The Bratislava Jazz Days festival will for the 25th year again fill the Main Hall of the Culture and Leisure Park (PKO) with jazz after taking a year off in 1999. From October 20 to 22, jazz fans will have the opportunity to view live concerts by almost 20 international jazz, swing, jazz-rock or avant-garde legends playing Slovakia for the first time.
Each evening offers visitors several eclectic jazz concerts on two stages culminating with a single main performance.
Friday, October 20
The first evening will feature American jazz and pop star Bebel Gilberto, the daughter of Brazilian legend Joao Gilberta. Bebel plays Brazilian tunes mixing traditional samba and bossa nova with modern pop stylings. Bebel's performance will be preceded by the French Philip Catherine Trio. Catherine, the leader of the group and its guitar player, was awarded the best European jazz artist award in 1998. Electric Jazz Force, a young electric jazz-rock Hungarian band, will perform as will the Czech and Slovak Gustav Brom Big Band orchestra playing modern jazz, rock, funk and swing.
The second stage at the PKO Community Hall will showcase Polish singer Ewa Uryga, Slovak Hot Sound Dixie Band, and PS Quartet, an internationally mixed group with a Czech saxophonist, Polish guitarist and drummer, and Slovak bass player.
Saturday, October 21
American Kurt Elling, the jazz scat and poetry vocalist, will highlight the second evening. Before him, American tenor-saxophonist Lew Tabackin will peform, as will the American-Slovak duo of guitarist Ron Affif (who has written a jazz opera) and bassist Juraj Griglák. Zimbabwean band Busi Ncube & Rain will present original African music influenced by gospel and funk.
The second stage in Community Hall will be bombarded by saxophonists, including Slovak Dušan Húščava and his Jazz Quintet starring bassist Andrej Šeban, and American Peter Cardarelli with his Quartet band.
Sunday, October 22
The concluding evening brings tenor-saxophonist James Carter and his Electric Groove Band. Laco Deczi, who formed the Cellula New York Band in the US, British saxophonist Tommy Smith, and cool harmony band Capella Con Durezz, will also grace the main stage.
The second stage will host the Danish Dieter Kohnlein Trio, with music ranging from blues to Latin jazz. The French Bertrand Renaudin Trio will wrap up the evening.
Concerts begin Fri-Sat at 19:00, Sun at 18:00 and are held at Estrádna and Spoločenská Halls at the PKO - Park Kultúry a Oddychu (Culture and Leisure Park), on Nábrežie arm. Gen. L. Svobodu 3. Tickets for single evening passes cost 320 Sk in advance, 360 Sk at the door. Three day passes cost 850 Sk. Tickets can be bought at the PKO shop on Hviezdoslavovo námestie 24, tel: 5443 3867, or at the Dr. Horák shop on Medená 19, tel: 5443 5667.