Press Release

Jazzaar Festival presents its 28th edition of the ‘Bandstand Learning with Role Models’ from April 13 – 18 in Aarau.

Two fantastic programmes in honour of jazz and funk legends plus a week full of fun activities in Aarau equally educational are planned for both participants and public alike. The two premiering concerts on the weekend will return to the KUK this year! But what’s Jazzaar without that hot jam session in the Restaurant Einstein to get a taste of what awaits at the weekend! This is planned for April 15 when local musicians are also most welcome to join the bandstand. In the spirit of celebrating Maynard Ferguson, the legendary trumpeter, on April 16 at 18:00h a film never viewed will be premiered, narrated live by his daughter Wilder Ferguson in the Kino Saal of the Stadtmuseum in Aarau. Besides that, our selected star musicians will present profound and candid workshops open to public every morning and evening of April 13 to 16 at the Alte Reithalle Ost. Finally, the intensive rehearsals, which is the heart of the programme, will have open doors on April 14 and 15 for anyone interested to catch a glimpse of the phenomenon of bandstand learning with role models! This year Jazzaar is also honoured to be a subject of an MIT research programme called COIN that will test the levels of joy of interaction between collaborating Jazz musicians, young and seasoned.

The ‘Swiss Youth Funk Ensemble’ (SYFE) under the direction of Gil Goldstein will present ‘Funky Weather’ on April 17th at the KuK – a musical reminiscence of the fusion quartet “Weather Report” of the 70s and 80s.  But imagine “Weather Report” in concert with an extended orchestra a’la Gil Evans, complete with flutes/clarinet, brass and saxophone quartets combined with harmonica and accordion! The repertoire presented here comprises the compositions of the legendary Jaco Pastorius, Joe Zawinul, Miroslav Vitous and Wayne Shorter as well as original compositions in the style by the accompanying guests. Miroslav Vitous, one of the founding members of the WR, will be joined by top international soloists such as Bill Evans on tenor saxophone, Grégoire Maret on harmonica, Anders Bostrom on flutes, Ned Wilkinson on tuba and Michael Baker on drums.

On April 18th at the KuK, big band fans will be treated to a Tribute to Maynard Ferguson with catchy jazz standards and original MF big band arrangements. Among featured guests here are three top lead trumpeters from the UK such as Ryan Quigley, Louis Dowdeswell and Andy Greenwood and five Maynard Ferguson Big Band alumni such as Tom Garling on trombone, Sal Giorgianni on alto sax, Christian Jacob on piano, Gildas Boclé on bass and Peter Erskine on drums. It will be a revival of the Big Band Bash with fever pitched trumpets and a smoking performance by Peter Erskine and co. in the rhythm section! Watch history in the making as the Swiss Youth Jazz Orchestra directed by Fritz K Renold catch the fever to get your feet tapping! In addition to the premiere concert, this production will also be performed in other Swiss cities.

Tickets for the concerts in Aarau are available online at Starticket and other points of sale. Free tickets are available per registration for concerts in Lugano.

A week of musical fest and three memorable concert evenings await us, which also serve to drive progress for young talents. Enjoy and do join us in support!

Download the PDF of Jazzaar 2020 programme booklet