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About Daniel Sky

Daniel “Sky” Szczepanski is a trumpet player based in New York City, born in 1993 in Warsaw, Poland. He initially started playing piano at the age of 6, followed by a trumpet at an early age of 12. He performed at festivals like “La Folle Journe” in France, “Jazz Rally” in Germany or “Crazy Days of Music” in Poland, and many other famous concert halls nationwide, such as the Polish Radio or National Philharmonic. During that time it was already very clear that Daniel is a promising young musician, especially because of the engagement and passion he had for music. He always had a little “something” that made him stand out from other musicians.

 

      While he used to study the field of classical music in Karol Szymanowski Complex of State Music Schools No 4 in Warsaw, at the same time in the same school Daniel was also playing Big-Band as a lead trumpeter and a soloist, as well as playing in various brass ensembles and in a symphonic orchestra which pushed him to play repertoires from J.S.Bach to Count Basie, Duke Ellington or Neal Hefti, which also helped him grow a lot. After graduating from High School in 2012 and deciding to expand his musical journey, he started Henryk Majewski Post Secondary School of Jazz in Warsaw, where he would spend the next 3 years researching jazz music. Except Big-Band influences, Roy Hargrove, Wynton Marsalis and Miles Davis were Daniel’s first non Western Classical music inspirations. In 2016 Daniel achieved his big dream of getting accepted into Berklee College of Music, where he received a life-changing opportunity to meet and learn from the world’s finest musicians. During that time he was discovering and shaping his tone on the trumpet by working with excellent faculties such as Sean Jones and Tiger Okoshi. He was also attending many Jason Palmer concerts at the Wally’s Jazz Club during his weekly residency there.

 

      Daniel was awarded with a very prestigious grant by the Ministry of Culture in Poland due to his past achievements, he also received a prize from Downbeat Magazine for an outstanding solo performance and was the winner of many competitions inside the country back in the early school years.

 

      In 2019 he received a Bachelor’s degree from Berklee College of Music and in the same year enrolled in a Master’s Program created by Berklee Global Jazz Institute directed by Danilo Perez and Marco Pignataro, where he afterwards started studying with Jazz masters such Joe Lovano, John Patitucci, Ben Street, Dave Liebman, Terri Lyne Carrington and many others.

 

      Over the last years Daniel has been performing with musicians such as Paquito D’Rivera, Kenny Werner, Kevin Harris, Jason Palmer, George Garzone, Zbigniew Namysłowski, Ruben Rodriguez, Phil Wilson and Gordon Goodwin. In 2018, he traveled as a “Global Jazz Ambassador” to the Dominican Republic to perform in the “DR Jazz Festival” where he created workshops consisting of musical classes for children, especially in undereducated poorer areas.

 

      In the spring of 2020 Daniel graduated from Berklee Global Jazz Institute with a Master’s degree in Music. Berklee helped him not only with improving his abilities in performance, but also in composing and in the field of social change, music education and awareness. In 2019 he became a music assistant to (R.I.P.) Ralph Peterson and arranged his tune “Forth and Back” which made it on the “Onward and Upward” album which is now considered for a Grammy Nomination.

 

      Daniel is currently working on his debut album, as well as debut albums of various musicians from his generation.

Besides his musicality and performance skills, he is a sincere, responsible and hard working wonderful young man who is full of life and enthusiasm in creating music to make this world a better place. He is such a fun person to be with for all of us.”

- Tiger Okoshi

“I have also had the distinct pleasure of knowing Daniel as a student for the past year and in my time as an educator I have only seen a few students as dedicated and unique as he. He is a shining example in the classroom and a true ambassador for the music program at Berklee. Receiving several scholarships and awards, Daniel is a leading voice in all of the ensembles that he performs in. I have personally seen Daniel grow as a musician while having the pleasure of being one of his mentors and Chair of the Brass Department at The Berklee College of Music. He is well respected by his peers and brings a high level of professionalism and integrity to every situation he is in. “

- Sean Jones

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