Oleg Butman and Natalia Smirnova are the most passionate, harmoniou and musically well-balanced couple on the Russian jazz scene.
The musicians convey the chemistry between them to the audience as well as their onstage musical partners and this ignites the sparks of passion in them making this for which the couple is famous.
Their first album named “Passion” was released in 2009 under the IBMG label. It’s been a huge hit and a top-selling album on the label. Their next album «Runway” made the top 10 of iTunes downloads in the Jazz category in 2013. Their third album called «Piano Trio From Russia. Vol.2» (2013] was ordered by a music producer for the Japanese market. The LP has been re-released 4 times and the sales have been extremely successful
Their latest album «Moment of Happiness” (2017) is a totally new experience with Natalia singing her first songs in Russian revealing that she is not only a virtuoso pianist but also a professional vocalist with a beautiful and tender timbre and a four-octave vocal range. Some instrumental compositions also include vocalizations and scat singing on top of piano solos.
The Butman-Smirnova duo has collaborated with many world stars such as Eric Marienthal, Randy Brecker, Donny McCaslin, Steve Turre, Gregory Porter, Mike Rodriguez, Danton Boiler, Essiet Essiet, Wayne Escoffery, Leon Foster Thomas and Mark Whitfield.
Their music goes beyond mainstream jazz to include Jungle, Funk, Latin, Swing and even some unusual time signatures. At the same time, their catchy melodies, consistent forms and ideas clearly expressed in their solos make Oleg’s and Natalia’s music easy to understand. Their programs are complemented with original arrangements of jazz vocal standards.
Matthew Dwonszyk — Bassist, Composer, Educator.
Born in Hartford CT, Dwonszyk started playing the electric bass at the age eleven. In high school, he picked up the upright bass while attending the Greater Hartford Academy of Performing Arts and soon started attending the Artist Collective after school program founded by the legendary Jazz Saxophonist/Composer, Jackie McLean. Dwonszyk continued his collegiate studies at the Jackie McLean Institute of Jazz studying with world-renowned bassist Nat Reeves. He graduate and continued his studies at Suny Purchase where he received a Masters in Music in 2015. Dwonszyk currently lives in Brooklyn and is an active bassist in New York. He has performed at the JVC Jazz Festival in NYC, the Baikal Jazz Festival (Yakutsk, Siberia), the NYC Winter Jazz Festival, Litchfield Jazz Festival, Hartford Jazz Festival, Jazz & Colors Festival (Metropolitan Museum of Art), The Kennedy Center, Smalls Jazz Club, Dizzy’s Coca Cola Club, The Blue Note, Smoke Jazz Club and the Fat Cat. Dwonszyk has performed with Harold Mabern, Larry Willis, David Hazeltine, Anthony Wonsey, Rick Germanson, Pete Malinverni, Steve Wilson, Abraham Burton, Javon Jackson, Gary Smulyan, Bennie Wallace, Wayne Escoffery, Mike Diruboo, Myron Walden, John Farnsworth, Joe Farnsworth, Winard Harper, Joe Strasser, Eddie Henderson, Jumaane Smith, Wallace Roney, Terell Stafford, Steve Davis, Steve Turre, Freddie Hendrix and Duane Eubanks.