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LIBOR SMOLDAS – curriculum vitae
**MUSIC EDUCATION **
2010 – 2013
- Janáček Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Brno, Bachelor's degree
Cambridge English certificate: Advanced (CAE)
2009 – 2010
- Lessons in New York, USA
with Peter Bernstein, Ben Monder, Paul Bollenback, Mike Moreno, Steve Cardenas, Lage Lund and Peter Eldridge
2003 – 2006
- Advanced Secondary Studies department of the Ježek Conservatory of Jazz and Popular Music
2001 – 2003
- Ježek Conservatory of Jazz and Popular Music
- Best jazz composition of a year (Letter Home from album Intuition). Awarded by OSA and Bohemia Jazz Fest
- International PETROF AWARD for the best piano composition
- Gramodeska competition, best composition in up to 35 years category ( song Brazilian impressions)
- Straubinger Startbanh award – Straubing, Germany (With Ondrej Pivec’s Organic Quartet)
2008 - The audience price for best band – Getxo, Spain (17.000 visitors) (With Ondrej Pivec’s Organic Quartet)
- Czech Academy of Music Award (Czech Grammy), best jazz CD of the year (With Ondrej Pivec’s Organic Quartet)
- Berklee College of Music live audition scholarship, Freiburg, Germany
Band of the year – Philips International Jazz Festival competition – Prague, Czech rep. (With Ondrej Pivec’s Organic Quartet) TOURING &
Three weeks long tour in Australia, January
Jazzová KLAUSura series in Prague, Libor Šmoldas Organ Trio & Melanie Scholtz, February
SoulMates Czech and Polish tour, February
Three months long tour in Australia, January to March
Deerehead Inn and New York City, USA with Hell's Kitchen Funk Orchestra
Smoldas – Nussbaum – Anderson czech tour, festivals Jazzinec, Policka and more, April
Zeuritia trio with Duncan Hopkins, touring Hungary, Slovakia, Poland, May
Libor Šmoldas Quartet at Prague Spring festival, June
Ingrid James quartet tour June, August
Libor Šmoldas Organ Trio at Bohemia Jazz Fest, June
Zeuritia at South Bohemia Jazz Fest, August
Bob Montgomery, Josh Quinlan & Libor Šmoldas organ trio tour, November
Three weeks long tour in the USA. 21 concerts and lectures in cities of NYC, Philadelphia, Easton, Bethlehem, Marlboro, Denver, Niwot, Boulder, Fort Collins. Kluby Fat Cat, Chris' Jazz Cafe, B Flat, Falcon Arts center, Dazzle Jazz Club, Treppeda's, Crossroads Theatre Denver, Mike Wright Art Gallery, Ace Gillet. With musicians: Brian Charette, Jordan Young, Daniel Wilkins, Garry Rissmiller, Joe Plowman, Jay Anderson, Jeff Hirshfield, Scott Lee, Tom Whaley, Todd Reid, Greg Garrison, Josh Quinlan, Ken Walker, Bob Montgomery, Alejandro Castaño, Matt Smiley, Ben Markley and John Olson.
Three months long stay in Australia, teching and concert tour (Sydney, Brisbane, Wollongong, Sunshine Coast, Cairns, Mount Gambier..)
Czech tour with SoulMates.
Bohemia Jazz Fest with Libor Šmoldas Quartet
Bob Montgomery / Al Hermann quintet Czech tour
My Australian tour:
Brisbane Jazz Club, 505 Venue Sydney, Jazz Workshop Australia & more
With John Morrison, Brendan Clark, Ingrid James, Bob Montgomery (USA) and others
Spain with Stepehen Keogh (IR), Albert Sanz (ESP) and Flo Moore (UK)
London with the Global Music Foundation festival
Bobby Watson (USA) & Libor Šmoldas quartet: Prague Proms, Il Ritmo delle Città jazz festival Milan.
- Trio with Adam Nussbaum (drums) and Jay Anderson (bass) (USA), Blue Note Poznan, festival Janackuv Maj Ostrava, South Bohemia Jazz Festival, Festival Dodo Sosoku Piestany, JazZlín and more.
