Shai Maestro

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Shai Maestro
Background information
Born (1987-02-05) February 5, 1987 (age 36)
Occupation(s)Musician, composer, bandleader
LabelsECM, Sound Surveyor, Laborie

Shai Maestro (born February 5, 1987)[1] is an Israeli jazz pianist. Since his debut with his own trio in 2011, Shai has shaped a strong and unique personal identity and has portrayed an incredible musical fluidity. Shai is currenlty active as bandleader, solo-artist and sideman.


Shai Maestro began playing classical piano at the age of five and after listening to Keith Jarret and Oscar Peterson at the age of eight, improvisational music and especially jazz, became a main focus point in his playing and style. He turned down offers from prestigious American music schools and at nineteen he joined the band of double bassist Avishai Cohen, where he co-wrote the famous album Gently Disturbed. For five years he celebrated success at the best known festivals and venues with Cohen and drummer Mark Guiliana. Shai moved to Brooklyn, New York, where he formed his own trio in 2011 and recorded six albums, which marked his presence as a unique voice and artist in the world of music today.

With his latest two albums on the renown label ECM Records, produced by Manfred Eicher, Shai Maestro instantly became part of the line of famous jazz pianists who have defined the label: Keith Jarrett, Paul Bley and Chick Corea. With a pure form of improvisation, joyful interplay, emotion and energy, Shai and his current close-knit quartet play with all kinds of influences, which come together in one-of-a-kind evolving high-energy concerts and inspirational recordings. Cinematic, challenging yet accessible and recognizable in every emotion, Shai’s most recent album, Human (ECM), was largely written and recorded during the Covid-19 pandemic and released in 2021. On this album, Maestro presents a quartet, bringing the music to a new level yet again. The quartet features Ofri Nehemya on drums, Peruvian bassist Jorge Roeder and US trumpeter Philip Dizack.

Combining extensive worldwide touring, Shai signed with Sony for worldwide publishing and began to expand his artistic creativity and palette: scoring music for films, writing and arranging his music for large orchestra’s, producing (a.o. Gilad Hekselman’s album Fast Moving Century) and writing for renowned contemporary pop and electronica artists. Highlights include the invitation to perform a commissioned program with the world famous Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra (conducted by Keitaro Harada) at Tokyo Metropolitan Theater. In the summer of 2022 Shai presented his new full scale orchestral work – “Alice” written for the national Orquestra de Câmara Portuguesa and his quartet, conducted by Pedro Carneiro.


As leader[edit]

Year recorded Year released Title Label Notes
2012 2012 Shai Maestro Trio Laborie Trio, with Jorge Roeder (bass), Ziv Ravitz (drums)
2013 The Road to Ithaca Laborie Trio
2015 Untold Stories Motema Trio, with Jorge Roeder (bass), Ziv Ravitz (drums)[2]
2016 The Stone Skipper Sound Surveyor Most tracks trio, with Jorge Roeder (bass), Ziv Ravitz (drums); some tracks with guests: Gretchen Parlato, Neli Andreeva, Kalnina Andreeva, Theo Bleckmann, Mika Ravitz (vocals)[3]
2018 2018 The Dream Thief ECM Trio, with Jorge Roeder (bass), Ofri Nehemya (drums)[4]
2020 2021 Human ECM Quartet, with Philip Dizack (trumpet), Jorge Roeder (bass), Ofri Nehemya (drums)[5]

As sideman[edit]


  1. ^ "Shai Maestro Biography".
  2. ^ "Untold Stories". AllAboutJazz. Retrieved October 15, 2022.
  3. ^ "The Stone Skipper". AllAboutJazz. Retrieved October 15, 2022.
  4. ^ "Shai Maestro: The Dream Thief (ECM 2616)". ecmreviews. June 30, 2019. Retrieved October 15, 2022.
  5. ^ "Shai Maestro: Human (ECM 2688)". ecmreviews. January 3, 2022. Retrieved October 15, 2022.

External links[edit]