Francesca Gaza (1995) is an Italian/German singer, composer and arranger with Romanian roots currently living in Basel, Switzerland.
As a bandleader, sidewoman and arranger she is working extensively in jazz-, antique-, pop-, contemporary-classical and experimental music and has released two albums under her name: Kugelförmigkeit (2021, Whales Records) and Lilac for People (2019, Auand Records).
Recent commissions as a composer include a piece for mixed choir for the Junger Kammechor Basel performed in May 2021; a piece for the microtonal Arciorgano of Studio 31 for a premiere in Gare du Nord with Cello, Doublebass, Soprano and Trombone for the Congress of Music Theory and Tuning in October ’21 and a performance for string quartet, piano and three voices commissioned by the Women’s Streik of the Musik Akademie Basel.
In September ’21 she was awarded the first prize of the composition competition ‘Fraumünsterhof’ with her piece ‘Isoritmo/ Alice’s Fall’ for the jubilee of the 50 years women’s voting rights, and performed with her ensemble in the Art Installation on the Münsterhof in Zurich.
Her most recent project Kugelförmigkeit is an eleven-people ensemble, showcasing a brotherly connection through the fusion of apparently distant principles of configuration, by reaching beyond genre-definition and incorporating instruments from antiquity (Renaissance, Baroque) and modernism (jazz, popular music, contemporary classical). Her album with this project was presented on June 25th 2021 on Whales Records.With her other main project as a band leader, the octet Lilac for People, she will release the 2nd album at the beginning of 2022.
She has toured Italy, Germany, France and Switzerland with Lilac for People and has played in the UK, Romania, and Germany with Cocoon, a quartet composed of three avant-guard electronic jazz musicians from Italy.
Her collaborations as an arranger and singer see her involved with Brooklyn-based Drummer and Composer Chase Kuesel’s album Space Between (Ears and Eyes Records, 2020) and with Italian pianist Francesco Orio’s new Trio Album Os, as well as his project Vox Organalis. Other collaborations see her involved with the Basel-based quintet Katom, being her most recent involvement as a composer and singer which will see the project performing in various European festivals for the presentation of their upcoming album. She has been featured as well as a singer in acclaimed Catalan trumpeter and composer Oscar La Torre’s new album A Pathway to Become, and as a composer in pop-jazz singer-songwriter Vieri’s newest production and the electronic-pop band /handlogic with their album NobodyPanic.
She was awarded the National Italian Composition Prize in 2017, the 1st prize of the Jazzalguer Festival led by Paolo Fresu in 2018, the Umbria Jazz Competition Prize and a Berklee College of Music Summer Program Scholarship in 2013.
She is a part of both Basel’s and Florence’s vibrant art scene, and regularly performs and collaborates with musicians and artists from across Europe.
Francesca has graduated with honours from the M.A. in Composition, Performance and Production at the Jazzcampus Basel with a Minor in the Antique Music department of Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, mentored by Guillermo Klein, Lisette Spinnler, Jorge Rossy, Luciana Souza, Norma Winstone, and Patrik Zosso, as well as Johannes Menke, Florian Vogt and Ulrike Hofbauer amongst others. She finished her Bachelor of Arts in Jazz Vocals in 2017 at the Siena Jazz University in Italy with magna cum laude under the guidance of acclaimed singer Diana Torto, pianist Stefano Battaglia and bassist Daniele Camarda. Currently, she is involved in her post-graduate studies in composition, sound design, early music and specializing in baroque voice.