Roman Rofalski is a brilliant, versatile and thoughtful pianist.
“My parents are both teachers who have never been professional musicians but who have always been interested in music. When I was ten years old, they gave me the choice of learning guitar or piano. I decided on the latter, as my father strummed a few chords as a hobby, and I wanted naturally to be different.”
Roman as a teenager played rock music, produced techno and wanted really to be a star in these musical genres. Highly talented, he went on to study classical piano at the Hanover University for Music, Drama & Media. “At that time, as was often the case, I studied classical piano but listened to jazz music. Bill Evans was my great idol. Now, as I work more in the field of improvised music, I hear a lot of classical pieces.” An accomplished classical concert pianist by his mid-twenties, he later took his jazz masters in New York. As Roman explains: “I had a bit of a crisis with classical piano playing. As a concert pianist you have to be one hundred percent behind any music you interpret. In the search for a musical form of expression you have to include your own background. My roots lie with Shostakovich, Schubert and Beethoven, but also with Herbie Hancock, Foo Fighters and Electronic Dance Music. From there it is a long process that is still going on in my own music and that is still something special. This is not the usual path for a jazz musician. I search for new challenges and am ever curious in incorporating the different styles.”
Roman Rofalski gives free reign to his musical language in his new album, integrating abstract rhythmic and harmonic ideas from contemporary classical music with jazz.