Robert Sudall is an organist and jazz pianist, with a musical outlook of unique scope and ambition. After pursuing a classical music education at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, Robert began to form his own jazz trio in 2008, with the intent of playing standards in a nostalgic, 1950s style. The fortune to play a regular, fortnightly gig at a local club soon raised its head, and before much longer Robert was delving deeper and deeper into a whole range of jazz music – becoming increasingly preoccupied with contemporary stylings and world music. As a result, the material at the core of his trio’s current repertoire are original compositions (influenced by Turkish music and the ‘ECM sound’), jazz standards with contemporary twists, and music from the middle east.
In 2011, Robert self-released his debut EP ‘Candescence’. The recording contains 5 original compositions and features a line-up of piano, bass (Grant Russell) and drums (David Sudall). For two of the tracks, there was also the unique addition of an Oud, played by Manchester musician, Glenn Sharp.
Robert is in extensive demand as an accompanist, and has performed organ and piano for many choral societies across the Yorkshire district.
He is the accompanist for Ilkley Choral Society, and together with Musical Director Alan Horsey, has helped the choir prepare for performances of the Bach ‘St. Matthew Passion’, Durufle’s ‘Requiem’, Haydn’s ‘Creation’, Handel’s ‘Judas Maccabeus’, Poulenc’s ‘Gloria’ and Puccini’s ‘Messa di Gloria’, in addition to many others.
In the autumn of 2012, Robert’s second EP ‘Silently Evolving’ was released. A departure away from his piano-led trio, this recording was made using the theatre organ at the Victoria Hall in Saltaire. The production is believed to be one of the first (if not, the first) which features a theatre organ playing entirely original material. Additionally, the recording features an ensemble of bass (Sam Jackson), drums (David Sudall) and electric guitar (Tom Gee). The aim of the EP was to create an atmosphere of space, lyricism, beauty and ambience, and an extensive interview about the project was broadcast on BBC Radio 2’s ‘The Organist Entertains’.
As a creator and performer, Robert is always looking for new collaborations and new territory to explore. He loves the freedom and ‘daring’ that jazz performance offers, as well as the opportunity to search for a different direction within a piece.
In 2015 Robert established his new band 'Motion Complex'. The ensemble uses the same line-up as previously - piano, bass and drums - but takes journeys into very different musical territory. From austere north European jazz sounds, to elements of prog rock, contemporary classical and minimalism, the band is a dynamic, creative force for exploring melody, groove and texture.
Most recently, in the summer of 2017, Robert was enrolled on to the staff at Northern Ballet to work as a rehearsal pianist for the company.