BEATA HLAVENKOVÁ (b. 1978)
Beata Hlavenková – Czech pianist, vocalist, composer, arranger and producer – is one of the most distinctive female musicians with her own unmistakable cross-genre sound. Her main guiding force is courage – to experiment, to seek unconventional harmonies and arrangements. Free of genre restrictions and leaning on her deep knowledge of jazz, modern classical music, pop and indie folk – in all her musical projects she weaves together a sensitive and clearly focused interpretation.
Her credits include several solo albums and prestigious music awards. She collaborates extensively with Czech and global musicians, composes film and theatre scores, creates song arrangements for big symphonic orchestras – in the centre of all her endevours is “a musical spark that never fades away.”
She studied music composition at the Janáček Conservatory in Ostrava, Czech Republic, followed up with three years at the Ježek Conservatory in Prague and finished her studies with a master’s degree in composition, jazz composition and arrangement from the University of Massachusetts in 2004. Her first album of jazz compositions was the result of S’aight project established with guitarist (and husband) Patrik Hlavenka (a.k.a. Patrick Karpentski). From 2006 to 2013 she was the leader of her jazz trio. Since 2013, when her Theodoros album was released, she has performed mostly as a solo artist in Czech Republic and abroad. Very original and long-term collaborations are with Lenka Dusilová – Eternal Seekers (featuring Clarinet Factory) on two albums entitled Baromantika. Simoultaneously she has collaborated on various projects and with distinguished musicians, such as Iva Bittová, Jiří Havelka, David Ondříček, David Koller, Vladivojna La Chia, VerTeDance, among others.
Her first solo album Joy for Joel was recorded in USA in 2009, followed by Theodoros (received Czech Music Award – Anděl in the jazz and blues category), Scintilla and most recently Bethlehem, which confirms that Beata is able to make entirely fresh discoveries in such traditional material as Christmas carols. One of her most successful album to date is the double album for children Pishlik´s Stories (Pišlické příběhy) made in collaboration with the author Filip Rychlebský.
From the very beginning of her musical career she has also laid emphasis on teaching. She now teaches at New York University in Prague, after the Ježek Conservatory and JAMU in Brno where she, together with her husband Patrick, established the first university course in the Czech Republic for jazz music. Music education, in her own words, should „involve teaching real musicianship and lay greater stress on developing what a musician can do best, what fits them most and what brings the most joy and satisfaction, which naturally does not mean less hard work or less ambition.“
“I re-played the album several times to find out if my enthusiasm peters out eventually – but I still believe that this is the one really extraordinary occurrence on the Czech music scene,“ (album Joy For Joel)
Lubomír Dorůžka (leading Czech music critic)
“Pianist and composer Beata Hlavenková made a musical parable about how to exceed the average. Her Scintilla album shines forth on the whole European scene.”
“She demonstrates throughout, remarkable poise between exuberance and introspection, technical virtuosity and stylistic simplicity, conservatory and spontaneity, the pieces showcasing her exquisite timing, delicacy and command of the keys in myriad styles from minimalism to Debussy-esque impressionism with touches of jazz among the many details revealed with each listen. Housed in a handsome calendar with images of extracted piano parts, the album’s context is complete and compelling, and nothing is overdone in deed or sentiment, making it safe to conclude that Hlavenková’s gift is our gift also.” (album Theodoros)
Stuart Marshall (Velká Británie)
“I’ve been listening to the recorded output of Beata Hlavenková for a number of years now. I was first introduced to her work via the album Theodoros by my mastering engineer, Tony Cousins, a man with impeccable taste, and it struck me as a rare example of someone working between genres, with a beautifully innate, but restrained, melodicism, extraordinary acuity, and remarkable, seemingly effortless, dexterity. Her performance on that album, although not derivative in any way, reminded me a little of Sakamoto’s earlier piano stylings, possibly in its diversity and aesthetics as much as anything, which is a rare comparison for me to make, a compliment I couldn’t afford many pianists.
Since that time Beata and I have communicated frequently and I’ve kept abreast of her work as composer, instrumentalist, orchestrator and, more recently, vocalist. Her talent allows her to excel in a variety of music genres whilst her own work tends to defy clear definition.
I remain curious as to where her, as yet untapped potential, will take Beata from here.”
“Bethlehem is an album that will enter in history due to its tenderness, humility, desire and unbridled joy. Her humanness is palpable, the atmosphere absolutely unique. To enter the music world of Beata Hlavenková is to stare mystery and miracle face to face.”
Je to jako nanášet vrstvy barev na obraz, přirovnává tvůrčí proces při nahrávání svého nového alba Beata Hlavenková Article in Czech - Ego! here Začala u klasiky, ale brzy přešla k jazzu a dnes se pohybuje mezi hudebními žánry. Její cesta vedla přes začátky v církevní...
