Paul Kirby’s first degree was in maths at Cambridge. Born and brought up in Edinburgh, Paul’s passion is jazz piano and composition. For the past five years, he has been an integral part of the jazz scene in Edinburgh, Scotland and beyond, performing over 1500 gigs both in solo performance or with the Paul Kirby Trio, Camerata Ritmata and Ken Mathieson’s Classic Jazz Orchestra, amongst many others.
Paul is regarded as one of the two most outstanding young jazz pianists in Scotland. He is accomplished in a variety of musical genres and roles - he is considered to be both a wonderful soloist and a supportive and inspiring accompanist. Paul has released two trio records as a leader with German bassist, Martin Zenker, and Chicago drummer, Adam Sorenson.
Paul has studied privately with Jason Moran, George Colligan and Kenny Werner. He is currently studying for a Master of Jazz Piano Performance at the Mason Gross School of Music, Rutgers, New Jersey with distinguished pianist Stanley Cowell.
How the Award Helped
The Dewar Arts Award will help Paul complete the second year of his master’s programme
Since the Award
During his second year of study, Paul lived in Brooklyn to be able to accept invitations to play in some of the iconic jazz venues in NYC. He writes that all his time was taken up by practising or being at school during the day and playing or watching music at night.
Paul successfully graduated with a Master of Music from Rutgers, where he performed an "outstanding recital". He will stay in NYC until the end of 2010, playing at every opportunity, rubbing shoulders with some of his musical heroes and generally soaking up the intense atmosphere of the most exciting city in the world for a young jazz musician.
Thank you for … the wonderful news of my Dewar Arts Award. I am delighted to accept [it] and wish to thank sincerely the trustees.