Nikos Syropoulos

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About Nikos Syropoulos

"Nikos Syropoulos is one of those rare musicians who, from the first note, broadcasts that they 'got it' ... 'it' being that mysterious ingredient and quality that is recognizably unique to ARTISTS, and 'got' being the performer gene that allows the artist to get his or her message across to all who will listen. I encourage one and all to listen well to Nikos. His music is a tonic to the toxins of today. He actually gives me hope for tomorrow's music."—Peter Erskine, legendary jazz drummer

Playing a unique blend of jazz improvisation and classical chamber music, pianist and composer Nikos Syropoulos and his ensemble, Rozalia, are surprising audiences in Los Angeles. Dedicated to and named after his late yiayia (Greek grandmother), Rozalia is a new ensemble of piano, string quartet, and vocalist that showcases Nikos’ original compositions and arrangements. Yiayia Rozalia was truly one of a kind, an amazingly kind-hearted woman with a sharp wit and touching sense of humor. When visiting her in Greece as a child, Nikos would play laika (Greek folk songs) for her on his mini keyboard, and she would beam proudly. Nikos named his ensemble after her to honor her memory and to keep her spirit present in his daily life. His debut album will be released on January 20, 2012 thanks largely to a successful grassroots Kickstarter fundraiser, which helped raise almost $6,000 from over 100 supporters.

Nikos has gained national acclaim for his music as a two-time recipient of the ASCAP Foundation Young Jazz Composer Award. As a performer, he is highly sought after for his beautiful touch at the piano, deep creativity and sensitivity, and stylistic versatility. At 23 years old, Nikos has performed in venues across the country with artists such as Grammy award-winning songwriter, Josh Kear, jazz singer James Torme (son of legendary singer, Mel Torme), has opened for The Doobie Brothers, and performed with the LA soul-jazz collective, Build an Ark. Nikos is also adept at working creatively in collaboration with artists from various mediums, including dance, film, and theater.

An alumnus of USC’s Thornton School of Music, Nikos attended college on a full-tuition scholarship, received the jazz department’s Outstanding Undergraduate Award, and graduated magna cum laude. Currently he studies the Taubman Approach to piano technique under Master Teacher Robert Durso. As a private teacher he teaches piano, improvisation, and composition. With the release of Rozalia, Nikos commemorates his late grandmother and hopes to share his music with a wider audience.

Nikos Syropoulos joined the JazzTimes community on Jan 11, 2012