27th Summer Jazz Festival Kraków

Saturday, June 25, 2022 - Saturday, July 30, 2022

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  • Saturday, June 25, 2022 - Saturday, July 30, 2022
  • Wednesday, August 31, 2022, 8:00 PM
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Kraków has long been one of the brightest points on the map of Polish jazz.

Kraków is home to myriad clubs and an online radio station Jazzkultura based at the Białoprądnicki Manor; jazz is taught at a dedicated faculty at the Academy of Music and at the Krakow School of Jazz and Contemporary Music – there’s plenty going on year round!

Of course there are times when jazz is even livelier: the Summer Jazz Festival Kraków, held between late June and late July, is a huge event led by its founder and artistic director Witold Wnuk.

This year we can expect around 130 concerts (not counting Jazz Night!) held at Piwnica Pod Baranami, Harris Piano Jazz Bar, Manggha Museum, Kijów Cinema and the Kraków Philharmonic (25 June – 31 July and 31 August).

Poland will be represented by artists of several generations: legendary jazzmen including Ptaszyn Wróblewski, Włodzimierz Nahorny and Adam Makowicz, veterans such as Henryk Miśkiewicz, Hanna Banaszak, Krzysztof Ścierański, Marek Stryszowski, Marek Bałata, Lora Szafran, Stanisław Soyka, Bernard Maseli and Grażyna Auguścik, and younger musicians such as Dominik Wania, Piotr Wyleżoł, Tomasz Kudyk, Maciek Grzywacz and Marek Napiórkowski. Concerts by up-and-coming musicians are also promising. We will hear Kasia Pietrzko, the O.N.E. ensemble of young women specialising in refined acoustic jazz, Szymon Mika, Wojciech Myrczek, Mateusz Pałka and Alan Wykpisz.

Stars

The parade of global jazz stars kicks off with a concert by the acoustic trio of Al Di Meola (25 June) – one of the most creative and technically-skilled guitarists working in fusion and world music. He is mainly inspired by music of Mediterranean and Latino countries and flamenco, giving his tunes lively rhythms, vibrant colours, lyricism and a dose of nostalgia.

On 4 July, the Kraków Philharmonic resounds with Adam Bałdych Quintet, with Paolo Fresu appearing as special guest. Bałdych’s music is notable for its cantilenas with their soft, warm tones adorned with distinctive melodies rooted in ethno sounds. He reaches for all techniques and articulations available to violinists in his improvisations, as well as inventing his own tricks including bold sonic effects. He is involved with the Munich-based ACT Music label for whom he has recorded several albums; he is joined on his latest, Poetry, by Paolo Fresu. The Sardinian trumpeter and composer, keen on recalling Miles Davis from his cool period, moves in a wide stylistic spectrum: he writes jazz themes, avant-garde, theatre and film music and songs and dance tunes, and develops multimedia projects.

On 8 July, Kijów Cinema resounds with a quintet led by Kenny Garrett – acclaimed alto and soprano saxophonist and composer. He has worked with Jazz Messengers, Freddie Hubbard, Woody Shaw and Miles Davis, and his music is rooted in Coltrane’s heritage. He has even recorded an album titled Pursuance: The Music of John Coltrane. But post-bop with elements of modal and free jazz are just some aspects of his playing – his recordings with Corea, McLaughlin, Miller and Stern show he is equally at ease with fusion music.

The trio of Wolfgang Muthspiel, the acclaimed Austrian guitarist working in the US since the 1980s, appears at Piwnica Pod Baranami on 15 July. Since graduating from the Berklee College of Music he has recorded numerous albums, working alongside musicians such as Gary Burton, Marc Johnson, Larry Grenadier and Tom Harrell. He switches freely between acoustic and electric guitar. His performance style is distinguished by muted emotions, beautiful, even sounds and ornate harmonies.

On 30 July, we will hear John Scofield’s latest ensemble. Before he became the great Sco, he channelled his fascination with rock and blues by practicing guitar. He has worked with some of the greatest jazzmen, including Mulligan, Baker, Mingus, Burton, Seifert (Passion, 1979) and Davis (1982–1985). He is something of a musical chameleon, easily switching between styles as diverse as post-bop, fusion, funk and R&B. Scofield’s latest project, Yankee Go Home, is a return to his fascination with B.B. King, Neil Young, Bob Dylan and the cult rockers Grateful Dead.

On 31 August, the Auditorium Maximum of the Jagiellonian University welcomes Nigel Kennedy – an artist as charismatic as he is unpredictable. He is a natural virtuoso with incredible technique, explosive energy and a great sense of humour. He loves crossing boundaries, bringing together extremely different styles and breaking standards in terms of stage appearance. He adores Hendrix, and following his highly successful performance in 2019, he is returning with the repertoire of the legendary guitarist. Kennedy is accompanied by Mike Stern – an acclaimed funk-fusion guitarist and former collaborator of Davis. He is most comfortable as a soloist when he can present his dazzling technique intertwining jazz and rock. (Bogdan Chmura, ”Kraków Culture” magazine)

Main concerts:

Al di Meola Acoustic Trio
20.00 | 25.06.2022 | Kino Kijów

Adam Bałdych Quartet feat. Paolo Fresu
20.00 | 4.07.2022 | Filharmonia Krakowska

Kenny Garrett Quintet
20.00 | 08.07.2022 | Kino Kijów

Wolfgang Muthspiel Trio
20.00 | 17.07.2022 | Piwnica Pod Baranami

John Scofield Yankee Go Home
20.00 | 30.07.2022 | Kino Kijów

Nigel Kennedy Band feat. Mike Stern Tribute to Jimi Hendrix
20.00 | 31.08.2022 | Auditorium Maximum

Programme

(Click to enlarge!)

Source: press release

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