This spring, Kultur | lx – Arts Council Luxembourg will give enthusiastic readers an opportunity to discover and explore the diversity of Luxembourg’s literary and book publishing scene with booths at both the Brussels Book Fair and Leipzig Book Fair.
This will be Kultur | lx – Arts Council Luxembourg’s first time exhibiting at the Luxembourg booth at these two major events.
Four Luxembourg publishers – Capybarabooks, Hydre Edition, Kiwi E.L.G. and PassaParola Editions – have opted to take advantage of this opportunity to exhibit their latest French-language releases in literature, non-fiction and children’s books at the Brussels Book Fair (30 March to 2 April 2023 on the booth “Livres du Luxembourg” – n°209).
And at the Leipzig Book Fair, the second largest in Germany, which this year will be held from 27 to 30 April, six Luxembourg publishers – Black Fountain Press, Capybarabooks, Editions Guy Binsfeld, Hydre Editions, Kremart Editions, Point Nemo Publishing – will present their new spring releases.
Not only are these fairs critically important for helping boost the profile of Luxembourg works and authors – through the organisation of readings and the presentation of authors attending the events — but they are also a platform where professionals can meet up and discuss and debate issues, while serving as the perfect venue for the general public to discover Luxembourg authors and find out just how diverse the Luxembourg book sector actually is.
- At the Brussels book fair, there will be a reading and discussion on Transgressions and feminist perspectives with Tullio Forgiarini and Nathalie Ronvaux on Sunday, 2 April at 10:00 a.m.;
- At the Leipzig Book Fair, Maxime Weber, Claire Schmartz, Samuel Hamen, Nico Helminger (heteronym: Tomas Bjørnstad) will engage in readings, discussions and a debate on What if…? Between fiction and speculation.
To promote the publishers and authors present at these fairs to a wider readership at home with the bookstagram phenomenon, Kultur | lx has developed a new video format that will be released on 15 March on Instagram only.
Continuing to connect the Luxembourg performing arts sector with those of neighbouring countries, Kultur | lx organised a second field trip to Belgium, following the visit to Brussels in May 2022. This time, the meetings focused on the French-speaking area.
This meeting was organised with the aim of allowing artists, independent collectives and production companies from Luxembourg to discover their peers with the aim of nurturing cross-border collaborations.
A delegation of twelve artists and other performing arts professionals from all disciplines took advantage of this unique opportunity to meet the managements and discover the venues of the Wallonia-Brussels federation: the Théâtre and CCN of Namur, the Théâtre National Wallonie-Bruxelles, the Théâtre des Martyrs, the Halles de Schaerbeek, MARS – Mons arts de la scène, Charleroi danse, the Théâtre de l’Ancre and the Théâtre de Liège.
This visit was an opportunity for some to strengthen ties forged during their studies in Belgium or through past collaborations, and for others it allowed them to open doors that were previously difficult to open. It was certainly a reminder of the geographical and cultural proximity and the many areas of exchange that exist and can be developed between Belgium and Luxembourg.
“I very much appreciated this field trip of the performing arts in Wallonia. The meeting between several cultural actors from different countries was greatly facilitated by this initiative. I also discovered more about the directors’ vision of their cultural institution, which allowed me to better understand their respective expectations. The meetings were also very enriching thanks to the sharing of experiences and the discovery of each other’s projects. This initiative is very relevant for the deployment of Luxembourg’s performing arts, thank you!” commented Paloma Georges from Bombyx, an artists’ collective, about this trip.
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This year, Fifty Lab is inviting the most promising upcoming talents for three days throughout iconic venues in the heart of Brussels. A unique take on the traditional showcase festival, Fifty Lab takes recommendations from some of the most influential Belgian and international musical programmers (i.e. Primavera Sound, Down the Rabbit Hole, Montreux Jazz Festival, Pukkelpop, Couleur Café, and Luxembourg’s very own Siren’s Call Festival). The audience will discover the next musical crushes from all genres and nationalities.
