Gary Versace

Gary Versace, a keyboardist, was able to climb to the top of contemporary jazz in a short time. However, the struggle to reach this point was long and hard won. His mother, a vocalist/organist, was his first teacher. He was born in Greenwich, CN, April 25, 1968. His father urged him to learn the accordion but he preferred the piano and jazz. Versace studied privately with Kevin Hays and earned his Masters in music performance at Eastman School of Music. He also taught jazz studies at the University of Oregon-Portland for eight years. Versace also performed a double piano concert with Marian McPartland. He adopted the organ of his mother during the second period of his stay in Portland. In 2002, he moved to New York City. Versace, who worked with Grammy-award-winning Maria Schneider’s big band and the Nuttree Quartet featuring Jerry Bergonzi, has been a prominent, highly-respected organ player in jazz today. He has also worked with Andy LaVerne, Frank Kimbrough and Eliot Zigmund. He made his debut on Pony Canyon in 2004 with Winter Sonata. This was followed by Many Places (2006) and Time and Again (2006) for the Steeplechase labels. He is a prominent member Matt Wilson’s Arts.

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