Mondriaan Jazz Festival MJAZZ translates Mondriaan’s love for jazz music to an international autumn festival. The line-up has a contemporary and cutting-edge touch, in which the future of (jazz) music in all its shapes and sizes is closely monitored. A voyage of discovery in which unique international collaborations are curated and contemporary scenes are celebrated.
This year, among others, innovators from the progressive Chicago jazz scene are the focus of attention. Chicago has for years been on the forefront of avant-garde trends in jazz. Innovators such as Makaya McCraven, Jeff Parker and Ben LaMar Gay have a prominent place in this years’ program.
In addition to the Chicago line, the central theme of this edition is to bring together contemporary ‘great spirits’. Hence, in the main hall of Paard venue, only exclusively curated groups will be presented: unique collaborations and one-off combinations, in which the artists themselves and the listener are challenged. For the first time, Dutch trumpeter Eric Vloeimans ventures into Indian classical music together with the special collective, the Brooklyn Raga Massive, focusing on the music of John and Alice Coltrane. The super group ‘Universal Beings’ was put together by the festival around the innovative drummer Makaya McCraven, featuring Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, harpist Brandee Younger, saxophonist / rapper Soweto Kinch and others. In collaboration with New York-based Revive Music (Blue Note Records), the festival curated a second supergroup, around one of the most sought-after drummers of the moment, Marcus Gilmore. Gilmore brings along the young Cuban prodigy on keys David Virelles, New York’s Secret Weapon, BigYuki, and two-time Grammy winner, saxophonist and vocalist Casey Benjamin. Last but not least, the festival will bring together two of Holland’s forerunners in progressive jazz and electronica, multi-instrumentalist Binkbeats (Frank Wienk) and keyboardist Niels Broos together with one of their great sources of inspiration, Lars Horntveth from Norway (known from Jaga Jazzist, Todd Terje and A-ha).
In the beautiful theatre room of Koorenhuis one can discover, the celebrated trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire and his Quartet, the international debut of the group Spirit Fingers and the Dutch debut of Norwegian-ensemble Time Is A Blind Guide. Closing the night in style is the Australian cult group The Necks, which will be performing in The Hague for the first time.
Special talent can be found in Paard’s small hall and Paardcafé, with among others the lead guitarist of funk sensations Vulfpeck, Cory Wong, the beautiful voices of UK sensation Yazmin Lacey and Irish folk singer Marc O’Reilly who plays together with the Danish jazz bassist Jasper Høiby and the exceptional talent of (again) multi-instrumentalist Nate Wood and his project fOUR.
Finally, the renowned author and jazz historian Ashley Kahn will lead two panel discussions at Koorenhuis, where top guitarist Jeff Parker will play a solo set between the two sessions. Be sure to join us at the special opening concert of pianist Shai Maestro and his trio – reservation required! – in the theatre hall at Koorenhuis on Friday evening October 12.
All in all, Mondriaan-approved!