London (UK), Libor Šmoldas Quartet feat Matt Fishwick
SoulMates (USA/CZ) organ trio
Bobby Watson (USA) & Libor Šmoldas quartet:
Jazz Fest Brno, South Bohemia Jazz Fest, Jazz Dock
Libor Šmoldas Quartet Amercan tour:
New York city (Smalls, BNH), New Jersey (Trumpets), Pennsylvania (Moravian College, LaFayette university), Washington DC (Bayou, Czech embassy), North Carolina (Western Carolina University Jazz festival), Richmond (Bogarts)
Poland with Libor Šmoldas Quartet
Bohemia Jazz Fest, Pozdní sběr and other major festivals with my Libor Šmoldas Quartet
- Rudolfinum Prague with Lukasz Zyta, Ondřej Pivec and Prague Chamber Philharmonic orchestra
With Ondrej Pivec’s Organic Quartet:
- Bucinatores Bigband with Joel Frahm
- Sun-Set club, Bei-Jing, China - Blue Note, Dresden Germany - Cheltenham Jazz festival, Cheltenham, England - ORF Radiokulturhaus, Vienna, Austria - Getxo jazz festival, Getxo Spain - International jazz festival in Athens, Greek
- Prague Spring - Various concert tours in Europe (Turkey, Romania, Bulgaria, Moldavia, Germany, Poland, France) Yvonne Sanchez band
opening act for Billy Cobham’s Culture mix EU tour
Blue, Smoldas plays Jezek (New Port Line), solo guitar, guests David Doruzka, Tomas Mika, Robert Balzar.
Smoldas / Nussbaum / Anderson, Dreamtime (New Port Line)
Hal Tsuchida & European Friends: Swingin' with the Hammond Organ (Mons Records)
Bill Warfield and the Hell's Kitchen Funk Orchestra: Mercy, Mercy, Mercy (BluJazz)
Zeuritia – Weightless (New Port Line). Zeurítia vocals, Jan Andr piano, Marek Urbanek drums, Tomas Baros bass, Jakub Zomer organ.
SoulMates (Charette, Šmoldas, Hobzek, New Port Line)
Skip Wilkinson Quartet – Czech Dreams (with Tomáš Hobzek, Tomáš Baroš, New Port Line)
Smoldas / Nussbaum / Anderson, Dreamtime (New Port Line)
Bobby Watson & Libor Šmoldas Quartet, Intuition (New Port Line)
Libor Šmoldas Quartet: 18 days. 2000 miles. (recorded in USA, New Port Line)
- Ondrej Pivec & Organic Quartet: LIVE! (digital release)
Czech National Radio recording of my quartet
- Libor Šmoldas Quartet: Live at Jazz Dock
- Libor Šmoldas, Sam Yahel, George Mraz, Jeff Ballard: In New York on time (recorded in the USA, Animal Music)
- Animal Music Collection compilation
Before 2010 - Libor Šmoldas Trio (feat Lukasz Zyta and Ondřej Pivec): On the Playground (2007, Animal Music)
- Zeurítia: Zeurítia (with Michal Tokaj, Michal Baranski and others, 2008, Animal Music)
With Ondrej Pivec’s Organic Quartet:
- Never Enough (AnimalMusic, 2006)
- Don’t get Ideas (Cube-metier, 2005)
Lectures and clinics in Australia in January, February and March (Jazz Workshop Australia camp, Vocal workshop Brisbane, many more)
Lehigh University clinic, USA
GMF Tuscany International Workshop and Jazz Festival, Italy
Lectures in the USA at Moravian College, Lehigh University, Lafayette College, University of Colorado and Denver school of arts
Lectures, workshops a lessons for these schools and organizations in Australia: JWA Jazz Camp Sydney, Loreto college Brisbane, Villanova college Brisbane, St Pauls High School Port Macquarie, Smithfield school Cairns, St Andrew's Catholic College Cairns, Generations in Jazz academy Mount Gambier, St Ives High School Sydney, Brisbane Jazz Music Institute, Brisbane Conservatorium, St Andrew’s Anglican College
Sunshine Coast, West Moreton Anglican College Ipswich.
