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"All of these achievements are impressive enough, but it is Bijan’s personal charm and outgoing personality that have earned him the many performance opportunities in such a wide spectrum of musical endeavors."
-- Robert Estrin, LivingPianos
"He is easily able to adapt to any musical setting."
-- Brett Ecklund,
KX 93.5 FM Jazz Quest Radio Host
About: Bijan Taghavi
Bijan Taghavi is a pianist, composer, and educator who is "able to adapt to any musical setting” (Brett Ecklund/KX 93.5 FM Jazz Quest Radio).
As a leader, the Bijan Taghavi Trio toured Japan in December 2018, including performances at Urayasu Concert Hall in Chiba, Live House ENN in Sendai, Live House ROXX in Aamori, and Nogata Kumin Hall in Tokyo. Bijan also leads a Duo Series at the National Arts Club in NYC, where he has performed concerts with Dick Oatts, Rich Perry, Jay Anderson, Ulysses Owens Jr., Roxy Coss, Giveton Gelin, and Kiyoshi Kitagawa.
As a collaborator, Bijan has worked with Rodney Whitaker, Randy Napoleon, Ron Carter, Stefon Harris, and performed Coltrane’s A Love Supreme with Joe Lovano at Jazz at Lincoln Center. Bijan has also performed at venues such as: Blue Note Amsterdam, Beacon Theatre, Apollo Theatre, 55 Bar, and Minton’s Playhouse Harlem.
A sought-after composer and arranger, Bijan has written works for studio orchestra, big band, string quartet, and small jazz ensembles, including performing his original music at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts a part of the Betty Carter Jazz Ahead Residency.
Alongside a busy performing career, Bijan is an Adjunct Professor of Jazz Piano at Hillsdale College. His experience has helped refine his comprehensive and unique method for teaching jazz piano, improvisation and harmony which he offers privately via video correspondence. He launched his unique Personalized Video Correspondence Lessons during the COVID-19 pandemic, where he has built an extensive lesson library of over 400 videos and PDFs and has an online studio of 40 students from Spain, Canada and all over the world. During the pandemic, Bijan was also a guest panelist for "Hearin' The Changes”, Luther Hughes' weekly masterclass at California State University, Fullerton alongside renowned jazz educators Bert Ligon, Bill Cunliffe, Chuck Israels, and others. Bijan has taught classes in Beginning Improvisation and Advanced Musicianship at Michigan State University and is also an educator for JazzPianoSchool.com where he has written over twenty articles and produced instructional videos for their Artist Highlight and Gig Analysis series’.
Bijan was inspired to play the piano at the age of three from a film entitled El Dorado, which featured Bijan's idol, Elton John. Growing up in Laguna Niguel, California, Bijan was classically trained under the mentorship of Robert Estrin, studying the monumental works of Rachmaninoff, Liszt, Chopin, Beethoven, and Bach.
Together, Bijan toured with Robert as part of LivingPiano: Journey Through Time: Historic Concert Experience where they explored the history of the keyboard in musical performance, dressed up in period costumes. Bijan played the role of “Young Mozart” by performing Mozart's works on the fortepiano. They performed at many venues across California, including: Schumacher Hall, Cal State Bakersfield, Hole Memorial Auditorium at La Sierra University, and Music Teachers Association California. Bijan also performed numerous classical solo piano recitals, accompanied Metropolitan Opera Singer Eric Jordan, and performed the Grieg Piano Concerto with the South Coast Symphony as a first-prize winner of the Young Stars of the Future Competition.
Bijan’s foray into jazz began his junior year of high school after a performance with Grammy Latin jazz Artist Nestor Torres at SOKA Performing Arts Center. Aided by his perfect pitch, Bijan assimilated the music instantly. Soon thereafter, Bijan discovered the music of Oscar Peterson and Kenny Barron. A recipient of the Presser Foundation Scholarship, Bijan then earned his Bachelors of Music in Jazz Piano Performance at the Manhattan School of Music and his Masters of Music at Michigan State University; he has studied with Phil Markowitz, Fred Hersch, Garry Dial and Xavier Davis.