Laurent Cugny

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Laurent Cugny (2011)

Laurent Cugny (born April 14, 1955 in La Garenne-Colombes ) is a French jazz musician (pianist, big band leader, composer, arranger), jazz critic and jazz scholar.

Live and act

Cugny began taking piano lessons when he was ten. In 1977 he graduated from the University of Paris with a degree in economics , followed by a DEA in film studies in 1978. From 1981 to 1991 he was Professor of Piano and Arrangement at the Center d'Informations Musicale in Paris. Since 2000 he has been teaching at the Sorbonne , where he received his doctorate in musicology (on methods of jazz analysis) in 2001. From 1994 he also worked as a jazz critic. B. in “ Jazz Magazine ”, “Jazzman”, “ Les Cahiers du Jazz ”, “La Revue d'Analyse Musicale”. In addition, he writes film reviews e.g. B. for “Cinematographe”, where he worked as a journalist in 1977/8.

As a jazz musician, he founded the big band Lumière in 1979 and recorded several albums with it and the Orchester National de Jazz (ONJ), which he directed from 1994 to 1997, from the 1980s onwards. In 1987 he played with Gil Evans and recorded with him and his big band Lumière . With his band Lumière he won first prize in 1980 at the “ Concours National de jazz de la Defense ”, as well as a prize for composition. In 1992 he recorded the Dromesko album for Emarcy with the big band Lumière .

In 1997 he founded the Maison du Jazz in Paris, a jazz cultural center where courses, seminars, concerts and exhibitions are held. Today he is the artistic director of this center.


In 1997 he was awarded the French Django d'Or for best orchestra (ONJ), in 2001 for founding the Maison du Jazz in Paris and in 1994 for his biography about Miles Davis, for which he was also awarded the Prix ​​Charles Delaunay . In 1989 he received the “ Prix ​​Django Reinhardt ” from the “Académie du Jazz” and in 1996 the Prix ​​Boris Vian from the Akadémie for his album “Reminiscing” (with his big band Lumière ). In 2011, Cugny's album La Tectonique des Nuages (Signature / Harmonia Mundi) was awarded the Grand Prix de l'Académie du Jazz as the best album of the year .

Books by Cugny

  • Electrique, Miles Davis 1968-1975 , 1994
  • Las Vegas Tango - Une Vie de Gil Evans , 1991 (he also has a website about Gil Evans: [1] )
  • Une histoire du jazz en France , 2014

Web links