International Jazz Workshop Kryoneri, Greece
Czech Jazz Workshop, Prague
GMF Tuscany International Workshop and Jazz Festival, Italy
Summer guitar courses, Brno, Czech republic
Jazz Workshop Australia camp, Sydney
with John Morrison, Saul Richardson, Graeme Lyall, Remco Keijzer, Roy Ferin (USA), Eric Dunan (USA), Nick Southcott, Jacki Cooper, Brendan Clarke, Bob Montgomery (USA)
- Vocal and instrumental masterclass with Ingrid James, Brisbane Australia
Global Music Foundation in London (UK)
With Bobby Watson, Bruce Barth, Claire Martin, Perico Sambeat, Kevin Dean, Chris Hill, Jeremy Brown, Eddie Hick, Stephen Keogh, Francesco Petreni, Pete Chruchill
International Jazz Workshop Europe by the GMF (Saarwellingen, Germany)
with Stephen Keogh, Bruce Barth, Gilad Azmon, Jean Toussaint, Tina May, Thilo Wagner, Kevin Dean and more
Summer Jazz Workshop Kryoneri, Greece with Skip Wilkins, Dan Wilkins, Spyros Panagiotopoulos and Periklis Trivolis.
Masterclasses with Adam Nussbaum and Jay Anderson at Akademia Muzyczna Poznan Poland and jazz conservartory Prague
- Czech Jazz Workshop Prague with Phil Wilkinson, Brian Charette, Steve Walsh, Marta
Töpferová, Kornel Fekete-Kovács.
- Hosting weekly jam sessions for music students in U Stare Pani, Le Patio and Blues sklep jazz clubs in Prague.
Czech Jazz Workshop, Prague (CZ)
with Brian Charette (USA), Ana Cisneros (ESP), Juraj Griglák (SK), Kornel Fekete-Kovács (HUN), Marcin Jahr (PL), Marta Töpferová (CZ/USA), Osian Roberts (UK), Phil Wilkinson (UK), Steve Walsh (USA).
Jazz Workshop Australia camp, Sydney
with John Morrison, Saul Richardson, Graeme Lyall, , Eric Dunan (USA),, Jacki Cooper, Brendan Clarke and others
the International jazz festival Litvínov workshop
Master classes on Moravian College, LaFayette university and Western Carolina University in the USA
2008 – 2013
Czech Jazz Workshops in Prague (CZ)
with Aga Zaryan (PL), Jeff Ballard (USA), Joel Frahm (USA), Palu Bollenback (USA), David Valdez (USA), Steve Haines (USA), Pavel Wlosok (USA/CZ) and many more
Conservatory of Jaroslav Ježek in Prague (CZ) teaching guitar, ensemble and rhythm classes
- Hundreds of private lessons
**ORGANIZATION MEMBERSHIP **
- Partner membership in OSA (author’s right’s organization) since 2012
Member of Czech Jazz Society, helping young local bands, inviting international musicians and organizing clinics and workshops 2009 – 2012
SELECTED PRESS QUOTES
- Europe’s rising young jazz star
All About Jazz, Edward Blanco, 2nd November 2013
- Libor Šmoldas is one of the best jazz guitarists the Czech Republic has produced in recent years.
All About Jazz, Chris Mosey, 10th October 2013
- Šmoldas's style is smooth and sweet, bebop-style jazz guitar rather than rougher, blusier playing, and he can produce an astonishing number of notes from seemingly no physical motion.
Prague Jazz, Tony Emmerson, 18th July 2011
- Šmoldas' melodic lines move gracefully and happily through the music..... lovely electric guitar work.
All About Jazz, NYC
He’s a warm, inventive straight-ahead guitarist with some great ideas and the chops to – express them.
Jazz Express, 23.3.2011, USA
LIBOR SMOLDAS – short résumé
Libor Šmoldas (1982) is a Prague based jazz guitarist and composer. Besides top Czech and European musicians he has worked and recorded with international stars such as George Mraz, Jeff Ballard, Sam Yahel, Bobby Watson, Adam Nussbaum, Brian Charette, Jay Anderson, Stephen Keogh and more.
Libor has released seven albums as a leader (Blue, Smoldas plays Jezek 2015, Dreamtime 2013, Intuition 2013,18 Days 2000 Miles 2012, In New York on time 2010, Live at Jazz Dock 2010, On the playground 2007). He has worked and recorded on numerous occaisions as a sideman for Hal Tsuchida, Skip Wilkins, Bob Montgomery, Ingrid James, Bill Warfield, Zeuritia, Robert Balzar. While playing with Ondrej Pivec and his Organic Quartet, the band was awarded with Andel award for best jazz recording of the year.