Kultur | lx is proud to be presenting the first Luxembourgish artist at Fifty Lab, MAZ. Risen out of the ashes of early 2000’s Metal and Rock influences, MAZ is known for delivering a powerful and truthful message to his audiences with a determination to not only scratch at the surface, but to tear through it and see what lies underneath. With a sharpened musical and visual identity, the young rapper wants to give the voiceless not just a voice, but also an uncompromising vision and thus urging his listeners to drop the self-imposed masks and all other unnecessary superficialities to eventually find their true selves.
Want to join MAZ Friday, November 18th at Fifty Lab? Kultur | lx is inviting a small Luxembourgish delegation to attend the festival. Professionals can apply for financial support to attend via the Kultur | lx “Support for mobility, research and career development.” More details here.
MAZ at Fifty Lab
Friday November 18th
8:40 – 9:20 PM | L’ARCHIDUC
More information here.
On the occasion of the Kunstenfestivaldesarts, one of the most important events for the performing arts in Europe, Kultur | lx organised a programme of professional meetings with the main actors of the Brussels scene.
This meeting was organised with the aim of allowing artists, independent collectives and production companies from Luxembourg to discover their neighbours with a view to fostering cross-border collaborations. A dozen professionals met and exchanged ideas over three days of programming.
The participants were able to get to know historical companies such as Need Company, Ultima Vez and Crew, but also Kunstenwerkplaats, the residency programme of the Pianofabriek cultural centre and the new directions of the Varia, Tanneurs and Balsamine theatres as well as Kunstenfestivaldesarts and Les Brigittines. In addition to their respective artistic backgrounds and lines, each of them was able to express their commitment to international cooperation and their interest in Luxembourg. For the Luxembourg participants, it was also an opportunity to get to know the production, distribution and public support system in Belgium.
“Three rich and wonderful days in one of my favourite cities […]. We were meeting Théâtre and festival directors as well as professionals who generously shared their cultural philosophies, practices and politics. We learned a lot about the particularity of the Belgian performing arts sector, about the complex nature of the different communities and governments, the particular dual situation of Brussels, the difficulties, opportunities and richness this creates, and the intentions and attempts to bridge them,” commented Tania Soubry on her Instagram account about the trip.
At the end of a crisis that has disrupted the means of creation and dissemination, Belgium’s close example offers great potential for the Luxembourg scene.
As part of its mission to promote and disseminate Luxembourg culture, Kultur | lx organised two evenings in partnership with the Luxembourg embassy in Belgium and the Jazz Station to present Luxembourg jazz musicians. With the |lx jazz nights, Kultur | lx wishes to get closer to the musical ecosystem and professionals of a given territory in order to facilitate the export of Luxembourgish artists.
The |lx jazz nights featured Reis/Demuth/Wiltgen and Claire Parsons on 12 November, and the Arthur Possing Quartet and the Michel Meis Quartet on 13 November. In front of a sold-out Jazz Station on Friday, filled with an enthusiastic audience, each artist had an occasion to present excerpts and compositions from their latest albums.
The Reis/Demuth/Wiltgen Trio (Michel Reis, piano, Marc Demuth, double bass, Paul Wiltgen, drums) once again showed the extent of their talent for musical interpretation through compositions from Sly, released in 2021 (Cam Jazz).
“The role of double bassist Marc Demuth, who has a very nice momentum in his playing and who never stops driving the trio, was particularly striking. Either melodically complementing the piano lines or pushing Reis and Wiltgen to give a little more flavour, energy. It’s nice to see that.”, Written in music
Claire Parsons, surrounded by her quintet (Jérôme Klein, piano, Niels Engel – drums, Pol Belardi – bass, Eran Har Even – guitar), inspired the audience and rounded off the first evening in style with her ambitious songs and compositions from the album In Geometry’, released in 2020.
