Czech Jazz WorkShop Prague 2013

Student's comments:

Valery Ponomarev (USA)


Born in Moscow, Russia, Jazz trumpeter Valery Ponomarev came to the U.S. in 1973, American Citizen since 1979, worked with Art Blakey & the Jazz Messengers for 4 years. With the Messengers, he performed at major concert halls, clubs, and festivals all over the world and recorded 11 albums. He also made numerous television appearances with the Messengers in Europe, Japan, and Brazil. In the United States he has made television appearances on "To Tell The Truth," on the PBS network, National Geographic Today, and CNN. He performed at the Clifford Brown Memorial Concert in Wilmington, Delaware, 1991, which featured the music of the legendary Max Roach/Clifford Brown Quintet with Max Roach (leader) on drums, Harold Land, tenor sax, George Morrow, bass, Sam Dockery, piano, and Valery Ponomarev, trumpet.

Mr. Ponomarev also traveled and recorded with Benny Golson, Joe Henderson, Jimmy Cobb, Mark Gross, Don Braden, Curtis Fuller, Charles McPherson, Ralf Moor, Dennis Irwin, Kenny Washington, Kevin Eubanks, Duke Ellington Orchestra under Mercer Ellington and Paul Ellington, Arturo O'Farril Afro Cuban Jazz Big Band and many others.

Recorded 8 solo albums, most of which were rated at the top billing.

His book "On the Flip Side of Sound" generated numerous most favorable comments and reviews by the absolute best in music business.

A 52 minute documentary Trumpeter from Russia by E.Topol, after this book, has been awarded Gold Prize at the Huston, TX International Film Festival 2011.

His life is also documented in a short film "Messenger from Russia", which was shown on National Geographic channel several times. Film

In addition to playing with his quintet Mr.Ponomarev leads and writes for his big Band VPJBB a.k.a. “Our Father Who Art Blakey”. The VPJBB performed at Dizzy’s, Iridium, Jazz Standard, other venues in NYC and appears regularly at the legendary “Zinc Bar” in the Village.


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