"Kathrine Windfeld has quickly established herself on the Danish jazz scene with her outstanding skills as composer and arranger, primarily in the modern big band genre. Her talent is combined with a fantastic musical enthusiasm and a strong drive."
Danish Arts Foundation
Awards and Scholarships:
2023 - Odense Live Award - Main prize
2022 - Ben Webster Prize
2020 - Rising Stars Jazz Award, European Edition
2020 - Arne Hammelboes Scholarship
2019 - Danish Arts Foundation: The large 1-year grant
2018 - Carl Prisen: Talent of the Year".
Nomination: "Jazz composer of the Year"
2018 - Jazz Special Magazine:
"Danish Jazz Album Of The Year"
2018 - Danish Arts Foundation: The large 1-year grant
2018 - Odense Live Prisen - nomination
2017 - Danish Arts Foundation: The large 1-year grant
2016 - Danish Grammy Award:
"New Jazz Artist Of The Year"
Nominations: "Jazz album of the year"
"Jazz composer of the year"
2015 - "The large Piano Scholarship",
Malmö Academy of Music (Sweden)
2013 - "Stand By" Scholarship,
Harry Arnold Sällskapet (SE)
The Guardian (UK) describes Kathrine Windfeld‘s compositions as a rare combination of delicacy and strength: A colorful meeting of sophisticated harmonic passages, driving grooves and poetic ballads that float into her explosive arrangements.
With her highly acclaimed four big band releases AIRCRAFT (2015), LATENCY (2017), ORCA (2020) and DETERMINATION (2021) Kathrine Windfeld’s name has quickly exceeded the borders of her Scandinavian home, leading to countless awards and raving reviews in international publications like Downbeat (USA), Le Monde (F) and Jazzthing (DE).
Kathrine Windfeld has collaborated with top class orchestras like Frankfurt Radio Big Band (DE), Swedish Bohuslän Big Band and Danish Radio Big Band (DK).
Her ambitious work has also inspired international greats such as Mike Stern, Seamus Blake and Gilad Hekselman to share stage with her.
In 2020, as the only European jazz musician, she won the prestigious "Rising Stars Jazz Award" in London with a tour on 7 top festivals in Europe.
Pianist, composer, and arranger Kathrine Windfeld was born in Svendborg on Funen in 1984.
As teenager, her strong creative sense was channeled through painting, theatre, singing, and piano playing. During a 5-month stay at the music college “Den Rytmiske Højskole” in 2003, she decided to focus on the piano and composed her first pieces
Striving for a further exploration of the world of music, she went to The Department of Musicology in Copenhagen where she took classes in music theory and analysis, arranging for big band, and a master’s degree in choir/ensemble leading. Meanwhile, she played in an experimental and progressive quintet, “Gespenst”, which strongly developed her sense of writing and navigating in complex rhythmical landscapes. This group became her main path to the jazz and improvisation, for which reason she dedicated two years at the Swedish jazz school “Fridhems Folkhögskola” to jazz piano playing.
In 2011, she initiated “Kathrine Windfeld Sextet”, which is still performing frequently in Denmark and Sweden.
After Fridhems Folkhögskola, she took a bachelors degree at the jazz performance programme on “Malmoe Academy of Music”, where her quartet and the first edition of “Kathrine Windfeld Big Band (KWBB)” was formed in late 2012.
Her versatile musicianship and personal contribution to the acoustic jazz genre was officially awarded in 2013 by the Swedish “Harry Arnold Sällskap”, when she received the honorable scholarship “Stand By”.
In early 2014, her burning enthusiasm for the big band project made her initiate a new 15-piece dream-team (DK,SE,NO) in Copenhagen.
In June 2014, KWBB recorded their debut album, AIRCRAFT, featuring two renowned musicians: Morten Lund (DK) and Anders Bergcrantz (SE).
AIRCRAFT won a prestigeous Danish Music Award: ”New Jazz Artist of The Year” and was - as a rarity for a debut - nominated in further two categories: ”Album Of The Year” and ”Composer Of The Year”.
In 2016 KWBB was exclusively selected for a showcase at Jazzahead in Bremen, where they played for an international gathering of bookers and
music business people.
The show gained lots of attention, not least from the renowned Scandinavian jazz record label, Stunt Records.
