Sylvie Courvoisier

Sylvie Courvoisier ( born November 30, 1968 in Lausanne ) is a Swiss jazz pianist and composer.

Life and work

Courvoisier grew up in Lausanne and started 6 years, guided by her father, an amateur jazz pianist, playing the piano. Until 1994, she studied music at the conservatories in Montreux (Jazz) and Lausanne ( classical). She first worked with her quintet, but also with Enrico Rava, Thomas Chapin, Joachim Kühn, Marc Ducret, Dominique Pifarély and Lucas Niggli. In 1998 she moved to Brooklyn, New York, where she has lived ever since.

Courvoisier is currently leading her quintet Lonelyville and the trio Abaton. It occurs regularly in a duo with her ​​husband, the violinist Mark Feldman, on. She is a member of Mephista, an improvising trio with Ikue Mori and Susie Ibarra, in the quintet by Herb Robertson with Tim Berne, Tom Rainey and Mark Dresser and in a trio with Gebhard Ullmann Essence and Carlos Bica. It also plays in a trio with Ellery Eskelin and Vincent Courtois and in John Zorn's Cobra group. Furthermore, she has worked with Joey Baron, Tony Oxley, Yusef Lateef, Dave Douglas, Joëlle Léandre, Butch Morris, Lotte Anker, Fred Frith, Okkyung Lee, Mark Nauseef and Jacques Demierre.

She has written music for concerts, radio, ballet and theater. Her compositions include " Concerto for electric guitar and chamber orchestra ", " Balbutiements " for vocal quartet and soprano, and " Ocre de Barbarie ", a musical performance for metronome, vending machines, barrel organ, piano, tuba, saxophone, violin and percussion. She has commissions from the Vidy Theatre (Lausanne), get Pro Helvetia and the Donaueschingen Music Days.

Prizes and awards

Courvoisier was awarded in 1996 with the Swiss Prix des jeunes créateurs; she was awarded the Prix de la Création of the Zonta Club in 2000.


  • Y2K - Sylvie Courvoisier Ocre ( Enja, 2000, with Michel Godard and Pierre Charial )
  • Entomological Reflections ( Tzadik 2004, with Mori, Ibarra )
  • Signs and Epigrams ( Tzadik 2007, solo)
  • Lonelyville ( Intakt 2007, with Mori, Feldman, Courtois, Gerald Cleaver )
  • To Fly to Steal ( Intakt, 2010) with Mark Feldman
  • Oblivia ( Tzadik, 2010) with Mark Feldman
  • Hôtel Du Nord ( Intakt Records, 2011) with Thomas Morgan