Pianist Igor Bril's tour of the United States in 1988 with his quartet helped show Americans that, in addition to avant-garde music and some dixieland, bebop was alive in the Soviet Union. Bril had led a trio as early as the mid-1960's and, although jazz was officially discouraged at home, he has managed to play jazz throughout much of his life. He worked with bands led by Yuri Saulsky (1966-69), Aleksey Kozlov and German Luk'yanow before putting together his own septet (1972-81) and a quintet that toured throughout the USSR, Communist Europe and Cuba. He has also been a jazz educator in his homeland since 1969. After extensive arrangements, Igor Bril and his quartet (with saxophonist Alexander Oseichuk, bassist Victor Dvoskin and guitarist Alexei Kuznetsov) were able to tour the United States in late 1988 as part of a cultural exchange program with the U.S.S.R. Their final American appearance at the Village Gate, was recorded and later released as a CD by Mobile Fidelity. Bril had also made a few records for the Russian Melodija label as early as 1965. Surprisingly with the fall of communism, not much has been heard from Igor Bril outside of Russia in recent times.
Share this page