Piotr Orzechowski

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Piotr Orzechowski
Piotr Orzechowski, 2012
Piotr Orzechowski, 2012
Background information
Birth namePiotr Orzechowski
Also known asPianohooligan
Born (1990-12-31) 31 December 1990 (age 30)
Kraków, Poland
LabelsUniversal Music Poland, Decca Classics

Piotr Orzechowski (born 31 December 1990, Kraków), also known by his stage name Pianohooligan, is a Polish jazz pianist and composer. He is a graduate of the Berklee College of Music in Valencia and a winner of the Montreux Jazz Piano Competition and Jazz Hoeilaart,[1][2] hailed by the critics as "the most creative and uncompromising young Polish jazz artist."[3]


He was born in Kraków, Poland. In parallel with his regular classical education, he was multiply awarded at different international jazz competitions such as "Jazz Juniors", "Jazz nad Odrą" or "Krokus Jazz". Since his win at Montreux Jazz Solo Piano Competition 2011 in Switzerland, where he was awarded the 1st prize, he has been touring all over the world. He performs successfully within the realms of classical and improvised music, often blurring the boundaries between genres.

This trait is also manifested on his solo debut album Experiment: Penderecki (Decca/Universal, 2012), which was an attempt to explore the core of the style developed by the Polish composer by converting Krzysztof Penderecki's orchestral structures into solo piano. This was the first instrumental album from Poland recorded on prestigious London label Decca. Similarly his second solo album, 15 Studies for the Oberek (Decca/Universal, 2014) – a musical analysis of the various elements of the Polish oberek dance – stylistically remains suspended between folk music, contemporary music and jazz.

He is the leader of High Definition Quartet. The ensemble's debut Hopasa (EmArcy Records/Universal, 2013) is comprising the pianist's own compositions, as well as Bucolics (ForTune, 2015), presenting Orzechowski's original arrangements of music by Witold Lutosławski, which soon after its premiere won a place on Jazz Forum magazine's prestigious list of the best Polish albums of all time.

Apart from his solo activity as a jazz pianist, he also performs with leading Polish orchestras such as the Sinfonia Varsovia, the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra in Katowice, the AUKSO Chamber Orchestra, and the Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra. With Marcin Masecki and the Capella Cracoviensis, he recorded an album entitled Bach Rewrite (Decca/Universal, 2013) featuring J.S. Bach's harpsichord concertos performed on a Rhodes electroacoustic piano.

The artist has collaborated with such prominent contemporary music composers as Philip Glass, Steve Reich, and Krzysztof Penderecki. He has toured with highly esteemed jazz musicians, including Randy Brecker, Avishai Cohen, Victor Mendoza, and Michał Urbaniak. He has also contributed to the projects of such great figures in the world of music as Adrian Utley of Portishead, Carlos Zíngaro, Agata Zubel, Skalpel, William Basinski, Fennesz, and Krzysztof Knittel.

In 2017 he has released his third solo piano double-album '24 Preludes & Improvisations' (Decca/Universal). This monumental work, alluding in its form to Johann Sebastian Bach's 24 Preludes and Fugues, by using as examples short musical structures (Preludes), and equally short but far more complex improvisational creations (Improvisations), artist intends to expound a new way of understanding the notion of jazz and self-expression in music.


Piotr Orzechowski (right), Philip Glass and Maki Namekawa at the Sacrum Profanum Festival, Kraków, 2014

Solo piano

Year Album Record label
2012 Experiment: Penderecki Decca Classics  –  –
2014 15 Studies For The Oberek Decca Classics  –  –
2017 24 Preludes & Improvisations Decca Classics  –  –

with High Definition Quartet

Year Album Record label
2013 Hopasa EmArcy Records  –  –
2015 Bukoliki For Tune  –  –
2019 Dziady Polish Music Publishing House  –  –


Year Album Record label
2013 Bach Rewrite (with Marcin Masecki & Capella Cracoviensis) Decca Classics  –  –
2014 Weird Glitches (with Stephen McHale) Stephen McHale Music  –  –
2014 Elapse (with Daniel Toledo Trio) Universidad San Francisco de Quito  –  –
2016 PIANO.PL (with Dorota Miśkiewicz) Universal Music Polska  –  –
2016 H. M. Górecki. Concerto for harpsichord and string orchestra (with Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra) Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra  –  –
2017 H. Wars. Symphonic Works (with Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra) Polish Radio  –  –
2019 Works for Rhodes Piano & Strings (with Aukso Chamber Orchestra) Polish Music Publishing House  –  –

See also[edit]


  1. ^ jazz.blogspot.com (2011). "polish-jazz: Piotr Orzechowski wins at Montreux..." polish-jazz.blogspot.com. Retrieved 23 October 2011.
  2. ^ Tamarkin, Jeff (2011). "Jazz Articles: Montreux Jazz Solo Piano Competition Won by 20-Year-Old Pole — By Jeff Tamarkin — Jazz Articles". jazztimes.com. Archived from the original on 6 September 2012. Retrieved 23 October 2011.
  3. ^ 12on14club.com (2016). "Pianohooligan "15 Studies For The Oberek"". 12on14club.com. Retrieved 7 October 2016.

External links[edit]