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The International Jazz Festival in Sibiu begins!

Tuesday, 22 May 2018 , ora 12.15

A new edition of the International Jazz Festival will take place in Sibiu between 17th and 20th of May, an event that is awaited every year and is reconfigurated according to the latest tendencies. But we have more details in an interview offered by Simona Maxim, the executive director of the festival:

The whole jazz-loving Romania knows the profile, the scale, the longevity of the International Jazz Festival in Sibiu. Simona Maxim, how would you present this 48th edition?

The 48th edition is not very different from the editions in the recent years. The Jazz Festival in Sibiu encompasses from an artistic point of view a lot of colour and diversity through the musical projects it presents - heterogeneous combinations that attract, create a special atmosphere. This is why I think the Jazz Festival in Sibiu stands out in the market festivals in the country.

Do you encourage in Sibiu the traditional values of jazz or will you go on the line of the exprimental jazz? Are you open even this time to the avant-garde innovation?

We have projects in both of the areas you have mentioned. We have a classic line that presents a worthy contemporary jazz in the country and also at the European level. I am talking about projects such as KRiSPER from Romania, Sorin Zlat Quartet, and internationally, Pol Belardi (Luxembourg), NES band, Balazs Balogh Quintet from Hungary - a contemporary, modern, powerful and extremely creative jazz. On the other hand, we have projects that lead us to the exotic area - an impresive trio, Brönnimann-Cissokho-Hason (Switzerland, Senegal, Israel): African sounds, Oriental grooves - all mixed in this melting pot that jazz music offers and generates.

In 17 years since I took charge with the festival, the concerts in Sibiu have never been broadcasted to the Radio. This year we will be able to do this partnership. All the musicians have agreed to recordings, including their broadcast on the EBU network.

It appears on the website of the festival Sibiu Jazz Meeting - Promoting Romanian Jazz. Could you give us some more details?

It is a pilot program that we started last year. We organized for the first time in Romania as a related event of the jazz festival a series of concerts that promotes Romanian musicians. The concerts are broadcasted live online on all social media and promoted by us on the Europe Jazz Network - the most important European network of jazz organizers and promoters. We offer, thus, the chance to the Romanian artists to present their music, to draw attention to their creation and hopefully to be invited to more concerts abroad.

We understand that neither this time you forgot about the kids through the Jazz for kids program. How do you intend to make them familiar with this kind of music?

The main method that fits the kids is the game. I invited the artists that perform at the festival to play with the little ones, a creative, exciting play, especially since the person that will connect them with music is even a percussionist - Andrei Marcovici (member of the State Philharmonic Orchestra of Sibiu, in the Icon Art Ensemble and in the Bourbon Jazz Unit band). Children will receive small percussion instruments and they will be guided to use them.

In other words, you create a new audience category for the International Jazz Festival in Sibiu.

We hope so.

Some other names you are proud of in this edition...

We will present on the very first day of the festival a special project, the VEIN band from Switzerland, which wil have as a special guest Rick Margitza - one of the most important saxophonists of the current jazz scene. A crowning moment will be on Saturday - the last concert of the evening that will be performed by the French band NoJazz whose music encompasses soul, funk, the music of the 80's, but combined with very actual electronic rhythms and sounds. The NoJazz's latest album has as guests Stevie Wonder and Maurice White. On Sunday, in the last day of the festival, we will present two special projects; it is about the NES band whose repertoire easily passes from jazz to soul, Arabic sounds and French tonalities - a very attractive melange. We have decided to end this edition of the Sibiu Jazz Festival in lyrical tones backed by an extraordinary duo, a music that goes to the heart. It is about the Machado/Ithursarry Duo - piano and accordion.

We look forward to seeing you in Sibiu between 17th and 20th of May. We are preparing for a rhythmic atmosphere and good music...

And a new location, as far as I understood.

Indeed, we are waiting for you in the Grand Square of the City. The last edition of the Sibiu Jazz Festival, which took place in the Grand Square, was in 1995. The audience then lived unforgettable moments by listening to Jan Garbarek, while next to the Council Tower it was a huge full moon. We would like to create again this year a great atmosphere for our audience. You're welcome!

Interview by Marina Nedelcu
Translated by Georgiana Nuțu, MTTLC, An I
Proofreading: Mihaela Ghițescu, MTTLC An II