The second chapter of this weekend dedicated to Luxembourg jazz was opened by Michel Meis’ quartet (Alisa Klein – Trombone, Stephan Goldbach – Double Bass, Antoine Spranger – Piano) who, led by the drummer, delivered a beautiful performance of their album Kaboom.
“In the course of the show, the quartet shows what it is capable of when drummer/conductor Meis, (…) leads the musicians and the sound thickens. This is exactly what the quartet needs to end the set on a high note”, Written in music
Finally, Arthur Possing, supported by the talented Pierre Cocq-Amann on saxophone, Niels Engel on drums, Sebastian ‘Schlabpe’ Flach on double bass and special guest trumpeter Thomas Mayade, closed the evening with tracks from the critically acclaimed album Natural Flow.
Kultur | lx would like to thank the musicians, the Luxembourg embassy in Belgium and the Jazz Station for the success of these two |lx jazz nights!
As part of its missions of promotion and diffusion of the Luxembourgish culture, Kultur | lx organises in partnership with the embassy of Luxembourg in Belgium and the Jazz Station, two evenings of presentation of the Luxembourgish jazz musicians, having all beautiful international careers.
These evenings are a great opportunity to showcase these artists and to make them known to the general public and professionals of the Belgian scene.
This year, the Jazz Station opens its doors for two evenings on November 12 and 13, 2021!
We invite you to join us on Friday 12 November with Claire Parsons andReis Demuth Wiltgen, and on Saturday 13 November Michel Meis 4tet and Arthur Possing 4tet will share stage.
Two evenings of musical discoveries not to be missed, in this unmissable place that is the Jazz Station for the Belgian scene!
Reis / Demuth / Wiltgen
Michel Reis – piano / Marc Demuth – double bass / Paul Wiltgen – drums
These three acolytes have built a solid reputation on the international scene. Magnifying the natural elegance of the famous triptych piano/double bass/drums, here are three musicians who put their personal qualities at the service of a subject of beautiful aesthetic ambition. After three internationally and unanimously acclaimed albums, a tour accompanied by the legendary American saxophonist Joshua Redman, the trio presents their fourth opus: “Sly” (Cam Jazz). Attract attention without resorting to superfluous effects, but instead tell stories that captivate and create emotions. Three exceptional talents who have unearthed over the years range him beyond the abundant stereotypes. Contagious groove, talking improvisations, multiple alternating rhythms, the nine tracks of this new album confirm the solid artistic identity of the trio. “Sly like a fox.” A piano trio, of course. Astonishing, exciting, touching.
Claire Parsons ’In Geometry’ «Quintet»
Claire Parsons – vocals, compositions, lyrics / Eran Har Even – guitar / Jérôme Klein – piano, keyboards, percussions / Pol Belardi – bass / Niels Engel – drums
This project is a multinational collaboration between Luxembourg / British singer Claire Parsons, Israeli guitarist Eran Har Even, Franco-Luxembourg drummer and pianist Jérôme Klein, Luxembourg bassist Pol Belardi and drummer Niels Engel. The project is based in Luxembourg, Brussels and Amsterdam and makes a rich contribution to the sounds of constantly evolving modern European jazz.
“In Geometry” was born out of the desire to form a creative connection and to blend the diverse experiences of musicians through Claire’s original compositions. Each of the musicians brings their own vision and style to the music and thus creates an intimate and exciting atmosphere with the intention of creating harmony and balance in the existing environment.
Arthur Possing Quartet ft. Thomas Mayade
Arthur Possing – piano, compositions / Thomas Mayade – trumpet / Pierre Cocq-Amann – saxophones, compositions / Sebastian “Schlapbe“ Flach – double bass, effects, compositions / Niels Engels – drums
The repertoire of this quartet is made up of personal compositions, as well as pieces by jazzmen that the group is particularly fond of. They offer us a modern jazz, which however cares to maintain a link with tradition, by mixing influences from all sides. The first album “Four Years”, released in March 2018 on the Belgian label Hypnote Records, was warmly received by the public and the press and won the “Hit” of Couleurs Jazz in France.
