Pianist, composer, arranger and educator, Odyssey Bogussevich was born in Potsdam, Germany. Raised in Moscow, Russia, Odyssey studied piano with one of Russia's jazz greats Yuri Markin in the 1980s, and teaches improvisation at Yurgenson Music School in Russian capital. But it was composition and performance what made Bogussevich's reputation as of a highly unusual artist whose musical voice was distinctively his own.

Off the beaten paths: this is how his creative evolution could be easily described. Having performed at Montreux Jazz Festival's "Off" stage in 1995, he made such a great impact on the festival executives that the invitation for a performance at the main stage followed immediately. Bogussevich performed solo, using both acoustic piano and a synthesizer which enhanced his ability to create vast soundscapes all by himself. His unique solo performance was also what attracted the attention of the artistic directors of Piano Solo Jazz Festival in Brussels, Belgium, in 1998, and Montreux Detroit Jazz Festival in the U.S. the following year.

But Odyssey would not be himself if he'd stuck with the same musical setting throughout his creative career. Mixing the rich heritage of the great Russian classical music tradition and strong jazz improvisation skills, Bogussevich creates an unique blend where strings swing pretty hard, in spite of the soft nature of their sound attack, and piano switches naturally from fugue progressions to elaborate long improvisational lines and back. Released by Russia's oldest record label, Melodiya, this album could be described as an effective effort to mutually enrich both classical and jazz traditions of the cross-cultural, multinational melting pot of Russian and - speaking more wide - European and world music cultures.

Cyril Moshkow,

editor, Jazz.Ru

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