Born in 1959, student of Gary Hoffman and Janos Starker at the University of Indiana, cellist Eric Longsworth immersed himself in jazz with David Baker, the renowned American teacher. Eric's classical training lead him to play professionally for four years in various orchestras in Houston, Texas, among them the Houston Symphony and Texas Chamber Orchestra.
Drawn to other musical possibilities, he furthered his studies at Banff (Alberta, Canada), where he participated in workshops with Dave Holland, Dave Leibman, John Abercrombie, Steve Coleman, and others. Eric Longsworth, who admits to having always wanted to make music differently, integrated here the tools with which to become an improviser, and decided to leave classical music behind definitively.
He moved to Montreal, where he first was noticed playing in the groups Contrevent and Icarus, before attracting the attention of critics with his first solo album, "I Hear You", in 1997. After participating in numerous and varied shows in Canada, he recorded his second album, "If Trees Could Fly", a duo with bass player Marc Johnson, in 1999.
Eric Longsworth moved to France in 2002, where he presented his third recording, "Sans Souci", a trio with Daniel Mille and Pierre Tanguay. He became more and more involved with the jazz scene in France, participating and leading projects with, among others, Sylvain Luc, Remi Charmasson, Claude Tchamitchian, Xavier Garcia, Francois Verly, and Jean-Charles Richard, and recording "A Ciel Ouvert", his fourth opus as leader. The quartet "A Ciel Ouvert" toured in France and in South America.
"Le Jazz fait son Cirque", an unusual collaboration of music and clowns, played over 150 shows between 2007 and 2010, including the Avignon Off Festival and five weeks at the European Theatre in Paris. Eric shared the compositional and creation credits with Alain Reynaud and Nicolas Bernard, both clowns/musicians with the Compagnie des Nouveaux Nez.
In 2010 Eric met kora player Cherif Soumano, and formed with percussionist/singer Jean-Luc Difraya the World Kora Trio. Their common adventurous spirit, curiosity, and obvious complicity are evident on the group's recording "Korazon" in 2012. The group has toured in France, Canada and in Mexico.
American/Canadian Eric Longsworth, composer and cellist living now in France, is one of those difficult to categorize artists who intermixes styles. Playing the cello like a guitar, a bass, or even a percussion instrument, he prefers the freedom of improvisation and plays often on an electric instrument. Whether bowing, plucking or tapping his instrument's strings, he creates an unusual musical universe somewhere at the juncture of jazz and other musical idioms. His music evokes emotions and images, and narrates stories that touch publics of all kinds, from specialized to mainstream.
The prominent role of improvisation in his playing, underlines his kinship with the world of jazz. Armed with a strong sense of rhythm, this cellist is equally adept at captivating melodies and surprising harmonies.
"A mischievous monologue(…)that resembles nothing ordinary, and that is already a promise in itself!" wrote a critic in Le Monde about Eric's solo.
Eric's current projects include:
World Kora Trio (musique du monde/jazz)
with Cherif Soumano, kora
and Jean-Luc Difray, percussion and voice
Acoustic jazz/folk trio
with Remi Charmasson, guitar
and Bernard Santacruz, bass
with Perrine Mansuy, piano
with Daniel Mille
06 21 35 11 79
Production / Projets de Territoires
Chargée de production
1 Théâtre de Verdure, 26230 Chantemerle lès Grignan
06 23 58 07 36
Association 1901 / licences 2* 1044948/ 3*1044949/ Siret 530 745 504 00015 – APE 9001Z
Edition : CRISTAL Publishing / 05 46 44 96 48
Distributeur : L’AUTRE Distribution
co production de la Cordonnerie de Romans (26) et de Passé Minuit (26)
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ICARUS, de 1990 à 1997 • le Lion d'Or de Montréal • l'Anglicane de Lévis • Festival de jazz de Montréal – Musée d'Art contemporain • Divers spectacles au Québec • Festival de Jazz de Montréal – Musée d'Art contemporain • Festival de Jazz de Boulogne-Billancourt – France • Première partie de Turtle Island String Quartet – Spectrum, Montréal • Festival de Jazz d'Ottawa.
CONTREVENT, de 1989 à 1994 • Festival de Jazz à Vienne – France • Club Soda de Montréal • Tournées au Québec – plus de 80 représentations • Festival Le Chaînon Manquant – Tours, France • Festival international de jazz de Montréal • Festival Québec'Oise – Beauvais-Méru, France • • St-Pierre-et-Miquelon • Festival International de la Louisianne • Festival Franco Ontarien – Ottawa • Festival d'été de Québec • UCLA Campus – Los Angeles • Festival International de Houston • Festival Frostbite – Yukon.