Maciek Schejbal

Europe

I grew up in Cracow, Poland where I graduated from Academy of Music in the classical percussion class. I was active on jazz, fusion, classical, and avant-garde scenes and I taught music at local music schools. I had the great fortune to share the stage with legends of Polish song, Ewa Demarczyk and Marek Grechuta, from whom I learned the art of performance.

After traveling with Cracow Radio Symphony Orchestra to England (world premiere of Penderecki's Polish Requiem), I decided to stay behind and after several months in London, I emigrated to South Africa where some of my relatives lived at that time.


Africa

That special decade in South Africa allowed me to continue developing various musical interests; I performed with Johannesburg and Cape Town symphony orchestras; jazz and African music artists including Winston Mankunku, Robbie Jansen, and Basil 'Mannenberg' Coetzee; as well as theater and dance groups. I was also teaching drums at a few centers around the country, including Mega Music in Johannesburg, 1820 Foundation in Grahamstown, and at Cape Town's Musical Action for People's Progress, The Jazz Workshop and the University of Cape Town.

While living in Johannesburg, I was involved with the progressive theater circles of the Market Theater, performing drums and percussion in a pit as well as composing and performing my music at several theater productions supported by popular and critical acclaim (see PRESS sidebar). Collaboration with Andrew Buckland brought No Easy Walk, a mime and music piece and Thing?, a play for three actors and three musicians. I wrote and workshopped music for Barney Simon's Flight, and Gary Gordon's Anatomical Journey of a Settler Man, among other productions.


America

After arriving in New York (it's been over 20 years...), I have been working mostly with African performers, including nearly 15-year collaboration with a Cameroonian singer Kaïssa. I produced her first album Looking There and directed Kaïssa's various ensembles in venues around the world. Also worked quite a bit with a South African great Tony Cedras, you can hear some of the tunes I recorded with Tony here, on the MUSIC page. Continuing my educational interests, I have been a part of the Drummers Collective music school in Manhattan since 1998, teaching drums and music production.

Drumming-wise I'm freelancing with different African and Slavic groups, trying to keep my Afro-Polka concept alive which I've been developing for a couple of years. My Afro-Polka Ensemble appears occasionally around the City and the Afro-Polka record is in the works, stay in touch: CONTACT...