The whole article in Czech at Novinky.cz here Zpívající klavíristka a skladatelka Beata Hlavenková potěší v pondělí 4. února od 19.30 hodin návštěvníky pražského Anežského kláštera. Představí sólový klavírní recitál v cyklu Hybatelé rezonance, v němž nabídne svou...
The concert programme will introduce my current works, with both instrumental compositions and, for instance, a setting of the poems of Bohuslav Reynek.
The art of concise presentations.
PechaKucha Night, now in over 1,000 cities, was devised in Tokyo in February 2003 as an event for young designers to meet, network, and show their work in public.
Read the interview in Czech - Fullmoonzine.cz Miluju zhudebňování textů VERONIKA MIKULOVÁ | ČLÁNKY / ROZHOVORY | 15.03.2018 Šarmantní dáma české nadžánrové scény Beata Hlavenková je otevřená a vypráví stejně libě, jako hraje. Načaly jsme více témat, než se dá za...
Last evening in January performed Beata in Czech Radio Olomouc
Interview here: http://media.rozhlas.cz/_audio/03968728.mp3 http://media.rozhlas.cz/_audio/03968728.mp3
whole interview here (only in Czech) sobota, 06 leden 2018 16:07 by Martin Faix V předvánočním čase proběhl pro musicweb.cz rozhovor s českou klavíristkou a skladatelkou Beatou Hlavenkovou, která patří mezi nejvýraznější tváře současné jazzové scény. Beata...
read the article (only in Czech) here
Watch the document (in Czech) on Czech TV: http://www.ceskatelevize.cz/ivysilani/11685027707-kultura/217411058240034
Let´s go to Bethlehem - Christmas carrols played by Beata Hlavenková watch on Czech TV 4. 12. 2017
Read the review (Czech language only) at Jazzport.cz Maraton hudby Brno, 11.8.2017, Sono Centrum
“She cooperates with Czech and world known musicians and ensembles, composes movie soundtracks, arranges songs for symphonic orchestras, releases solo albums and wins prestigious music award.” Article in Czech here watch the movie here 24. 4. 2017 12:02, autor:...
Brno město hudby – interview Milan Tesař
Beata Hlavenková: Scintilla je všechno to, za co jsem vděčná 30. března 2016 Jazz, Aktuality, Alternativní hudba Autor: Milan Tesař Skladatelka a pianistka Beata Hlavenková si za své nové autorské album Scintilla právem vysloužila nominaci na cenu Anděl v jazzové...
Nechat svou jiskru zářit. Beata Hlavenková v severských mlhách nezabloudila BEATA HLAVENKOVÁ | FOTO: JIŘÍ STARHA – ANIMAL MUSIC Pianistka a skladatelka Beata Hlavenková natočila hudební podobenství o překonávání průměrnosti. Její album Scintilla (Jiskra) opravdu...
Read and listen here Tomáš S. Polívka V nové suitě Scintilla, žánrově navazující na pásmo Theodoros, spolupracuje Beata Hlavenková se skandinávskými i americkými muzikanty. Ale především vytvořila svůj skladatelský majstrštyk, který volíme Albem týdne....
Read the interview here:
On Theodoros, Beata Hlavenková is turning twelve months into twelve subjective stories.
Life as a professional musician can be hard these days. With children, meanwhile, it must seem to be almost impossible. For Czech one-woman-army Beata Hlavenková – she’s a pianist, highly respected improviser, renowned composer, producer and arranger all at once – the birth of her first son turned out to be a godsend, however. Not only would it inspire her to record the first album under her own name, Joy For Joel, a collection of lush, sumptuous and epically laid-out compositions for a seven-headed jazz band. But it would also help her focus on what’s really important:
Beata Hlavenková has right women´s intuition. You might expect she will continue on jazz journey, which was settled on her debut album Joy For Joel. Or cooperatin with a big ensemble she was thinking of recently. No way. Based on Christmas impulse she released intimate piano album – determined as a crossover among classical and pop. It is worthy when a woman listen to her own instict.
Interview for Ostravan.cz (in Czech) read more here
Author: Milan Bátor
Beata Hlavenková je nepřehlédnutelnou osobností české hudby. Klavíristka, skladatelka a aranžérka vydala nedávno vynikající album Theodoros, které už deník Ostravan.cz představil v recenzi. S Beatou jsme si nyní povídali o hudbě a o novém cédéčku, které ji představuje v úplně jiné podobě. K poslechu a ke zpříjemnění čtení přinášíme i ukázku z nového alba.
BEATA HLAVENKOVÁ released a new solo CD „THEODOROS“ listen online (in Czech): http://files.radio1.cz/files/hudba/rozhovory-2013/r1-int-2013-10-29-beata-hlavenkova.mp3 Klavíristka a skladatelka BEATA HLAVENKOVÁ, která je jednou z vůdčích osobností české jazzové...
Interview (in Czech) on Czech TV – Česká televize ČT24 – Před půlnocí – 1.3.2010 – Before midnight
Interview for Prague Newspaper Joy For Joel. Read the interview in Czech here: