For the third year in a row, Kultur | lx – Arts Council Luxembourg coordinated the Luxembourgish presence at jazzahead!, considered the most important meeting of the jazz industry.

Nicknamed “Luxemboogie”, the “Jazz from Luxembourg” stand brought together a delegation of 16 artists, promoters and managers from the Luxembourg scene. These three days of exchanges were a great opportunity for the members of the delegation to develop an international network and to present their projects to the international professionals present at the fair, especially during the “Jazz from Luxembourg” reception organised on 12th April.

Professional meetings such as jazzahead! are key moments in the life of Luxembourg jazz. They are an important occasion for the visibility and identification of Luxembourgish jazz, as well as for the extension of the international network of Kultur | lx, artists and professionals.

Committed to supporting emerging artists in the development of their careers, Kultur | lx supported the mobility of Veda Bartringer and Joël Metz, laureates of PropusionWOMEN and PropulsionBANDS.

The brochure “Jazz from Luxembourg” is available here:

Listen to the “Jazz from Luxembourg” playlist here:

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In collaboration with the USINA Festival, Kultur | lx – Arts Council Luxembourg will invite a delegation of European music industry professionals on Friday, May 31 and Saturday, June 01 to (re)discover and connect with Luxembourgish artists and professionals from the Rock/Pop/Electro/R’n’B/Hip-Hop genres. In addition to the USINA Festival at Neischmelz, further programme activities will take place at the 1535 Creative Hub in Differdange and CCRD opderschmelz in Dudelange. 

During the two Focus days, the guests will have the opportunity to experience showcase performances, meet the players of the local music landscape and thus get to know the creative potential of the Grand Duchy in the field of music. The programme will also include a pitching and a speedmeeting where local musicians and professionals will have the opportunity to present themselves and their projects directly to the international delegates.  

Short program overview:
Friday, May 31 – Welcome Reception & Showcase with Them Lights, Pleasing and MAZ Univerze @ 1535 Creative Hub
Saturday, June 1 – Pitching & Speed Networking Session @ CCRD opderschmelz | USINA Festival with CHAiLD, C’est Karma, Bartleby Delicate, Ryvage, Culture the Kid, CRO, Joris, English Teacher and Kids with Buns.

About the USINA Festival
USINA is a two-day collaborative festival organised by the Dudelange Town Council, De Gudde Wëllen, and den Atelier. The festival features a diverse artistic line-up of both local and international artists, spanning across music, theatre, dance, and visual arts. Discover the full line-up here.

Kultur | lx – Arts Council Luxembourg and the Like A Jazz Machine festival have been working closely to promote the Luxembourgish jazz scene for some years now. On May 10 and 11, Kultur | lx will invite a delegation of international professionals to discover the Luxembourgish acts featured at the festival.

Like A Jazz Machine will be presenting the not so new newcomers Jambal and LINQ, who are bringing a breath of fresh musical inspiration to the local scene, as well as saxophonist Maxime Bender’s collaboration with producer Napoleon Gold. The festival will also showcase the result of three residencies, that are a strong feature of the festival: the collaboration of the vocalist Claire Parsons with the drummer Ziv Ravitz and the guitarist Eran Har Even; On the Edge, a new project by the trumpet player Daniel Migliosi with his brand-new quintet; the gathering of Pascal Schumacher, Greg Lamy, Marc Demuth and Jeff Herr, four names that are known on the Luxembourgish jazz scene. To finish on a high note, Michel Meis and his project Kolibri will make the audience dance until the end of the night!

As for every Focus organised by Kultur | lx, the invited delegation will have the opportunity to (re)discover these artists and take part in networking activities to meet professionals, promoters and jazz artists from Luxembourg. Among other things, Kultur | lx will organise a speedmeeting session on May 11 to allow Luxembourgish and international delegations to exchange on future touring possibilities and collaborations.

Discover the full line-up of the festival here.

As part of its mission to promote and disseminate Luxembourg artists, Kultur | lx – Arts Council Luxembourg will be present for the third consecutive year at the jazzahead! trade fair in Bremen, Germany.

From 11 to 13 April, a delegation of musicians, managers and programmers representing the Luxembourg jazz scene will meet at the ‘Jazz From Luxembourg’ stand (6B50), which will be an important meeting point for all those involved in the Luxembourg jazz scene. They will have the opportunity to make contacts, exchange ideas, talk to international professionals and present their current and future projects.

In 2023, jazzahead! attracted 3,000 participants from 60 different countries. As the central platform for the jazz sector, it is an annual event in Bremen for formal and informal networking, showcases and conferences.

A brochure has also been published to present all the players in Luxembourg.

We would be delighted to welcome you at our stand 6B50 during the fair and for a networking reception on 12 April at 16h00!

Following 6 grants awarded in the field of visual arts to Vera Kox, Eric Schumacher, Yann Yannicchiarico, Anne-Mareike Hess and Elisabeth Schilling in the field of performing arts and Albena Petrovic in the field of music, the selection committees of Kultur | lx – Arts Council Luxembourg have awarded 5 grants in 2023 in the field of visual arts to:

• Baltzer Bisagno : Dove ? Perché ? Per chi ?
The current artistic development of Baltzer Bisagno marks the end of a cycle, and while it is still in progress, other paths are emerging or becoming clearer. It is therefore fundamental, and even constitutive, to inscribe this six-year period of significant research and production as an act of sedimentation of the questions raised up to that point from a complex critical perspective. It turns out that a book represents a pivotal moment in the creative process in terms of process and purpose. It is a work of art.
The collaboration with authors and curators will sketch out new paths, such as those called for by the work Arabesque.

• Ivana Cekovic
With the publication of a 120-page trilingual catalogue (English, French and Serbian), Ivana Cekovic aims to offer a panorama of the different periods of her work, including cycles of pictorial research, video work and interdisciplinary urban projects which, as well as marking her artistic career, have also left their mark on the history of Luxembourg.
With contributions from Dr Harry Lehmann, philosopher and researcher at the University of Luxembourg, Anastasia Chaguidouline, Artistic Director of Cercle Cité, Dr Nikola Suica, Professor at the Faculty of Fine Arts*, University of the Arts, Belgrade, former Chairman of the Board of the Belgrade Museum of Contemporary Art, Ante Glibota (1945-2020) art and architecture historian, Vice-President of the European Academy of Sciences, Arts and Letters.

• Catherine Lorent : RELEGATION SOUNDS
RELEGATION SOUNDS, Special sound edition and online documentation on the occasion of 10 years of RELEGATION by Catherine Lorent at the Luxembourg Pavilion, 55th Venice Biennale 2013.
First shown at the 55th Venice Biennale 2013 as a solo exhibition in the Luxembourg pavilion, RELEGATION celebrates its tenth anniversary in 2023 and Catherine Lorent aims to create a reenactment in the form of a sound publication and online documentation – in collaboration with performer Natasa Grujovic (accordion), Martin Eder (guitar) and Christian Neyes (sound engineer).

• Arny Schmit : Beyond Nature
On the occasion of his exhibition Beyond Nature at Galerie Reuter Bausch, Arny Schmit has published a book carrying the same title.

• Trixi Weis
Although the artist’s work has appeared in some forty catalogues and magazines since the start of her career in 1994, no monographic publication has ever been produced. Through this publication, she hopes to establish the thread of her work in a book.

 

Recent publication

Cover My Opera World by Albena Petrovic

My Opera World by
Albena Petrovic, L’octanphare, 25€
Albena Petrovic, recipient of the portfolio grant in 2022, published her book in November 2023, opening the door to her artistic universe through the eyes and expertise of journalists, musicologists and researchers. This book can be explored with the eyes, ears and hands, for anyone wishing to discover, understand and explore the creative immensity of Albena Petrovic’s resolutely feminine and contemporary vocal work.

