Winner of the Great American Jazz Piano Competition and a former guest on Marian McPartland’s Piano Jazz, pianist/composer/vocalist Deanna Witkowski has been heralded for her “consistently thrilling” playing and her “boundless imagination” (All Music Guide). Moving with remarkable ease between Brazilian, jazz, Afro-Cuban and classical music, Witkowski approaches her work with the heart and technique of a daring improviser. Her most current album, From This Place, features her liturgical jazz and led to a second appearance on National Public Radio’s Weekend Edition Sunday. Her fifth recording, a solo project featuring arrangements that blend Chopin nocturnes with Brazilian and jazz standards, was released in 2013.
In 2012, Witkowski joined Park Avenue Christian Church as Artist-in-Residence/Assistant Musician. Her sacred jazz work (including hymn arrangements, congregational responses, Psalm settings, and other service music) was frequently used in worship at the Park, and her trio played in worship several times per year. For the 2012-13 Arts at the Park season, Witkowski composed “Glistening Lily,” an SATB choral work based on text from Hildegard of Bingen, for the Sanctuary Choir. She also spearheaded a concert celebration of Mary Lou Williams which featured Williams’ complete “Music for Piece” with a 12-voice professional choir of jazz vocalists and instrumental jazz quartet.
Witkowski holds a M.A. in jazz piano performance from the City College of New York and a B.M. in classical piano performance from Wheaton College (IL).
To hear Deanna’s music, visit http://www.deannajazz.com.