Today, they return to the Jazz Station to present us the second opus: “Natural Flow”. In the continuity of “Four Years”, the group continues its exploration in order to offer innovative and sought-after sounds, which gives it a unique DNA. The musicians recorded the album at Peter Gabriel’s famous Real World Studios in Box (UK), which are among the most renowned studios in the world. They are home to a range of the best audio equipment ever made.
Michel Meis 4tet
Michel Meis – drums / Alisa Klein – trombone / Cédric Hanriot – piano / Stephan Goldbach – double bass
“Kaboom”, second album by Michel Meis’ quartet, is a real sound explosion. Oscillating between the muscular sound of a Big Band from which the powerful trombone of Alisa Klein emerges, atmospheres of a smoky piano-bar where the catchy keyboard melodies by Cédric Hanriot hover and the elegant double bass of Stephan Goldbach, the group there continues the work started with his first album, offering music that is at the same time complex, playful, dancing and melancholic. This diversity is crystallized in the playing of the young drummer, who fully assumes there a hybrid identity between the inside side of his rock-hardcore heritage and the complex and muffled rhythm of jazz. In addition to his usual acolytes, Michel Meis surrounded himself with the violinist Theo Ceccaldi for an album with a long breath, the discovery of which is similar to a crossing both dazzling and unpredictable of genres, tones, atmospheres, dusting the jazz by bringing in elements from (post-) rock or classical music. From State of Uncertainty, written during the first confinement, to the final Re:build, the album reproduces the uncertainties of the world we live in – but also the possible construction of a better tomorrow.
The BPS22 Museum of Art in Charleroi, Hainaut Province, is getting ready to welcome the second event in the first monographic museum exhibition of the Brognon Rollin artistic duo from October 09th, 2021 to January 09th, 2022. Co-produced with the MAC VAL in Vitry-sur-Seine, France, this exhibition represents a perspective of their work from the past 15 years. It includes exclusive new creations such as Yamina, the longest neon lifeline they have ever produced. This perspective underlines the uniqueness of their definitive world and their consistent approach.
Born respectively in 1978 and 1980 in Messancy (Belgium) and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, David Brognon and Stéphanie Rollin have spent almost 15 years creating multifaceted work, guided by great conceptual and ethical demands. This is reflected in their first large-scale museum exhibition, shown internationally in two events: the first at the MAC VAL in France in 2020, and now in Belgium.
Under the title L’avant-dernière version de la réalité, borrowed from the writer Luis Borges, they develop a recurring question: does reality exist outside of its representations? And more specifically, what does this mean about its time and perception? Its relativity? Its spatial dimensions? How can we shape the experience of time passing? Or that of anticipation or suspense?
In a selection of approximately 40 works, including several new productions at each event (such as Yamina, at 27 metres the longest neon lifeline the two artists have ever created and produced especially for the BPS22), the exhibition traces the main phases of the pair’s artistic journey. Consequently a thread of recurring issues weaves its way between the different works, giving the exhibition its overwhelming consistency.
“The venue of the BPS22 being different from the MAC VAL, the scenography of the exhibition has been rethought offering the implementation of a real path in space and allowing the pieces of art to dialogue with each other“, explains David Brognon. This is further emphasised by the use of ambitious staging: greyish, inconclusive hues envelope the walls and floor, while perfectly adjusted circles of light pick out the works and frames within a hushed atmosphere, conducive to meditation and reflection. With this powerful staging, the artists have imagined the exhibition as a global installation, inviting visitors to perceive it as a whole.
“The exhibition is more immersive like “Yamina” which allows visitors to dive into the palm of this hand, and thus offer a fairly direct relationship with the history of these men and women married by force, “concludes the designer.
