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“As a pianist, Mr. Tepfer combines superb technique with a complex set of impulses: He’s a deeply rational improviser drawn to the unknown.” — The New York Times
Dan Tepfer is one of this generation’s most extraordinary and brilliant talents, earning an international reputation as a pianist-composer and AI innovator with wide-ranging ambition and individualism. Currently Brooklyn-based, Tepfer, was born and raised in Paris to accomplished American parents. His mother sang in the Paris Opera chorus for 20 years; his father, a biologist, plays classical guitar. Dan studied piano privately before entering Paris Conservatory at age seven where he developed an affinity for J.S. Bach – and also improvisation, inspired by his jazz pianist maternal grandfather in Oregon, where he spent summers.
But the story gets more interesting. Dan had an early and parallel attraction to computer coding in childhood. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Astrophysics from the University of Edinburgh then received a master’s degree in Jazz Piano Performance from the New England Conservatory in Boston. Thus, he possesses uncommon gifts that percolate through his expansive mind, calling on his skills with machine learning to integrate with his musical compositions in the most unique manner.
By looking at his tour schedule, it’s impossible to predict what Dan will do next. He has performed around the world with some of the leading lights in jazz and classical music, spending a decade as sidekick to the late, legendary alto saxophonist, Lee Konitz, and then becoming a favored accompanist to soprano Renée Fleming, first in a concert at Carnegie Hall along with bassist Christian McBride, and later performing multiple concert dates culminating in recording with her. He has also crafted a discography that is quite striking for its breadth and depth, encompassing probing solo improvisations and intimate duets, as well as trio albums rich in their rhythmic verve, melodic allure and the leader’s keen-eared taste for melodies irrespective of genre. The New York Times said about Tepfer: “He has a wide-open sensibility, as tuned into Bach and Björk as to Monk and Wayne Shorter.”
Whether it is his extraordinary original and improvisational expressions of Bach’s Goldberg Variations/ Variations or the ingenious intersection between science and art in Natural Machines, Dan Tepfer unfailingly thrills and astounds.