jazzahead! 2024 Unveils Diverse Showcase Program.

Written by | Festivals, News

The upcoming jazzahead! 2024, scheduled from April 11 to 13, is poised to be a dynamic and culturally rich experience. With the Netherlands as the partner country, the festival embraces key themes of diversity, representation, and a broad spectrum of jazz expressions. With the showcase acts now revealed, the event promises a dynamic fusion of innovation, exceptional musicianship, and a celebration of diverse jazz traditions.

From a staggering pool of around 800 applications, five international juries, boasting a wealth of expertise, have made their selections. Today, we proudly announce the 40 acts that will grace the showcase concerts, representing the pinnacle of jazz and related music on a global scale.

The heart of the showcase program lies in the diversity of acts, particularly those hailing from the Netherlands. This year’s partner country promises to deliver a superb array of artists, emphasizing a rich and varied Dutch jazz scene. Among the eight Dutch acts performing, the Kika Sprangers Large Ensemble, BOI AKIH, Reinier Baas & Ben van Gelder, and the Marmoucha Orchestra showcase the depth and quality of the Dutch jazz landscape.

Götz Bühler, the new jazzahead! artistic advisor, has already left his mark on jazzahead! 2024, working alongside Sybille Kornitschky, the festival’s director. “Our program reflects the living traditions and current inspirations of this fascinating and completely international music,” remarks Bühler, who, with a keen eye for emerging talent and industry trends, ensures a vibrant and forward-looking lineup.

BOI AKIH | Photo by Merlijn Doomernik

The festival aims to provide a platform for a diverse range of artists, transcending geographical boundaries. Acts from Senegal, Kenya, and Nigeria mark the beginning of the festival’s new three-year theme, “Jazz from Africa,” reflecting the international scope of jazzahead! 2024.

The spotlight on women in jazz takes center stage, with an impressive representation of female bandleaders among the 40 acts. Noteworthy examples include the all-female quartet O.N.E. from Poland, the Open Arms Project led by Israeli-born clarinet star Oran Etkin, and the high-caliber German bands led by women, emphasizing the festival’s commitment to diversity.

In addition to the diverse lineup, the festival directors, Sybille Kornitschky and Götz Bühler, express their satisfaction with the increasing participation of UK bands since Brexit. The inclusion of young talents like pianist Sultan Stevenson from the Tomorrow’s Warriors talent development program underscores the festival’s commitment to nurturing emerging artists.

Sultan Stevenson

The sociopolitical element of jazz remains a guiding principle for jazzahead! 2024. Kornitschky and Bühler affirm that “Jazz has always had a political element to it.” The festival aims to revive jazz’s political stance, showcasing artists who incorporate anti-racist messages and societal reflections into their music.

As Sybille Kornitschky emphasizes, “Jazz is a music that unites people and is without boundaries.” Jazzahead! 2024 aspires to exemplify this unity, celebrating diversity, and setting an example for the broader community. Through its carefully curated program, the festival seeks to reaffirm jazz as a powerful force that transcends boundaries and connects people from all walks of life.

As the countdown begins to jazzahead! 2024, the anticipation builds for a three-day extravaganza that promises to captivate jazz enthusiasts and industry professionals alike. Stay tuned for detailed information on bands, concert timings, and venues, shaping up to be an unforgettable celebration of jazz in all its global glory.

The complete list of Showcase artists can be found below. For more information please visit the jazzahead! website.

Dutch Showcases
Alessandro Fongaro’s Pietre (NL)
Ben van Gelder & Reinier Baas (NL)
Guy Salamon Group (NL)
Kika Sprangers Large Ensemble (NL)
Marmoucha Orchestra (NL)
Raw Fish (NL)
Tineke Postma Aria Group (NL)

German Jazz Expo
Alexandra Ivanova Trio (DE)
Julia Kadel Trio (DE)
Phillip Dornbuschs Projektor (DE)
Rebecca Trescher Tentet (DE)
Shuteen Erdenebaatar Quartet (DE)

Overseas Showcases
Afro4Band (NG)
Alune Wade (SN)
Andy Milne and Unison (US)
Antiánima (MX)
Ariel Bart (IL)
Christine Kamau (KE)
Oran Etkin Open Arms Project (BR/US/IL)
Yonglee & the DOLTANG (KR)

European Showcases
Bálint Gyémánt (HU)
daoud (FR)
Fil (FR)
Kaisa’s Machine (FI)
Linda Fredriksson Juniper (FI)
Liv Andrea Hauge Trio (NO)
Mama Terra (GB)
Matt Carmichael (GB)
O.N.E. (PL)
Sinfonia de Carnaval (AT)
Sultan Stevenson (GB)
Trombone Ensemble Nabou Claerhout (BE)
Trondheim Jazz Orchestra & Marianna Sangita Røe “Spiti/Home” (NO)
Xavi Torres Trio “Quarantena Songs” (ES)
Yumi Ito (CH)

Last modified: February 16, 2024