Part-time Instructor, Music
Simon Sloutsker was born in Moscow, in 1972. He began studying piano at the age of 5 and completed his studies in classical piano at the Russian School of Music by the age of 15. Having a great interest for composition and improvisation, Simon entered a Jazz College in Moscow where he studied jazz piano, jazz theory and harmony and jazz history.
As a young immigrant to Canada, Simon Sloutsker graduated from the Université de Montréal (B.Mus., 1999) and from McGill University (M.Mus., 2001) in jazz performance. He studied with Luc Beaugrand, Reno de Stephano, Jan Jarczyk, Jeff Johnston and Joe Sullivan. Simon has been the leader of a few jazz ensembles and played on various scenes in Montreal and in Paris. He worked along such talents as Jim Doxas, Zack Lober, J.-F. Ouellet, Remi-Jean Leblanc, Alex Côté and other high-ranking Montreal jazz musicians.
As a pianist, Simon was mainly influenced by Bill Evans, Keith Jarrett, Chick Corea, McCoy Tyner. His playing style integrates be-bop and hard-bop elements as well as cool and contemporary jazz and music from Eastern Europe. His remarkable melodic gift allows him to be particularly creative in his improvisations and compositions.
As a composer, Simon draws his inspiration from the works of John Coltrane, Wayne Shorter, Kenny Wheeler, Pat Metheny and from the classical works of J.S. Bach, Chopin, Scriabin, Debussy and Part. His compositional style is deeply rooted in traditional jazz with many openings towards modern music. Simon Sloutsker also wrote for big-bands and string ensembles, for choirs and jazz quartets. In the last decade Simon has written many compositions for voice and jazz ensemble with original lyrics in English, French and Russian.
As a performer, Simon recorded two piano solo albums and one album with a jazz trio featuring outstanding jazz singer Jeri Brown. He has also been active as main pianist in the Jeri Brown Collective.
As a teacher, Simon has developed an original approach to teaching jazz piano, combining elements of classical training with a well studied jazz tradition. He has explored the interdependent relationships between four musical elements: time, rhythm, melody and harmony. The study of these four elements has helped many students to improve their skills of time and rhythm. Simon has been teaching private piano for more than 10 years, leading young musicians to piano mastership.