Moscow Jazz Orchestra rendered by Downbeat as “an outfit of virtuosos” is one of the world's hottest jazz orchestras and features 17 splendid jazz musicians. Essentially it is Igor Butman Orchestra, founded in 1999 by the world famous saxophone player Igor Butman. Since then his Big Band has frequently toured Russia, Europe, and the USA, appearing at many of the world's most prestigious jazz venues, including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, "Birdland" and others. In 2012 Igor Butman Orchestra became The Moscow state jazz orchestra conducted by Igor Butman. Downbeat magazine in its recent review of the Umbria Jazz Festival compared the Orchestra to the three finest jazz orchestras of all time: “The Igor Butman Big Band... offered a 90-minute set that displayed their mastery of post-Dizzy Gillespie jazz orchestra language, rendering both bright numbers and ballads with the precision, flair and swing of the Atomic-era Basie Band on steroids and a “We will crush you” attitude reminiscent of the better editions of the Buddy Rich Orchestra...”.
Internationally acclaimed artists were excited by performing with the Moscow Jazz Orchestra, among them are Dee Dee Bridgewater, “New York Voices”, Kevin Mahogany, John Pizzarelli, Natalie Cole, George Benson, Wynton Marsalis, Larry Corryell, Billy Cobham, Bill Evans, Joe Lovano, Gary Burton, and Toots Thielemans. Butman Music Records released four CDs by the Igor Butman Orchestra: a debut album “Eternal Triangle” featuring Randy Brecker, “Moscow@3am” with original music by the outstanding composer and pianist Nick Levinovsky featuring Wynton Marsalis as a special guest, a crossover live CD “Sherherazade’s tales,” a thrilling new jazz arrangements of Russian romances and symphonic suite “Sheherazade” by N.A.Rimsky-Korsakov, which features Sean Jones and Peter Bernstein, and “Special Opinion”, a sensational album by Nick Levinovsky and Igor Butman Orchestra! It was recorded at Avatar Studios in New York in January 2013 with fusion and jazz rock super stars: drummer Dave Weckl, guitarists Mike Stern and Mitch Stein, saxophone player Bill Evans, trumpeter Randy Brecker and bassist Tom Kennedy.
Igor Butman, the leader of the Big Band, enjoys pushing the boundaries of jazz mainstream and create crossover projects. The Big Band often performs with American pianist and composer Igor Raykhelson, "Grammy" winning altoist Yuri Bashmet and his chamber ensemble "Moscow soloists". A big US tour with these remarkable musicians took place in the most celebrated venues of the country (including Seattle Symphony Hall, Wilshire Theatre, Severance Hall, Strathmore Hall, Boston Symphony Orchestra Hall etc.) in February and March 2009 and gathered non less than 20000 listeners!
During last few years Igor Butman presented Moscow Jazz Orchestra in Europe at Jazz A Juan in France, Zadymka Jazzowa in Poland, Wigan Jazz Festival in Great Britain, Umbria Jazz Festival in Italy, World Jazz Festival in Latvia, Klaipeda Jazz Festival in Lithuania, plus did two big tours in Germany adding to numerous European gigs with the Quartet/Orchestra and Grammy winning viola player Yuri Bashmet and his Moscow Soloists Chamber Orchestra. Adding to it Igor and Moscow Jazz Orchestra performed at Newport Jazz Festival, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Rochester Jazz Festival, Syracuse Jazz Festival in the USA, Montreal Jazz festival and Ottawa Jazz Festival in Canada, Jarasum Jazz Festival in Korea, Bluenote Club in Beijing, China.