I work on new things daily - interview with Angelica Sanchez

Piotr Wojdat
Autor zdjęcia: 
mat. promocyjne


How is it to work with Marilyn Crispell? You are both piano players, but you are also from different generations.

Angelica Sanchez: Working with Marilyn is wonderful. She is a very generous person in all aspects of her life and we have a strong musical connection and a beautiful friendship. I have been listening to Marilyn since I was teenager and playing with her felt like home. Our difference in age has never been an issue.

You've just released an album with Marilyn. When it was recorded and how did it happen?

AS: We recorded in Woodstock, NY in September 2019. I asked Marilyn if she would like to record some of my music. We discussed it for about a year before we completed it. In the time before we recorded we shared different aspects of our lives. We also had a nice performance.


On the right channel we hear Marilyn Crispell playing the piano, and on the left channel we hear your music. Why did you decide to do it?

AS: It’s a common way to record two pianos. We had a wonderful engineer Chris Andersen who helped us get the right sound. We wanted a natural sound and used mic placement to achieve.

The album "How To Turn The Moon" was released by Pyroclastic Records. It's Kris Davis label, who is also a piano player. Are you planning to work with her?

AS: Kris and I have worked together in the past. We play together on her recording called, “Duopoly. We recorded a composition of mine. We don't have anything planned for the future.

Some years ago you made another duo record which gained critical acclaim. I'm talking about "Twine Forest".  What kind of person is Wadada Leo Smith? What have you learned from him?

AS: I feel fortunate to have spent some time with Mr. Smith. His knowledge is deep and I learned a lot from him. He has a unique way of composing/improvising that I still study today.

Life is not separate from music, it’s all connected the same way we are connected to each other. Improvisation is not one person reacting to another. It’s more of a collective where each person is in their own universe and working together to achieve a different sound. This I learned from him.


If we talk about learning, I must ask you about your education experience. What are your main goals in teaching?

AS: I love teaching and find it very rewarding. I learn just as much if not more than the students. There is not one way to teach and I encourage students to study things they love. I always want to make students as excited about music as I am. I work with students to help them find their own music.

What is for you more adventurous: teaching or playing your own music?

AS: I consider myself a student. I work on new things daily and I share this process with my students. Life is an adventure and you don’t know where it will take you. I live each day with gratitude and awe. Music and teaching are not separate from each other. Sharing is important and promotes growth for all parties.



With whom would you like to work in the future?

AS: I am open to anyone who loves music and understands its importance. I’m hoping to play with Billy Hart in the future.

This year you've also released an album with Mark Sanders and Paul Dunmall. Could you tell me what kind of record it is?

AS: Playing with Paul and Mark was great. We played a few concerts and then made that wonderful recording. It was my first time playing with both of them but I felt as if I had known them for years.

The whole record is improvised. I am hoping to play again with Paul and Mark in the future. Such wonderful musicians.

What are your plans for the near future?

AS: I have been fortunate to have a few concerts. I would like to do more.

I will also be recording my Nonet project. I am also working on music for Bigband, a new solo concert and a new trio recording. Covid is making things more difficult but I am writing music with the intention to perform and record.