Guitarist Stephane Wrembel and His Band Visit Nigeria
Internationally acclaimed guitarist and composer Stephane Wrembel heads to Nigeria next week - bringing his jaw dropping talent, palpable musical rapport with His Band, and vivid and textured compositions to life at a variety of unique public and private performances and workshops as part of the U.S. State Department’s “International Language of Jazz for Peace” program.
For the band’s 10 day “International Language of Peace” trek through Nigeria, Stephane Wrembel and His Band will be guests of the U.S State Department’s Arts Envoy, participating in the program aimed to promote mutual understanding between the American and Nigerian people by providing an opportunity for people in the sometimes troubled Northern Nigeria region to come together through music, and particularly jazz music.
Nigerian performance stops include headlining the Abuja Jazz Festival, visiting the University of Jos, performing for The U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria and guests including senior Nigerian leaders, Nigerian Ministers of State, and other ambassadors as well as alumni of the Fulbright scholar program, the Humphrey Fellows program, and the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP). Wrembel will also lead a variety of workshops throughout the region with local students and musicians. The once in a lifetime cultural music adventure culminates at a celebration for National Day, where Stephane and His Band will present the national anthems for the United States and Nigeria.
“It is an amazing honor to be selected for this program,” Wrembel explains. “Africa is home to the roots of jazz music, having birthed the forefathers of what is now considered an American genre and is celebrated in countless nations around the world. We are very grateful for this opportunity to interact with local Nigerian citizens, musicians, students and children; an experience, no doubt, we will cherish forever.”
Back in The States, where he now calls home, Stephane Wrembel recently served as a guest lecturer at the famed MoMA in New York City. It was a special evening spent discussing late 19th and early 20th century French Impressionism with MoMA’s Larissa Bailiff. An expert on this period and style, Bailiff’s enlightening presentation was complimented by Stephane’s unique perspective by demonstrating relevance between the lessons of the art masters and his own musical exploration. The evening culminated with Stephane’s solo interpretations of French Impressionism through his music.
Stephane Wrembel and His Band have been touring the U.S to ever-expanding crowds. Next stops include the DjangoVegas!, Cape Cod Jazz Festival, Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival, and ELLNORA: The Guitar Festival, with fall 2013 tour stops still to be announced.
About Stephane Wrembel:
Parisian born Wrembel - whose music embraces all styles and influence to create a truly signature sound - is being hailed as one of the world’s most dynamic and inspired players out there today. Wrembel is indeed a standout - not only for his undeniable skills but also for his unparalleled ability to create a unique and vivid listener experience. Here’s what critics are saying:
“A REVELATION” – Rolling Stone Magazine
"Intense and full of charisma." - The New York Times
"One the greatest guitar players I've ever seen ...and I don't say that lightly."
– Relix Magazine
"[Wrembel embodies] a John Coltrane-ish search for a moment of musical nirvana..."
"A truly astonishing talent…" – All About Jazz
2012 was a huge year for Stephane Wrembel. The guitarist released his fourth album, Origins, to critical acclaim; performed his original song "Bistro Fada" (the theme to Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris) at the Academy Awards; made studio visits to NPR Weekend Edition, BBC Radio, WNYC and others; toured across the U.S. and throughout Europe; and helped Gentleman Shaver win a Clio Award for “Best Original Song Used in a Commercial.”
Raised in Fontainebleau, France -- the birthplace of Impressionism and the home of famed gypsy guitarist Django Reinhardt -- Wrembel was shaped by the fertile creative landscape of the area from his very early years. He began with classical piano at age 4 before exploring musical genres such as rock, Django, jazz, country, blues, Indian raga, West African, Middle Eastern and others - embracing the many cultures and musical styles he discovered along the way. His arsenal of influences result in a sound unique to Wrembel; a music without genre.
It's Wrembel's unbounded Impressionist musical style and state-of-mind that captured the attention of director Woody Allen, who most recently recruited him to score the theme for his smash film Midnight in Paris (Wrembel also composed music for Allen’s 2008 Golden Globe winning film Vicky Christina Barcelona). Wrembel’s extraordinary ability to capture, in music, the soul of an image, is invaluable in film scoring. Being able to trigger images - whether universal or personal - in the listener's mind is also a huge part of Wrembel's own musical vision. The element of mystery and freedom his music imparts makes it as impossible to ignore as it is to pin down. Whether rocking a huge festival stage or filling up every breath of air in an intimate club - the experience of seeing Stephane Wrembel and His Band perform live is truly unforgettable.
For tickets and information visit www.stephanewrembel.com