CD Baby Bio - Matt began playing the piano at age four. Within a couple of years it was apparent that he had a gift for picking out melodies he'd heard in the ballet studio (Matt's mother is Lynn Marchant, a Grandmaster of Russian Classical Ballet with an established academy and ballet company in McMinnville, Oreon) or on the radio. He also showed a skill and interest in making up his own music, patiently exploring harmonies for hours on end. His piano teacher quickly recognized this early aptitude and began to tailor her method of instruction to strengthen this aspect of Matt's training. Having been raised around classical ballet from birth, Matt was around recorded music every day. From Tchaikovski to Mozart to Bach, to The Beatles, Donovan, Cat Stevens, Frank Miller, and the late, great Lynn Stanford, a prodigious improvisational ballet classroom pianist whose entire catalog could be found in Matt's Mother's studio. Lynn Stanford's skillful classical improv and strict adherence to form impacted Matt's musical development considerably. By age nine, after five years of study, his ability to improvise in a variety of styles was gaining momentum. The formal instruction of classical theory and practice continued with subsequent piano teachers and his love of the craft of playing the piano was firmly rooted. That year Matt began accompanying beginning ballet classes in his Mother's studio. Over the next several years, Matt was given the privilege of accompanying gradually more advanced classes until he was invited to accompany Master classes hosted by his Mother, Lynn. He has played for Masters from the Bolshoi, the Kierov, the New York City Ballet, the Royal Winnipeg from Canada, Dance Theater of Harlem, and many others from across the globe. In his late teens, Matt was considered by many to be in the top one percent of ballet classroom accompanists in the world. This was a hefty responsibility, but a true honor for a young man. When Matt was twenty-two years old the Bolshoi Ballet in Russia offered him a Doctorate scholarship to the Moscow Conservatory and a job for life in the Bolshoi School of Ballet. He was the only American to ever be granted this great opportunity, but as life is full of choices, he respectfully declined the generous offer to be with his then wife and new born daughter, Alicia, as there was only a ticket for one. Through the next decade and into his mid thirties, Matt continued to accompany ballet classes and plans to begin recording classroom albums in the near future. Naturally, over the years, Matt expanded his musical tastes and began listening to all sorts of music and, throughout junior high and high school, was involved in jazz choir, concert choir, and theater. His current favorite bands and artists are Rush, The Beatles, of course, Fountains of Wayne, Elton John, Billy Joel, and Sting. During his early twenties he started writing songs, emulating his newfound creative influences, and continues to write and arrange. Some additional musical endeavors include performing, teaching privately, numerable private and commercial recording sessions, composing, and producing. Matt is also working with Portland singer/songwriter Brian Copeland on a new record to be released in October of 2009. Currently Matt resides in West Linn, Oregon with wife Lee Ann, four cats, and his dog Arthur.
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