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Cory Smythe

Astoria, NY      

Pianist Cory Smythe has worked actively with pioneering artists in new, improvisatory, and classical music, including drummer/composer Tyshawn Sorey, violinist Hilary Hahn, and composers from Anthony Braxton to Zosha Di Castri. His own music suggests idiosyncratic curations of these varied involvements, a boundless reorganizing of musical materials into unique sound worlds. 

Smythe has been featured at the Newport Jazz, Wien Modern, Nordic Music Days, and Darmstadt festivals, as well as at Lincoln Center’s Mostly Mozart, where he was recently invited to premiere new work created in collaboration with trumpeter Peter Evans and pianist Craig Taborn. He has performed across the United States, Europe, and Asia, garnering praise for “the ferocity and finesse of his technique” (Washington Post).

His recent release A U T O TROPHS comprises original pieces for piano and electronics and features guest appearances by saxophonist Steve Lehman. Smythe’s first record Pluripotent was praised by pianist Jason Moran, who called it “hands down one of the best solo recordings I’ve ever heard”. Alongside Ms. Hahn, Smythe was the recipient of a Grammy award for the double-disc In 27 Pieces: the Hilary Hahn Encores.

Smythe is a longtime member of the International Contemporary Ensemble, a New York based collective of performers and composers, and one of the leading new music ensembles in the U.S. He has contributed to and collaborated in the construction of numerous premieres, including recent world premieres of solo piano music by composer John Zorn. Smythe has been a featured guest and/or soloist with Milwaukee’s Present Music, the Boston-based Firebird and Radius ensembles, Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s MusicNOW, and the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players. He is the pianist in Tyshawn Sorey’s Alloy Trio, whose weeklong residency at the Village Vanguard was listed in a 2015 roundup of “Best U.S. Culture” in The Guardian.