinctly describes the ethos of the trio in this way:
“There’s a palpable connectedness they share as players, a connection that also touches attuned audiences at their live performances too. This band is on a search for more than beautiful notes. They are asking more of the music. Its corporeal and ethereal aspects are invoked into the simultaneous sound ritual.”
Shepherd is also a regular member of the Carlo Mombelli ‘Stories’ Quartet, Kesivan & the Lights – who performed at Carnegie Hall, New York in 2014, The Claude Cozens Trio, The Benjamin Jephta Quartet and ‘Black Box’, a South African-Swiss collaboration.