Katz Plaza

The Frank Cunimondo Group

He was born in Pittsburgh and began playing music at the age of 6 studying classical piano. As a teenager he made a transition to jazz. He attended George Westinghouse High School, where other notable jazz musicians had also been students including Ahmad Jamal and Erroll Garner. He later attended Carnegie Tech, which subsequently became Carnegie Mellon University.

 

In his early teens, he began to play professionally at a number of clubs around Pittsburgh. At 19, he toured a number of cities including Atlantic City and Miami. In Pittsburgh, he played at many local jazz haunts, most notably, The Crawford Grill. He often shared a stage with the young George Benson.

 

In the 1950s, Frank Cunimondo moved to New York City where he continued playing professionally and immersed himself into the jazz scene. He eventually returned to Pittsburgh permanently.

 

Read more about Frank here

Joe DeFazio

Joe DeFazio is a local piano expert who founded and incorporated his own piano tuning and repair business in 2004.

David Gurwin

Pianist, composer and arranger David Gurwin began playing the piano at age six and first performed professionally at the age of 14.  He leads The David Gurwin Trio (featuring bassist Mark Perna and drummer Vince Taglieri). In college, David performed as the pianist with the Ohio State Jazz Ensembles and led a trio featuring recording artist Kim Pensyl. Originally from Columbus, Ohio, David has performed as a solo artist and leader of his trio with a variety of other gifted musicians, including guitarist Alan Schulman, bassist Dane Richeson, tenor saxophonist Don Aliquo, Sr. and alto saxophonist Richie Cole. He has recorded two solo albums, …From the Fourth Room and Old Friends, New Acquaintances (which are available at www.davidgurwin.bandcamp.com).

 

 

In addition to being a jazz pianist, David is a nationally recognized entertainment lawyer.  He also is an Adjunct Professor at Carnegie Mellon University, where he teaches a course on Law & the Arts to students in the Master of Arts Management Program. 

Max Leake

Max Leake began his musical training at age six. By the time he was 15, he was working with local Pittsburgh bands and backing up national acts in local supper clubs. At the age of 18, Max was traveling around the country with acts such as the “Ink Spots” and the “Marcels”.

Max spent time playing in show-bands in the Catskill Mountains of New York backing up variety acts,
comediansand singers. He also cruised around the Western hemisphere as a house pianist in the showbands on many different Princess Cruises ships.

In 1985 he released his self-produced album “Buns in the Sun” on Visionary Records, a record label started by Max and MikeHurzon (owner of the “Tracking Station”, an independent record promotion company). The album drew widespread airplay nationally and was reviewed favorably by many newspapers and trade publications.

Max has gone on to produce, compose for and record with dozens of other artists including Mesa Blue Moon recording artist “Tim Eyermann and East Coast Offering”, Heads Up records artist “Kenny Blake”, “Salsamba”, “Billy Price” and the “Balcony Big Band” on Corona Records.

 

 

Read more about Max by clicking here

Jessica Lee

Vocalist Jessica Lee’s musical background includes years of experience performing in blues and jazz clubs,studies with accomplished jazz musicians and classical training. She also adds a rich performance history in spiritual and gospel music to the mix. Her love of R&B, blended with her diverse background and influences, has given Jessica a unique voice and made her a welcome performer at prominent music clubs both locally and nationally.

Jessica’s performances give voice to the up-lifting energy, power and messages that were the trademarks of early artists in gospel, blues, jazz and soul.

 

View Jessica's press kit by clicking here

Louis Schreiber

Lou Schreiber is a very gifted pianist who began playing at the age of three. Lou has been blind since birth, but his family realized early that his hearing and his perfect pitch were exceptional. He would hear music on the radio and toddle over to the piano to play what he heard. Seeing his natural giftedness for music, his Father began teaching him piano at home. At the age of eight, Lou began taking formal lessons at the Western Pennsylvania School for Blind Children and by the eighth grade he was playing out professionally. During his career he has played and sat in with such greats as George Benson, Dizzy Gillespie, Maynard Ferguson and The Four Freshmen. He has also worked with singer Allan Harris in Pittsburgh, Cleveland and New York City. Lou is well known in Pittsburgh for his incredible talent on the piano and woodwinds and has been heard playing at fine establishments around town, such as The LaMont, The Colony, and The William Penn Hotel where he played for eighteen years. He has recorded with many different artists in and around Pittsburgh and could often be heard on our local Jazz station, WQUD. Lou is also a Registered Piano Technician and has been tuning pianos in and around Pittsburgh for 55 years.

Martin Spitznagel

Whether performing the masterworks of Scott Joplin or the score to Star Wars, Martin Spitznagel is truly at home on the piano bench.

​A sought-after performer and decorated composer, he found success early, winning a Yamaha Disklavier at the age of 14 in ​Calliope Media’s nationwide Crazy for Ragtime competition. His entry, chosen from the hundreds of submissions by a panel of judges that included world‐renowned violinist Itzhak Perlman, coincided with the centennial of the birth of ragtime music in 1897.

Despite this early success, Martin was largely self‐guided until 1998, when he met Eastman School of Music pianist and pedagogue Dr. Tony Caramia, who challenged him to “find the surprise” in every performance. 

In 2011, Martin was selected as the Scott Joplin Foundation’s Artist in Residence, and in May he claimed the title “World Champion of Old‐Time Piano Playing ” at the World Championship Old‐Time Piano Playing Contest

In addition to his musical pursuits, Martin holds a B.A. in Creative Writing, a Certificate in Medieval and Renaissance Studies, and an A.S. in Filmmaking. This diverse skill set has enabled him to work on everything from a documentary film about polio with "St. Elmo’s Fire" screenwriter Carl Kurlander to directing his own epic Star Wars fan film, Star Wars: Hunt for the Holocron

Jenny Wilson

The Jenny Wilson Trio is a jazz group that focuses on original music as well as choice classic and contemporary standards.  Jenny Wilson is a composer, pianist, flutist and vocalist.  Originally from Queens, New York, Jenny is a graduate of WVU’s Master of Music Jazz Pedagogy program and has toured in Switzerland, Austria and Germany. Her main compositional influences are Thelonius Monk and Wayne Shorter.  Her piano style is informed by Bill Evans and her connection to his music is also reflected in that like Jenny, Bill was also fine flutist.  Her vocal style is influenced by Shirley Horn and Diana Krall, understated yet swinging.  Jenny performs weekly at venues in Pittsburgh and Reston, VA as well as traveling during the week for concerts and private events.

Bassist Nathan Wilson is Jenny’s husband and also performs with the Squonk Opera from Pittsburgh, PA. He is especially attuned to the melodic style of playing that is a key element to the group sound.

Drummer Kyle Andrews has his Master of Music degree from Bloomington, Indiana and is an instructor at West Virginia Wesleyan College.  He is in demand as a drummer with a great versatility and range in his ability to play with all styles of jazz.

Please reload

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

info@pianodaypgh.com     |     © 2018 by Peter Stumpf, LLC     |     Press Kit