Anca Parghel in 2008
|Birth name||Anca Simion|
|Born||September 16, 1957|
|Origin||Câmpulung Moldovenesc, Romania|
|Died||December 5, 2008
|Genres||Jazz, opera (bel canto), classical music, Romanian ethnic music, techno-pop (later in life)|
|Occupations||Musician, composer, teacher (bel canto and piano, harmony, vocal jazz), choir conductor, arranger, recording artist|
Intercont Music 1994–1997
Acoustic Music 1998-2000s
||This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (October 2010)|
Anca Parghel (born September 16, 1957, Câmpulung Moldovenesc – died December 5, 2008, Timişoara) was a Romanian jazz artist, was a singer (jazz, be-bop, samba, bel canto) who excelled in scat, improvisation and vocal percussion. She claimed to be a polyglot, speaking seven different languages, including English, German, Portuguese and her native Romanian.
Born to a poor family she began singing at the age of three and was up onstage quickly as a prodigy child. She also sang in her church choir.
She left home at age 14 to study at the Music High School in Iaşi, later attending the Iaşi Conservatory which she graduated in 1981 (primary instrument piano, secondary: bel canto). However, since jazz was not exactly popular nor officially encouraged in this part of the world living behind the Iron Curtain, Anca studied jazz on her own. At the age of 18 she married painter Virgiliu Parghel (divorced 2001), with whom she had two sons, Ciprian and Tudor.
Anca Parghel taught music for a living in Suceava (Bucovina) at the local Arts high-school before turning to a professional singing career (circa 1989). She was a Professor of vocal jazz at the Brussels Royal Conservatory and the Lemmens Conservatory in Leuven (1997–2002). She lived in Brussels for 8 years before making a triumphant return to her home country around 2004–2005. Academically, she wrote a dissertation about the improvisation of Charlie Parker. As a music instructor and choir conductor she taught many generations of aspiring singers and professional musicians, and led many workshops across Europe in Bucharest, Chisinau, Brussels/Namur, in Germany and England. She toured extensively in Europe, mostly playing in local clubs in Germany, Holland, Belgium, France, Italy, Spain, Austria and Switzerland.
She performed in Canada (most notably at the Rimouski Jazz Festival 2003 where she preceded and eclipsed famed French diva Anne Ducros (cf. Rimouski local press, in early September 2003 reporting on "Rimouski Festi Jazz") and in the United States (2003–2006). She performed on-stage and recorded with well-known jazz performers such as Larry Coryell, Jon Hendricks, Billy Hart, Archie Shepp, Claudio Roditi, John Engels, Jean-Louis Rassinfosse, Philippe Catherine, Eric Legnini, Peter Herbolzheimer, Peter Hertmans, Aldo Romano, Marc Levine, Gustavo Bergalli, Pierre van Dormael, John Ruocco, John Dankwooth, Paolo Radoni, Bruno Castellucci, Thomas Stanco, Hein van der Geyn, Ron van Rossum, Ricardo Del Fra, Felix Simtaine, Norma Winstone, Stephane Galland, Theo de Jong, Pierre Vaiana, Charles Loos, Ivan Paduart, Decebal Badila, Mark Griffith, Mircea Tiberian, Klaus Ignatzek, Rob Radna, the Romanian Radio Big-Band, bassist Christopher Dean Sullivan and percussionist Michael T.A. Thompson. Anca Parghel made occasional, unannounced late-night jam appearances in jazz clubs in New York City where she played with the local bands led by Pat Higgins at the "Lennox Lounge", "St. Nick's Pub" or by Manny Duran at Cleopatra's Needle. Her concert in Danville, Virginia at the North Theater on November 10, 2006 was played to an enchanted full house and created a local sensation (cf. Danville, VA press).
Anca Parghel also recorded an electro-pop album in 2007 and submitted the tune "Brasil" to National Selection Contest 2008 for Eurovision. The song was not selected, but "Brasil" gained high commercial success in Romania and in Europe.
Parghel died from complications of breast cancer. She appeared on stage just one month prior to her death.
- Tinerii dansează (Electrecord, 1986)
- Soul, My Secret Place (Blue Flame, 1987)
- Magic Bird (cu Mircea Tiberian) (Electrecord, 1990)
- Indian Princess (Blue Flame, 1990)
- Octet Ost (Amadeo, 1990)
- Ron und Tania (Polydor, 1991)
- Is That So? (Koala, 1992)
- Airballoon (Nabel, 1992)
- Beautiful Colours (Nabel, 1993)
- Carpathian Colours (Nabel, 1994)
- Jazz, My Secret Soul (Intercont Music, 1994)
- Indian Princess (Jazz Specials Edition) (Miramar 1995)
- Noapte albă de crăciun / White Christmas Night (Prima Club, 1994)
- Midnight Prayer (Intercont Music, 1996)
- Primal Sound (Acoustic Music, 1999)
- Zamorena (feat. Tom Boxer; Roton, 2008)
- Brasil (Re-release of Zamorena album, following the success of Brasil, a single from Zamorena) (ft. Tom Boxer and Fly Project; Roton, 2009)