The American pianist, Addison Frei, has won the Parmigiani Montreux Jazz Piano Solo Competition.
Legendary Chicago jazzman, Ramsey Lewis, presided over the jury which also counted in its number, Jeff Dessibourg, Dominik Deuber, Joji Hattori, Philippe Pellaud & François Carrard, President of the Montreux Jazz Festival Foundation.
Despite fierce competition, the mood among the candidates remained remarkably good-natured, so much so that as soon as the prize giving ended, the three laureates graciously improvised a piece for 6 Hands on the competition piano.
1st Prize: Addison Frei
This is not the first accolade that has been bestowed upon the New York based pianist, who is originally from Kansas. He has won first prize in several competitions, including the UNISA International Piano Competition that took place in Pretoria in 2016 and the American Jazz Pianist Competition that took place in Florida in 2015. The young prodigy has also toured and recorded with Janis Siegel, founder of the jazz group Manhattan Transfer. Of the 5 albums he has already released, Frei recorded three with AMP Trio with whom he recently toured Japan.
2nd and 3rd place were respectively accorded to the American, Billy Test, and the Russian, Andrey Marukhin.
All three laureates will participate in the 4th Montreux Jazz Academy that will take place from 23rd February to 3rd March 2018.