In spite of his being awarded a scholarship to Berklee School of Music in 2005, he decided to stay in the Czech republic and studied Advanced Secondary Studies department of the Jezek Conservatory of Jazz and Music and Janacek Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Brno. He toured the USA with his czech quartet in 2011 and have been coming back to play there ever since.
Libor’s concert activities include four continents and cities like New York, Washington, Sydney, Brisbane, Beijing, Istambul, Milan and London. As an educator Libor visited Amerika, Australia, Germany, England, Italy, Greece and Poland.
Since 2012 Libor has been touring yearly in Australia, living there for a quater of a year in 2014 and 2015.
In spite of his young age is Libor widely considered to be one of the best jazz musicians in the country and a leading representative of his generation.
LIBOR SMOLDAS – full résumé
Libor Šmoldas was born in 1982 in Olomouc in the Czech Republic, but has lived in Prague since his childhood. He has been an avid musician since his early youth, starting with the recorder and trumpet, and picking up the guitar at the age of twelve. After initial forays into rock and blues he began to take an interest in jazz, mainly due to his fascination with the recordings of Charlie Parker.
While still a student of the Evropská High School of Music he began to appear in jazz clubs and bars all around Prague with American blues singer Phil Speat, as well as at the traditional Sunday jam sessions in the popular club U Malého Glena, one of the cradles of the up-and-coming generation of Czech jazz musicians. Before beginning his conservatory studies he studied guitar with Josef Kůstka, Luboš Andršt, Zdeněk Fišer and Petr Zelenka.
In 2001 he entered the Jaroslav Ježek Conservatory of Jazz and Popular Music, studying in the jazz guitar department under Jiří Šindler. Two years later he was accepted into its newly opened Advanced Secondary Studies department, where his teachers were Peter Binder, Josef Štěpánek and David Dorůžka. His classmates included Jakub Doležal, Daniel Šoltis, Rastislav Uhrík, Vojtěch Procházka, Oskar Török, Roman Vícha, Ondřej Pivec, Tomáš Hobzek and other leading personalities of the younger generation of Czech jazzmen.
Šmoldas has been a permanent fixture on the Prague jazz scene since his conservatory days when he performed not only
with his classmates, but also with such outstanding artists as NajPonk, Jaromír Honzák, Radek Zapadlo and Jiří
Slavíček. He also played with Polish-Cuban singer Yvonne Sanchez and her band Brazilian Mood, opening for Billy Cobham
on a tour through Turkey and Cyprus.
In 2005 he went to Freiburg, Germany to audition for a scholarship to the prestigious Berklee School of Music. Although he was awarded a scholarship, he decided to remain in the Czech republic. Libor graduated the Advanced Secondary Studies in Prague and after the jazz program was newly opened at the Janáček Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Brno, he made his bachelor’s degree there. His teachers in the academy where David Doruzka and Vilem Spilka.
His first US experience would come in 2009 when he studied in New York under leading jazz guitarists Paul Bollenback, Lage Lund, Mike Moreno, Ben Monder, Steve Cardenas and Peter Bernstein.
His friendship with hammondist and conservatory classmate Ondřej Pivec led to the 2005 founding of Organic Quartet with drummer Tomáš Hobzek and saxophonist Jakub Doležal. The bandʼs first album Donʼt Get Ideas (Cube-Metier, 2006) earned very positive reviews both at home and abroad, as well as the Czech Academy of Popular Musicʼs Anděl award for Best Jazz Album of the Year. Shortly thereafter the quartet began to perform on festival stages throughout Europe (Cheltenham, Sibiu, Kishinev, Prague Autumn, Paris, Athens, Sophia), toured China, and won a number of awards, including the Audience Choice award at Getxo, 1st Place at the Phillips Jazz Prague festival and Straubing jazz festival. Their second album, Never Enough (Animal Music, 2007) was also a huge success, and Organic Quartet became one of the most respected jazz groups in the Czech Republic. They also recorded a live album LIVE! and cooperated with many interesting musicians such as Joel Frahm, Karel Ruzicka Jr or Gabriela Demeterova. Frontman Ondřej Pivec is currently living in New York, returning to the Czech Republic occasionally to tour with the quartet.
Šmoldas recorded his debut album On the Playground (Animal Music, 2007) with organist Ondřej Pivec and leading
Polish drummer Łukasz Żyta. The album, which contains six of Šmoldasʼ original compositions and two jazz standards,
successfully combines traditional and modern approaches to jazz, and generated a lot of excitement with the Czech public
and critics alike.