ABOUT BROGNON ROLLIN
For almost 15 years, the Brognon Rollin duo have created multifaceted work, with an almost obsessive obstinacy that places humanity at the centre of all their artistic images. Sharp observers of some of society’s actions, the artists create works that fall within the history of minimalist art and express great sensitivity in their design and the context of their creations.
Great sensitivity being a twofold sensitivity. This is the advantage of a well-balanced duo. ‘We have to agree 100% that a piece should be shown publicly. This pact means that our production is rather slow, but it does mean that it’s fair. Because we don’t approach an issue in the same way, when we do agree about the purpose, that means the piece is finished.’ (Stéphanie Rollin); ‘We have two different perceptions on the same situation, but we both want the same thing, we want to process it in the same way. So every piece is an accurate representation of what she feels and what I feel.’ (David Brognon).
Andrea Mancini (alias Cleveland), laureate of the Residence at the Cité internationale des Arts in Paris is gearing up to release his forthcoming, EP, Golem, via Kalahari Oyster Cult. After a maiden incursion in 2020, Luxembourg’s boldest club explorer will drop the four-track EP on September 15, including a remix from fellow KOC affiliate, Junes.
The new form of partnership between the Cité internationale des arts, the Ministry of Culture and Fonds culturel national also makes it possible to offer in 2021 a unique residency format where Cleveland will benefit from support tailored to his project within the multidisciplinary, international and intergenerational community of artists in residence at the Cité internationale des arts in Paris.
The jury, made up of Vincent Gonzalvez and François Tiger (Cité internationale des arts, Paris) Jeff Weber (resident artist in 2020), Christian Mosar (frEsch asbl) and Florence Martin (United Instruments of Lucilin) was delighted with the high quality of the proposed files and decided to allocate the residence to Cleveland. The relevance of the Cleveland project and the need for the Parisian cultural and institutional environment seemed particularly favorable for the development of this project.
A Brussels-based producer, born in Luxembourg to an Italian family, Cleveland has been a staple element of high-profile labels such as John Talabot’s Hivern Discs, the Californian ESP Institute, and now Kalahari Oyster Cult. The jury is convinced that this residency will give Cleveland the opportunity to establish new links with French professionals in the field and will be an important and influential step in an already international career.
Promotion is one of the central pillars of the support Kultur l lx provides for Luxembourg artists. We are therefore proud and happy to highlight things that have been well received by the media in different countries.
Greg Lamy racked up some excellent coverage in the French and Belgian press, where his new album, Observe the Silence was very well received. In France’s Jazz News No. 89, for example, Benoît Merlin praised the “impressionist composer”, who “is sparing with his words and tries to draw breath, slowing the tempo to play with silences, those notes that are anything but mute”. The crowning glory came from prestigious French magazine Telerama, where Louis-Julien Nicolaou gave the album the highest possible rating, saying that listening to it brought to mind the “ebbs and flows of emotion and desire that we are made up of and that only artists have the courage to bring to the surface and give shape to”.
In Belgium, a double-page spread in the Le Soir newspaper – the result of Jean-Claude Vantroyen’s interview with the artist – concluded with the words: “this album contains a sort of continuous groove, fluidity, flow of clarity, and need that fills the listener with excitement and happiness”.
Reis Demuth Wiltgen received good coverage in Citizenjazz, where Gilles Gaujarengues highlighted the trio’s unique style: “Here, as on their previous albums, as well as obvious elements of the great traditions of their genre, there are also traces of rock and pop. The influence of EST is clear, for one thing”.
They also enjoyed a decent amount of radio play, particularly on France’s TSF Jazz station and on France Musique, where Alex Dutilh’s Open Jazz programme marked the album’s release by playing the track Diary of an Unfettered Mind as the show-opener.
It should be noted that Michel Meis 4tet feat Théo Ceccaldi, were guests on Open Jazz in June 2021, following the release of their album KABOOM on 28 May 2021.