Nick Dunston - Skultura

Virtuosity, trust and vulnerability
© Cristina Marx/Photomusix
UT Connewitz


VVK: 17/12 € plus fee
AK: 22/17 €

Founded and led by Nick Dunston, the band performs the compositions of the Brooklyn-born double bassist, who now lives in Berlin.

"I am a Berliner" ... The person who memorably anchored this sentence in the collective memory was by no means a Berliner, but the American President John F. Kennedy. 60 years later, Berlin is an idea that goes far beyond the city limits. The Berlin jazz scene includes musicians who come from all over the world, stay in Berlin for a while, and eventually carry the spirit of the city out into the world again. The great flow heater on the Spree therefore also brings amazing projects to light time and again.

An example par excellence of the explosive power of the fast-moving capital city biotope is the quartet Skultura by composer and bassist Nick Dunston. He himself comes from New York, keyboardist Liz Kosack also came to Berlin from the U.S., singer Cansu Tanrikulu has Turkish roots, and saxophonist Eldar Tsalikov grew up in Rostov-on-Don. A band could hardly be more heterogeneous, and yet origin plays a rather subordinate role in this quartet. Rather, it is about the common access to the lived moment on the constant hot stove of Berlin.

In the word Skultura there is culture, sculpture and on closer inspection also Sutra. In a common online encyclopedia we can read that sutra means a short, memorable doctrinal sentence or a collection of such doctrinal sentences. Dunston's compositions for Skultura can be imagined in a similar way. Starting with samples that go far beyond the instrumentation of the four band members, compositional templates are generated that in turn trigger improvisations. The result, according to Dunston, amounts to "reembodied objects," objects that are given a new form. Physical and metaphysical intertwine, as do perception and imagination. The ear thus becomes a tracker that can assemble its found objects into new imaginary sculptures. The space in which all this happens becomes an active shaper of the event. In this performance, the audience is torn out of its passivity and becomes inventive itself. In the best case, this results in a new culture of creative exchange.

In addition to Dunston, Kosack, Tanrikulu and Tsalikov are each leaders of their own formations of very different colors. All four bring the full spectrum of their personal artistic experiences to Skultura. "Skultura is a potent embodiment of craft, virtuosity, confidence and vulnerability," Dunston piles on deep, because what else the grab bag Skultura can pour out will only be revealed at the Leipzig gig.

  • Text: Wolf Kampmann


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