Kristjan Randalu

August 27, 1978
Member of the Estonian Composers' Union since 2013

Kristjan Randalu is one of the most compelling pianists of his generation, sought after as soloist, collaborator and composer. His music has been described by Jazz Times as an "unnameable exotic land".
Randalu's versatile creative work has brought him to the world’s renowned jazz festivals and major concert halls both as a performer and composer of jazz and classical music.

Born in Estonia Randalu moved to Germany with his family at the age of nine where he studied at the Music Universities in Karlsruhe and Stuttgart with Sontraud Speidel and Paul Schwartz, and with John Taylor in Cologne.
Scholarships led him to the Royal Academy of Music in London (with Django Bates), the Henry Mancini Institute in Los Angeles and the Manhattan School of Music, from which he graduated with a master’s degree in 2006.
His mentors as a composer have been Tõnu Kõrvits, Jaan Rääts, Daniel Schnyder and Erkki-Sven Tüür.

Randalu’s numeorous collaborations include Eivind Aarset, Mathias Eick, Paolo Fresu, Mark Guiliana, Ari Hoenig, Petros Klampanis, Nguyên Lê, Marilyn Mazur, Ben Monder, Nils Petter Molvær, Trygve Seim and Dhafer Youssef.

As a soloist he has performed with renowned orchestras, among them the London Symphony Orchestra, the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, the New Chamber Orchestra of Berlin, the Tallinn Chamber Orchestra and the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra. He has worked with conductors Dennis Russell Davies, Kristjan Järvi, Paavo Järvi, Juha Kangas, Eri Klas, Vince Mendoza and Maria Schneider.

Randalu has performed at the Carnegie Hall and the Lincoln Center in New York, the Berlin Konzerthaus, the London Barbican, the Flagey in Brussels and the Cologne Philharmonic Hall, as well as at North Sea Jazz, Istanbul Jazz Festival, Montreux Jazz Festival, Jazz à Vienne and London Jazz Festival among others.

He has toured in the United States and Canada, across Europe and in Turkey, Korea, Australia, Japan, Russia and Israel.

Randalu's awards include the 2007 Jazz Award of Baden-Wuerttemberg and numerous awards in Estonia: Jazz Artist of the Year in 2011, Annual Music Award of the Cultural Endowment in 2014 and 2023, Jazz Composer of the Year 2018, and the National Culture Prize in 2020.

His discography of over 40 recordings both as soloist and collaborator includes a Grammy nomination in 2006 and Jazz Album of the Year at the 2012 Estonian Music Awards. Randalu's ECM debut "Absence" was released in 2018. His latest recording in duo with Dave Liebman, "Mussorgsky Pictures Revisited" (BMC Records), was listed in "Best of 2020" by The New York City Jazz Record. His album "Sisu" was given the Estonian Music Award 2023 in the category of Jazz Album of the Year.

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