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INTERNATIONAL JAZZ FESTIVAL IN KOŠICE HOSTS MAINLY DUTCH BANDS

Jazz it up in the east of Slovakia

BEFORE Bratislava Jazz Days roll on in, in the middle of October, jazz fans can savour live jazz at the opposite end of the country, in the eastern city of Košice.
On October 3 and 4, eight international jazz bands will come to perform at the 9th International Jazz Festival, in Košice. Half of them will be from the Netherlands.


JAZZMAN Peter Lipa is creative in his improvisation anytime.
photo: TASR

BEFORE Bratislava Jazz Days roll on in, in the middle of October, jazz fans can savour live jazz at the opposite end of the country, in the eastern city of Košice.

On October 3 and 4, eight international jazz bands will come to perform at the 9th International Jazz Festival, in Košice. Half of them will be from the Netherlands.

According to festival organisers, each year of the festival is unique, and each one brings more and more foreign musicians to the city, to play along with the locals. And who will be this year's headliner?

"All of them," the organisers said.

The first day of the festival will feature Dutch Systéme D Trion, and The Michiel Braam Trio. The former is a duo, composed of singer Mola Sylla, and violoncellist Ernst Reijseger, who will come to play as a trio together with Serigne Gueye, a percussionist playing traditional instruments from Senegal. The repertoire of the second band is based on texts by American Ken Nordine that describe 34 different colours. For each of the colours, pianist Michiel Braam wrote a short musical piece that the band uses as a starting point for improvisations during concerts. The Braam trio's other members include bass player Wilbert de Joode, and drummer Michael Vatcher, who will be substituted by Steve Heather from Australia, at the Košice festival.

The other bands that evening will be the Polish-American-Cuban-Slovak project Tribute to Miles, and the Mescall Jazz Unid, from France. The international jazz sextet Tribute to Miles will take the stage with a programme dedicated to the work of jazz legend Miles Davis, from the time he spent working with tenor-saxophonist John Coltrane, and alto-saxophonist Cannonball Addeley. The Mescall Jazz Unid, playing their own music mixed with contemporary French jazz trends, is known for building a close relationship with its the audience during their concerts.


BENJAMIN Herman on sax.
photo: Cees van de Ven

On the second day of the festival, Saturday, the audience will again hear two concerts performed by Dutch bands - The Benjamin Herman Quartet and the Eric Vloeimans Trio. Successful alto-saxophonist Benjamin Herman will play with guitarist Jesse van Ruller, double bassist Jos Machtel, and drummer Flin van Hemmen. A trumpeter and composer in various music styles, Eric Vloeimans, will present his trio, which includes pianist Harmen Fraanje, and guitarist Anton Goudsmit.

Slovak singer Peter Lipa, with his band, and Jiří Stivín, with The CO Jazz Quartet, from the Czech Republic, will close the evening's block on Saturday. Stivín, who plays renaissance and baroque music as well as improvises on all kinds of flutes, will perform, accompanied by guitarist Jaroslav Šindler, bass guitarist Zdeněk Tichoty, and drummer Michal Hejna.

Lipa, the main organiser of the jazz scene in the country, including Slovakia's largest jazz festival, Bratislava Jazz Days, will play with keyboardist Juraj Tatár, bass guitarist Martin Gašpar, drummer Marcel Buntaj, and saxophonist Michal Žáček.

On both days, the four-block concerts will start at 18:00, at the GES Agency on Námestie L. Novomestského 13, Košice. Tickets for each block cost Sk199 and Sk250. For more information visit www.ges.sk or call 055/7299-211.

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