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Paul Edis

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Biography of Paul Edis

Described as ‘a brilliant young pianist’ (Alyn Shipton, The Guardian) Paul Edis is a performer, composer, educator and promoter based in the North East England.

From an early age Paul was composing and performing regularly, forming his own bands and promoting concerts. After receiving a scholarship to study composition at the London College of Music, Paul quickly became an integral part of the Jazz department and began performing regularly in London.

He moved back to the North East after completing his degree and began studying for an MA and then PhD in Composition at the University of York. At the same time, he began to work regularly in the area, performing with the Voice of the North Jazz Orchestra and backing touring soloists (including John Faddis, Julien Siegel, Alan Barnes, Tony Kofi amongst others). He established a regular jazz night at the Side Café in Newcastle (which later inspired the regular Splinter at the Bridge sessions) and formed his own trio and then sextet.

His sextet released their debut album There Will Be Time in 2012 to critical acclaim. He has since released two solo albums and a second Sextet CD. Reviewing Paul’s 2015 solo CD Just Like Me critic Brian Morton described Paul as ‘a significant new voice in British Jazz’. His duo CD A Narrow Escape with saxophonist Vasilis Xenopoulos was released at the end of 2016. His music has been performed on the radio in the UK, in Europe and in the US.

In 2016 Ushaw College commissioned Paul to compose a 45-minute work to celebrate the feast of St. Cuthbert. This new work comprised elements of jazz, folk and contemporary classical music. The Ushaw Ensemble who gave the premiere of this new work were chosen by JazzNorth to be one of the Northern Line ambassadors in 2017/18 and have toured the North. The recording of the St. Cuthbert’s Suite is due to be released in Spring 2019.

Paul regularly receives commissions for a variety of amateur and professional ensembles as well as writing original songs and new music for his own ensembles.

Working in music education, Paul has been course leader for the BMus Jazz Popular and Commercial Music degree at Sage, Gateshead, he has given lectures and taught for Newcastle, Durham and York universities and he regularly gives workshops, talks and masterclasses for musicians of all ages. He works extensively in youth jazz education and was asked to be jazz piano tutor for the prestigious National Youth Jazz Collective summer school in 2018.

Paul also promotes successful jazz concert series in Durham and Newcastle, and has been director of the Ushaw Jazz Festival since 2016.

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