Among the trioʼs other notable successes were performances at the prestigious Young Prague festival (2007) and in the Jazz At the Rudolfinum concert (2009), which featured Šmoldasʼ arrangement of his “Lydian Blues” for the trio and the Prague Philharmonia chamber orchestra.
In the summer of 2009 Šmoldas recorded his second album, this time in New York with some of the worldʼs best jazz players, including bassist George Mraz, drummer Jeff Ballard and pianist Sam Yahel. The album entitled In New York On Time was released in early 2010 to overwhelmingly positive reviews in the Czech and international press. At the age of 27, Šmoldas thus became the only jazzman in the Czech Republic to have recorded with jazz stars of this calibre.
Libor Šmoldas Quartet was formed in 2009, featuring czech’s premier youg players Josef Fečo on bass, Tomáš
Hobzek on drums, and Petr Beneš on piano. The quartetʼs repertoire consists of original compositions by Šmoldas. Band
recorded Libor’s third release, this time a live recording entitled Live at Jazz Dock (2010). On the internet Live
at Jazz Dock was had more than three thousand single downloads.
Thanks to popularity of Live at Jazz Dock Libor's quartet did a thing previous generations of Czech jazz musicians would only dream about. They toured the USA performing in New York city (Smalls, BNH), New Jersey (Trumpets), Pennsylvania (Moravian College, LaFayette university), Washington DC (Bayou, Czech embassy), North Carolina (Western Carolina University Jazz festival), Richmond (Bogarts in the Fan).
During the tour quartet recorded another album in studios of the Western Carolina University. The CD was released in 2012 and entitled 18 days, 2000 miles (New Port Line, 2012). It consists of compositions of all members and some cover material as well and captures the band in great shape after a tour.
Bobby Watson, the legendary american alto saxophonist and former member of the Jazz Messengers made a guest appereance there on 18 days, 2000 miles. Since then Libor Šmoldas Quartet became his European band playing a lot of concerts including major festivals like Prague Proms, Jazz Fest Brno or Il Ritmo delle Città jazz festival Milan.
The fifth Šmoldas’ album is entitled Intuition (New Port Line, 2013) and features his quarett with Bobby Watson. It was recorded at the end of czech tour and released on Prague Proms festival in Prague.
The Libor Smoldas Quartet has been gaining recognition across the Czech rep, Europe and USA for five years now. Playing hunderds of concerts both in clubs and festivals and releasing three albums so far.
The sixth and lates Libor’s album is a trio record with Adam Nussbaum on drums and Jay Anderson on bass. Both players rank among the very top world jazz musicians. Album is entitled Dreamtime (New Port Line, 2013) and consists solely of ballads. Trio has introduced this album to Czech, Slovakiana and Polish audiances during their festival tour in 2013.
Šmoldas also plays regularly as a sideman. Both in regular bands and backing-up for visiting artists. For example with Jan Kořínekʼs popular blues band Groove, his wife's band Zeurítia, Hell's Kitchen Funk Orchestra, american pianist Skip Wilkinson and top New York organist Brian Charette. Also with Bob Montgomery, Bill Warfield, Al Hermann, Michał Tokaj, Michał Barański and Aga Zarian.
Libor has also an international career as a teacher. He has been teaching jazz guitar, rhythm a nd ensembles on the Prague conservatory since 2006. He frequently teaches jazz workshops, camps and masterclasses, lately in Australia, Germany, Italy, England, Greece, USA, Poland and Czech republic. Among his co-teachers over the yers have been musicians like Graeme Lyall, John Morrison, Bruce Barth, Perico Sambeat, Kevin Dean, Stephen Keogh, Phil Wilkinson, Brian Charette, Steve Walsh, Marta Töpferová, Kornel Fekete-Kovács and many others.
In 2014 Libor lived in Australia for three months, teaching and performing Sydney, Brisbane, Wollongong, Mount Gambier, Port Macquarie, Cairns, Sunshine Coast, Ipswich and more.
Libor Šmoldas ranks among the stars of the Czech jazz scene in spite of his youth. He plays, teaches and records with the international stars of the jazz world and is widely considered to be one of the best jazz guitarists in the country.