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Marilyn Crispell (born March 30, 1947 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) is an American jazz pianist and composer.
Crispell studied classical piano and composition at the New England Conservatory of Music. She has been a resident of Woodstock, NY since 1977 when she came to study and teach at Karl Berger's Creative Music Studio. She discovered jazz through the music of John Coltrane, Cecil Taylor and other contemporary jazz players and composers as Paul Bley and Leo Smith.
For ten years she was a member of Anthony Braxton's Quartet and the Reggie Workman Ensemble. She has been a member of the Barry Guy New Orchestra as well as a member of the Henry Grimes Trio, the Europea Quartet Noir (with Urs Leimgruber, Fritz Hauser and Joëlle Léandre), and Anders Jormin's Bortom Quintet.
In 2005 she performed and recorded with the NOW Orchestra in Vancouver, Canada and in 2006 she was co-director of the Vancouver Creative Music Institute and a faculty member at the Banff Centre International Workshop in Jazz.
Crispell has performed and recorded as a soloist and leader of her own groups. She has also performed and recorded music by contemporary composers John Cage, Pauline Oliveros, Robert Cogan, Pozzi Escot, Manfred Niehaus and Anthony Davis (including his opera X with the New York City Opera).
In addition to playing, she has taught improvisation workshops and given lecture/demonstrations at universities and art centers in the U.S., Europe, Canada and New Zealand, and has collaborated with videographers, filmmakers, dancers and poets. She received a 2005 Guggenheim Fellowship.
With Anthony Braxton
With Anders Jormin