This year’s festival season kicked off with a bang in the Netherlands: The Eurosonic Noorderslag Festival (ESNS), Europe’s largest live music showcase event, took place in Groningen from 17 to 20 January. Kultur | lx – Arts Council Luxembourg was actively engaged in promoting artists, networking, and participating in various conferences to gain insights into the future trends of the industry. A delegation of professionals from Luxembourg (including den Atelier, de Gudde Wëllen, Kulturfabrik, opderschmelz, Rotondes, Beast, Cooperations, Them Lights, Konektis Entertainment amongst others) also attended the showcase festival to foster connections, engage with industry experts, and explore emerging talents. Two Luxembourgish artists stood out in the packed festival line-up:  CHAiLD and C’est Karma.

On the opening night of the festival, CHAiLD wowed the international audience with a phenomenal performance at Simplon UP. With his appearance at ESNS and Reeperbahn Festival in September last year, CHAiLD has played both of Europe’s major showcase festivals in the space of just four months. This underlines his growing prominence on the European music scene.

C’est Karma (selected by Luxembourg’s public radio station 100,7) took the stage on Thursday in front of a packed house of delegates and fans at VERA, a legendary venue that hosted bands like Nirvana, U2, Sonic Youth and Soundgarden in the 1980s. As is common practice at showcase festivals, each performance at the ESNS is limited to a maximum of 40 minutes. In this short period of time, C’est Karma was able to completely captivate the audience and allow them to lose themselves in her fascinating musical cosmos. The performance  was recorded by the German public TV channel WDR and is set to air on their renowned program Rockpalast on the 18th of March 2024.

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Playing at ESNS not only means playing at the festival in January. Acts that play at the festival also take part in the ESNS Exchange programme. ESNS Exchange facilitates the booking of European acts at festivals outside their home countries and works with the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), export offices and local media (the Luxembourgish partner is 100,7) to generate significant media exposure for these artists. This way, ESNS Exchange aims to give a boost to the international careers of European artists.

The coming year will certainly have a lot in store for CHAiLD and C’est Karma.

Taller de Musics and Kultur | lx – Arts Council Luxembourg joined forces to create a jazz residency programme gathering musicians from Luxembourg. The idea was to encourage artistic collaborations, on the one hand, and the transmission between experienced and emerging artists, on the other hand.

For four days, Irene Reig, Marc Demuth, Arthur Clees and Andreu Giró Espasa worked together at the Fabra I Coats in Barcelona. The set they developed consists of compositions by the four musicians and was presented during two concerts: one at the Jamboree Club, Barcelona (21.11.23), and the other at neimënster, Luxembourg(26.11.23).

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To Marc Demuth, this kind of residency project is key to encourage artistic encounters. They contribute to establishing connexions between artists from different territories and backgrounds. “This should never be taken for granted”, Marc Demuth explains. “It is often in the context of studies that one connects with musicians/students from other countries but, in my opinion, it becomes increasingly difficult to build connections with jazz musicians from other countries once the studies are finished”. The artist also adds that the interactions with his peers from Barcelona let him understand the dynamics featuring the Barcelonese jazz scene.

For Arthur Clees, the musical contacts that he set up during this residency programme were a “great learning process and really inspired [his] creativity”.

Kultur | lx is fully committed in the implementation of such residency programmes, especially in the field of jazz. These working times give artists from different territories the opportunity to meet, exchange on their musical practices and open up their horizons on an international scale.

Sandrine Cantoreggi & Sheila Arnold | Mel Bonis: Entre Soir et Matin
Release date: December 1st 2023 | C-Avi Music

A late discovery of a most important female composer from France for the musical world. Melanie Helene Bonis, known by her artistic pseudonym Mel Bonis (21 January 1858 – 18 March 1937), was a Romantic composer in the late years of the 19th century and first half of the 20th century.

Her oeuvre includes more than 300 pieces: music for piano, chamber music in various formats, organ pieces, Lieder, choral music, a mass, and works for orchestra. Her teachers at the Paris Conservatoire included Cesar Franck, Ernest Guiraud and Auguste Bazille.

To her contemporaries’ surprise, Mel Bonis succeeded in the Paris society and was well regarded by her male composer fellows Camille Saint-Saens, her fellow student Claude Debussy and others. Some of her works have been officially published.