KWBB's second album LATENCY was released on Stunt Records in March 2017.
While AIRCRAFT mainly impressed the Scandinavian listeners, LATENCY got massive international acclaim in leading music magazines. Especially in the UK and Germany, the album was well received:
In October, her sextet played a tour in the UK - and KWBB played showcases in Cologne and Hamburg in November.
In January 2020 Kathrine won the prestigious "LetterOne Rising Stars jazz Award, European Edition" in London, including a tour on 7 European top festivals in France, Spain, UK etc. Due to Covid-19 the tour was postponed.
In July 2020 Kathrine had her national TV debut in the programme "Jazzfestival på DR2" leading to new TV jobs as "Tak For Musikken" with half a million viewers.
From October 2020 she appears in 8 music programmes in the series "Her Er DIt Hit" on national TV.
In September 2020, Kathrine went on tour with the Swedish Bohuslän Big Band and recordede an album with 8 new compositions, specifically written for the project. The album will be out in Autumn 2021.
In early 2021, Kathrine received the Arne Hammelboe Travel Award of 13.400 EUR for further education outside Denmark.
DETERMINATION was released in October 2021, the result of Kathrines residency with Bohuslän Big Band in Gothenburg. The album is the 4th with music written my Kathrine and was followed by a Sweden tour.
In 2022 Kathrine WIndfeld Big Band will be playing at Jazzahead, European Jazz Meeting April 29.
... to be continued...
Shortly after, in September 2014, the
exclusive jazz club "The Standard" in Copenhagen
offered the young sensational orchestra a weekly gig.
During two seasons, KWBB played at the club, including
some shows with world-class stars like Mike Stern (US). Windfeld arranged the music of the guest artists exclusively for the shows.
The debut album AIRCRAFT was released in October 2015 and gained overwhelmingly positive response in Scandinavia. All the national papers wrote about a new rising star with an extraordinary talent for big band writing. (see PRESS)
“Kathrine Windfeld is a rising star on the European jazz scene, not least for her bold writing for her adventurous big band”. Jazzwise Magazine (UK)
In September 2018 KWBB went on UK tour with two sold out concerts at PizzaExpress Jazz Club in London and further shows at Turner Sims Concert Hall (Southampton) and Watermill Jazz (Dorking).
In December 2018 Kathrine Windfeld played two concerts with one of Europe's leading big bands, Frankfurt Radio Big Band. Both shows were sold out and have been recorded for radio broadcast.
In 2019, KWBB has played in the Gothenburg Concert Hall in Sweden - and Kathrine Windfeld had a project with the Finnish Espoo Big Band in April.
The third album with Kathrine Windfed Big Band, ORCA was released on Stunt Records October 16 2020 and has been very well received:
"Simply the best contemporary big band I've heard this year"
Bebop Spoken Here (UK)
"A level of excellence already more than notable for such a young formation"
Culture Jazz (F)
Jazzwise, Europe's leading jazz magazine, offered Windfeld a big feature, and Radio ABC Australia promoted ORCA as album of the week
In 2021 Kathrine Windfeld Sextet finally played a Europe tour in Spain, England, Ukraine, Iceland and Germany via the Rising Stars Jazz Award (UK)
TEACHERS - combos at Summer Session
Jeff Tain Watts
Windfeld has worked with several professionel and semi-professional ensembles, in- and outside Denmark, as conductor, composer, and arranger:
KW teaches jazz ensemble, composition, and arranging at two of Sweden’s finest jazz schools ”Fridhems Folkhögskola” and "Skurups Folkhögksola"
Jyry duty: National competitions like ”Ung Jazz”, ”Carl Prisen” "BHYO Jazz" (SE).
As bandleader and composer:
Has shared stage with:
Mike Stern (USA), Gilad Hekselman (ISR), Seamus Blake (US) Nancy Harms (USA), George Garzone (USA) Gerard Presencer (UK) Håkan Broström (SE), Anders Bergcrantz (SE)
Danish Radio Big Band, West Coast Big Band (SE), Jazzhus Montmartres Big Band, Basic Big Band, Niels Wilhelm Knudsen w. bigband, Joma Massage, Sydhavn Festival, JazzDanmark 2017 with co-writer Peter Jensen.