At that time, jazz was not a popular music, neither encouraged by the official rule in the country. She studied it with passion, on her own, listening to tapes and vinyl records that were scarcely available. She listened to Charlie Parker and Miles Davis tapes, transcribed the scores by ear and studied their structure, their harmony, their technique and improvisations. She discovered the way Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughn were playing.
The American spirit, the hope, the joy of life, the swing, the pure light that was coming through jazz provided a window for Anca’s spirit to escape from the absurd restrictions of the socialist regime and of the everyday life. Little by little, in years after years of assiduous efforts, Anca developed her vocal technique and seriously studied the piano at the Iassy Conservatory. When she prepared for graduation, her diploma work was an absolute premiere in the music field in Romania since it was dedicated to jazz and to the ‘improvisation genius’ of Charlie Parker. Anca started to teach music, and jazz was a constant joy in her life.
She supported it, spread it, advocated it and educated many people about it. She was a beacon of American music and culture, a pioneer and a jazz ambassador in a far away place like Eastern Europe. People started to ask themselves where she landed there from. In the 80’s, she founded a jazz club at Suceava, in the northern part of Romania called Bucovina. A few years before and especially after the iron curtain fell, thanks to an ideological meltdown - when Eastern Europe started to breathe again - Anca started to appear at Romanian Jazz Festivals in Sibiu & Bucharest where she was a constant sensation.
Her success quickly grew larger, crossed over the Romanian borders and her appearances were cheered since then at many festivals in Europe in Nürnberg, Vienna, Praga, Liege, Berlin, Graz, Leipzig etc… The Romanian-born singer holds an overwhelming talent to be discovered by the American public and jazz lovers. A brief presentation of Anca Parghel - the musician. Anca is a unique blend of endowment, sheer perseverance and passionate dedication to jazz. She is at the most fruitful point in her career where all her experience, studies and achievements are integrated in a unique mature artist. For her exceptional vocal range of 4 octaves, Anca Parghel has been compared to Yma Sumac; for her opera singing with Maria Callas, and for her mastery and subtleness she was linked to Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughn, but her exotic blend of charm, originality and improvisation genius make her absolutely unique, defining a supertalent in a class of her own.
As her more recognizable mark, Anca impresses with the acrobatic excursions of her voice which take the listener into a mind-blowing, soul-expanding experience, into a never-touched territory of deep feeling and overwhelming emotions. Anca Parghel powers a voice which is superbly endowed with a sweet, lush texture, a delicate warmth and a mysterious subtleness that seems to also emit waves and messages in the inaudible, subliminal realms. Her passionate interpretation is a deep, personal, soul to soul transforming contact, which touches the transcendental nature of our hearts like an unveiling ritual of alchemy. For Anca, music is a pretext, a medium, an instrument to convey a deep, personal, peak-experience. Anca’s musical craft gently lifts the listener’s soul and takes it to an amazing mystical journey. Her performance is in the same time her interior journey.
Carried by the waves of her voice, every soul will feel transformed, energized and mystified. Either playing a brilliant interpretation of Duke Ellington, Billie Holiday or Charlie Parker songs or in a vibrant ethno-jazz colored with Romanian folk music (Anca was born in the Northern part of Romania, Bucovina), in a free swing or be-bop scat, Anca brings a spontaneous, playful and genial touch with her amazingly creative and melodic improvisation. Truly a vocal phenomenon, displaying a stunning control of her voice, Anca effortlessly flies through and unifies musical genres and styles. She equally excels and charms by playing swing, jazz, ethno-jazz, blues, gospel, bossa nova and be-bop. She is also an amazing interpret of classical vocal and piano works, and her multiple talents and versatility make her really hard to classify. Anca Parghel’s vocal technique is so perfectly controlled, so instrumental that jazz legend Billy Hart assumed that she must have been a… trumpet in a previous life. Anca released 18 jazz albums so far.
Apart from her active presence on the jazz scene, Anca formed a generation of jazz singers as an influential vocal jazz and bel canto professor at the Conservatory in Bucharest and Brussels. Her professional record includes a vocal jazz professorship at the Royal Conservatory in Brussels, and an intense participation in jazz workshops across Europe. Anca is one of the most beloved jazz singers at many venues in Europe. Anca played with Larry Coryell, Billy Hart, Philippe Catherine, Mark Levine, John Ruocco, Claudio Roditi, Gustavo Bergalli, Klaus Ignatzek, Jean-Louis Rassinfosse and many others.
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