Sheila Arnold and Sandrine Cantoreggi initiated this album and discovered not only a piece – Soir – that was never played or recorded before, but kept her choice to play on period instruments (notably on a Bluethner Fortepiano 1871). Two Trios (one with Cello, the other with flute) embrace the program of small short pieces for Violin and Fortepiano, highlighting in particular the larger Violin Sonata, Op. 112.

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Sascha Ley, Laurent Payfert, Murat Öztürk, Jean-Pascal Boffo | AXIS MUNDI
Release date: 19 January 2024

Four years after the release of their last album, Sascha Ley and Laurent Payfert break away from the duo formula for an experiment in instant compositions with long-time friends and colleagues Jean Pascal Boffo and Murat Öztürk, whom they had already invited as special guests on the album It’s Alright To be Everywhere (JHM 2019). After the shock and repercussions of the great pandemic, the desire to dedicate themselves to improvisation during this recording in February 2023 was very strong.

With an intuitive spirit, the four virtuoso artists from different fields play with a high degree of freedom to invent sounds and melodies that reflect both their individuality and the universality of being in the present.

Their communication is a dialogue between themselves and the audience, stories that are told and shared, their music, an experimental blend of their sources of inspiration which range from jazz, progressive rock, chanson, classical and contemporary, to the performing arts and poetry.

This year was another year of praise for Luxembourg artists in the international press. Discover below the best quotes featuring jazz and classical music artists from Luxembourg.

Tele-Port, Please Disperse

“This quartet plays powerful, energetic, colourful and dense vibrations that explode like supernovas in the listener’s heart and body. Even in a ballad like Cloud Jumper, the sound is strong, rocketing like an Apollo that is about to take off, probably because the quartet is made up of outstanding musicians.” – Le Soir,  Jean-Claude Vantroyen, FR

 

Michel Meis, Lollipop Moment

“Explosive, edgy, provocative: the album features compositions incorporated in extensive and fearless free improvisations. As elaborate as it is spontaneous, Michel Meis’s 4tet breaks down the boundaries between genres, creating something truly avant-garde that refuses to be categorized.” – Jazz Trotter, France Musique, FR

 

Arthur Possing, ID:entity

“… nine small, fine, glittering, charming miniatures for the present, none longer than five minutes, graspable, technically demanding and yet full of natural beauty…” – Jazzthing, DE

 

Jambal, The Great Wave, Enterprises of great pith and moment

“The track is a delectable glimpse of the layered and cohesive sonic world of guitar riffs, melancholic keys, trumpet crescendos and intricate drum patterns that the album will offer us. With an emotive and expressive core that shines bright on each individual track, the album is set to be a showcase of continuitiy, individual brilliance and an instrumental celebration.” – Malvika Padin, Earmilk, UK

 

Dock in Absolute, [RE]flekt

“Not a single moment of distraction, not a second of boredom, as the trio sounds with such consistence that the iterative aspect of some sequences never lets one get bored, quite the contrary: this repetitive ritual supports creative, original, subtle and varied tracks.” – JazzMania, Jean-Pierre Goffin, BE

 

Greg Lamy & Flavio Boltro, Letting Go

“This highly successful new album exudes an astonishing elegance and refinement, an obvious simplicity (on both strings and brass) that surpasses any vain display of virtuosity, outlining a jazz that is limpid, airy, remarkably melodic and, from start to finish, of great beauty.” – Rolling Stone, Philippe Blanchet, FR

 

Claire Parsons & Laurent Peckels, The Aquatic Museum

“Between jazz, pop and contemporary music, fluid lines, dense orchestral arrangements and luxuriant harmonies, the clear, agile voice of [Claire Parsons] and her introspective lyrics, inhabited by flourishing inner worlds, navigate a vast field of possibilities and plunge us into an ambitious sonic experience inviting us to dream or philizophize.” – Catherine Carette, FIP

 

Naama Liany, Daydream

“Naama Liany’s brassy mezzo, always sincere, expresses several facets of dreaming between prayer, delirium and renouncing, through a programme called “Daydream”. This gathers several composers from the 20th and 21st centuries. From Albena Petrovic to Berstein’s young heroin (Barbara), French-Israeli singer Naama Liany offers a dip into the diversity of modern and contemporary compositions.” – Classique News, FR

