On October 16-20 the Lithuanian capital Vilnius will host the 32nd International Contemporary Jazz and Improvised Music Festival Vilnius Jazz. It is one of the oldest jazz festivals in Lithuania and the only one introducing the audiences to the world’s most interesting examples of contemporary jazz and the formers of its aesthetic.
Established in 1987, at the wake of anti-Soviet movement in the country, the festival responded to the thirst for rebellious and free music, and, together with the country, experienced the euphoric rush of freedom, as well as withstood any difficulties that came with it.
In over 30 years of its existence, Vilnius Jazz has introduced many coryphées of the world’s improvised music, contemporary jazz and Japanese jazz elite to Lithuanian jazz aficionados. Moreover, it came to be a nurturer of the traditions of Vilnius jazz school, stemming from Ganelin-Tarasov-Chekasin Trio, through a dedicated focus on its new exponents.
This year the festival will present performances of the avant-garde jazz pioneers: “The Art Ensemble of Chicago” and “Sun Ra Arkestra” from the USA. New York-based musicians Sofia Rei, an Argentinean vocalist, and JC Maillard, a multi-instrumentalist and composer of French heritage, will interpret compositions from The Book Beriah, the third book of John Zorn’s Masada cycle.
One of the foremost jazz saxophonists of all times American David Murray will introduce a project with a striking Norwegian rhythm tandem – double bassist Ingebrigt Håker Flaten and drummer Paal Nilssen-Love from “The Thing” Trio.
Saxophonist Rodrigo Amado and his “Motion Trio”, the flagmen of Portuguese jazz, will team up with the legendary free jazz pianist Alexander von Schlippenbach. And on top of that, the audience will meet the inventive French trio Hermia-Ceccaldi-Darrifourcq, and also joined projects of Lithuanian, Dutch, Norwegian and Latvian improvised music luminaries.
Along with this year’s nine international and two Lithuanian projects, for the fourteenth year in a row, the festival organises Vilnius Jazz Young Power competition for young jazz talents. The competition jury rates the participants’ original compositions, and the finals of the competition fall into Vilnius Jazz’ main program.
Last modified: October 15, 2019