Aarhus Jazz Festival

Aarhus Jazz Festival
Photo: jazzfest.dk
The Aarhus Jazz Festival, also known as the Aarhus International Jazz Festival, is an annual jazz festival held in the Danish city of Aarhus. It takes place every summer, running over eight days in July.

The Aarhus Jazz Festival was initiated in 1988 by the administration of Musikhuset Aarhus (Aarhus Concert Hall) and other local venues. Its founders wanted to create an event where international stars and new talents in jazz would meet and perform in front of a wide audience. The first festival took place in 1989. Over the years, it has grown to become the second largest jazz festival in Denmark and one of the country’s most anticipated summer events.

The festival offers rich and diverse programming, featuring over 200 shows at Musikhuset Aarhus as well as a plethora of other venues, big and small, throughout the city. There are many outdoor concerts in public spaces with free admission.

As we’ve already mentioned, the Aarhus Jazz Festival brings together up-and-coming performers and world-renowned jazz artists. Local and international jazz stars who have performed in Aarhus include John Scofield, Mike Stern, Clark Terry, The Zawinul Syndicate, Herbie Hancock, Dizzy Gillespie, Stan Getz, Dee Dee Bridgewater, George Benson, Kenny Garrett, and many others.

Alongside traditional and contemporary jazz, the festival encompasses other genres and styles of music which have evolved from jazz or have been influenced by it. The Aarhus Jazz Festival often includes famous blues performers such as John Mayall, Bonnie Raitt and B.B.King as well as representatives of alternative styles influenced by jazz like The Roots, Dr. John and Sting.

In 2014, it was announced that Aarhus had been chosen the 2017 European Capital of Culture. The festival’s team decided to shift the focus more towards European jazz. This will include first and foremost jazz artists and bands from Poland, since Wrocław was a European Capital of Culture in 2016.

Aarhus Jazz Festival

Photo: Poul Nyholm | jazzfest.dk




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