C’est Karma

“Karma Catena loves pasta and hates the patriarchy, as you quickly realise on her website. Trained by independent, experimental female artists such as Björk, Kate Bush and Billie Eilish, her pop approach is minimalist-intimate and avant-garde at the same time.” – wdr.de, 09.12.2023

“Electro-art-pop with a touch of the theatrical. Somehow fascinating.” – Sounds and Books, 24.09.2023

“Karma performs like a superstar, fan in hand, commanding the stage like a pro.” – The Line Of Best Fit, 05.09.2023

 

CHAiLD

„Emotional music in danceable form has rarely sounded as haunting as with CHAiLD.” – Diffus Magazin, 03.09.2023

„CHAiLD’s melancholic universe is unveiled to us through a stripped-down production of piano chords and a faint drum and bass rhythm in the background. As the track unfolds, CHAiLD’s harmonies intensify until we encounter chilled electronic drum and bass beats. Through his music, CHAiLD emerges as a voice for the current generation of queer youth who seek self-expression.” – earmilk.com, 11.05.2023

 

DasRadial

“TheRADIAL sounds a little as if Kraftwerk had already taken it under their wing in the 80s and only now released it from their workshop.” – Diffus Magazin, 03.09.2023

 

Dreamcatcher

“True to its name, the band “Dream Catcher” from Luxembourg aims to capture dreams in songs. Their music is an interplay – sometimes melancholic and sensual, but then also full of energy and joy of life. The band’s spectrum ranges from Irish ballads and Celtic pop to French chansons and their own compositions. At live concerts, the musicians of “Dream Catcher” like to improvise and react spontaneously to the mood of the audience. This gives each performance its very own flavour.” – Westfalen-Blatt, 03.09.2023

 

Francis of Delirium

“There is a rousing energy in her music that enters you as if you were sitting on her bedside listening in. It is danceable, but also melancholic. It feels vulnerable, but also alive. Expect powerful rhythms, thundering riffs and intense lyrics about insecurity, vulnerability and fear. In short: music the new generation needs in these times.” – effenar.nl, 12.01.2023

“A restless energy and desire to connect with the listener lies at the core of the project, with Jana’s personal lyrics being underpinned by a fierce rock sound that is as liberating as it is intense.” – The Fat Angel sings, 15.11.2023

“Francis of Delirium’s music always has a tinge of nostalgia, of brooding; of the general melancholy some of us feel throughout our lives, that we can’t quite control.” – Atwood Magazine, 21.07.2023

“The 22-year-old songwriting – real name Jana Bahrich – caught attention with three wonderful EPs, blending absorbing use of melody with an increased maturity.” – Clash Magazine, 14.11.2023

 

Josh Island

“The Luxembourg singer-songwriter has a voice that simply makes you want to melt away. Songs like “Pennies From Heaven” and “Rewind” are great pop with a folk flavour.” – Diffus Magazin, 03.09.2023

 

MAZ

„His intense bastard of rap with pop and punk outbursts bangs particularly well live.” – Diffus Magazin, 03.09.2023

 

Plastiklova

“The electroacoustic duo Plastiklova creates a wholly engaging, wholly mysterious sound with their forays into improvised and lightly composed experimentation using vibraphone and a wide array of electronic processing. Fans of artists like Jason Doell, Animal Hospital and Harry Partch will find a lot to uncover here.” – tometotheweathermachine.com, 09.03.2023

“Their debut self-titled album is a daring exploration of the possibilities of sound, which forgoes melody or coherent structures in the name of breaking ground.” – notransmission.com, 07.02.2023

“Plastiklova invites listeners on an enchanting sonic journey with their captivating track ‘Grain Threshold’. This collaborative piece delves into the ambient magic of the bowed vibraphone, intertwining it with automated electronic responses from various synthesizers, resulting in a truly immersive and intriguing musical experience.” – electronica.org.uk, 07.06.2023

 

