Foto: Café Smagløs
Thorbjørn Stefansson Trio (DE/DK)
Julius Gawlik (t-sax), Thorbjørn Stefansson (b), Marius Wankel (drm)
German avant-garde meets American swing
Thorbjørn Stefansson Trio is a Berlin-based band led by Danish bassist Thorbjørn Stefansson.
He is joined by Julius Gawlik on tenor saxophone and Marius Wankel on drums. Both are well-known figures on the German jazz scene and have played with numerous major European acts. Julius Gawlik most recently with Jim Black and NDR Bigband. Marius Wankel most recently with Wanja Slavin and Uli Kempendorff.
The band draws inspiration from both German avant-garde and American swing traditions. Hence, the music can also be considered an attempt to bring these two expressions together.
The original compositions attempt to create a new musical framework while keeping both feet firmly planted on the ground. Friendship and humanity in the music come first and create an energy that can be felt by audience members and musicians alike.
Bassist Thorbjørn Stefansson grew up in Aarhus, but studied jazz for two years at Skurups Folkhögskola in Sweden and then at Jazz-Institut Berlin, where he quickly became an integral part of the local scene. Since then, he has played with several major German and international names and received the JIB-Jazzpreis for outstanding soloist in 2021.
Saxophonist and clarinetist Julius Gawlik lives in Berlin where he became part of the jazz scene after completing his studies at Jazz-Institut Berlin. In 2014, he received the Outstanding Soloist Scholarship from Temple University Philadelphia, and in 2019 he received the JIB-Jazzpreis for outstanding soloist. In 2021, Julius became a permanent part of the prestigious NDR Bigband as first tenor and has been part of several projects with both local and international acts such as Jim Black, Jeff Ballard, Tim Hagans, Niels Klein, Johannes Lauer, and Rainer Böhm.
Marius Wankel is a drummer based in Berlin. After studying at the conservatory in Würzburg with Bill Elgart and Bastian Hütte, he moved to Berlin to continue his studies at Jazz-Institut, among others with Heinrich Köbberling and Greg Cohen. Marius Wankel is an active part of the German jazz scene with bands in Leipzig, Berlin, and Munich. He has played all over Germany, as well as in Luxembourg, Romania, and Denmark.
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