Pleasing

“Feeding itself to heavy rock and even metal in some places, Pleasing begins with a euphoric and synth driven opening, full of layered and drone-filled guitars, before his signature vocals enter the fore. ‘Feed me to those I envy the most’ feels like a true release from Patrick, with his uncontrollable screams coupled with the floaty and melodically beautiful atmospheres in moments, make for a truly encapsulating listen that switches mood to quickly and cleverly.” – tag.com.au, 12.06.2023

“Miranda was able to channel this energy into a cross-genre blend of explosive and hard-hitting heavy rock-infused songs, paired with spacey synths and raucous vocals about nothing but his darker feelings and truths.” – flexmusicblog.com, 12.06.2023

 

Ptolemea

“Priscila da Costa, with her magical voice, transports listeners to a sonic and spiritual adventure, with mystically fascinating songs, comforting sounds and captivating images that represent her intimacy and musical universe.” – descla.pt, 17.01.2023

“Ptolemea is a musical project with a very strong identity, in an alternative/experimental style, with original pagan rock and dark folk themes.” – Glam Magazine, 06.01.2023

“The sounds of Ptolemea are in other spheres in the centre of the universe and at the same time earthy. Dark folk that honours its pagan roots. The harmony of the sounds is always in balance, and so Priscila da Casto powerfully sings her way directly into the soul in “Balanced Darkness”. Sometimes exuberant and wild, sometimes pensive and melancholy, Ptolemea invite you into their own galaxy. It begins with the atmospheric instrumental “Hamanic Lullaby” and flows into the English-language “Atmospheric Pressure Drop”. The Portuguese “Fado” inspires with its very own dynamics and the remaining six songs will also captivate you.” – Orkus, März/April 2023

„Spherical vocals as if from another world and pumping heartbeat rhythms – this is the interesting scenario with which the Portuguese-Luxembourgish group Ptolemea, formed by Priscilla Da Costa, introduces their self-released debut, which is thematically based on the four elements.” – Metal Hammer, Februar 2023

„The immense spirituality and great charisma of frontwoman Priscila are enthroned above all of this. The result is highly emotional, soulful, esoteric and folk-tinged rock numbers such as “Atmospheric Pressure Drop”, “My Darkest Creature” and “Leap Of Faith”.” – Sonic Seducer, Februar 2023

„It is difficult to compare the sounds of PTOLEMEA with other bands, and this may be understood as praise.” – Legacy, Januar/Februar 2023

 

ROME

“The album’s songs subtly and incisively convey the full spectrum of emotions a full-scale war elicits. Equipped with a profound comprehension of the war’s dynamics, Rome serves as a capable interpreter for English-speaking audiences. Infused with an agreeable and well-conveyed sound, coupled with references to shared symbols and emotions of this war, Rome’s music becomes a skillful reflection of history—and of the present, while the war continues.” – Euromaidan Press, 15.09.2023

 

Say Yes Dog

“In the melting pot of independent music and synth-pop, all shades of Say Yes Dog have found their most beautiful form on “DRÄI”. The dogs are barking again – finally!” – Tonspion, 03.11.2023

 

Seed to Tree

“After thirteen years as a band, Seed to Tree have made an impressive musical journey. They have evolved from acoustic sounds to a synth and dream pop band.” – musik3000.de, 11.07.2023

“Musically, Seed to Tree know how to create catchy melodies that are not only catchy, but also manage to explore new, exciting dream pop paths without losing the acoustic folk elements of their early phase.” – Frontstage Magazine, 01.06.2023 

“A Little Life reveals the astounding pop quality of songwriting as it searches for universal truth in the little things of life.” – PrettyInNoise, 25.11.2023

“Starting from an elaborate indie pop base, Seed To Tree develop atmospheric, varied songs, through which singer Georges Goerens leads with a delicate, warm voice. Dream-pop synths create a dreamy atmosphere, reduced but precise drums set the rhythm and deliberately unrocky guitars that tend towards shoegaze ground the songs.” – soundmag.de, 05.09.2023

 

Tuys

“High-energy live shows provide the antithesis to TUYS’ sophisticated videos. The four guys love to play with fiction and satire, but as soon as the spotlights come on, there’s only the reality of the stage.” – kulturnews.de, 23.02.2023