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.

Kultur | lx, Taller de Músics and the Accion Cultural Española joined forces to implement a joint residency programme dedicated to Luxembourgish and Catalan jazz artists. In order to favour artistic encounters between both scenes and foster the international career development of jazz artists, two Luxembourg-based musicians and two Barcelona-based musicians will gather from November 18th to 21st in Barcelona to share their artistic visions. The result of these days dedicated to research and creation will be presented at Jamboree (Barcelona) and neimënster (Luxembourg), respectively on November 21st and 26th.

As this programme seeks to encourage the transmission between emerging and experienced artists, it will involve two established artists: Marc Demuth, a doublebass player and composer from Luxembourg, and Irene Reig, a saxophone player and composer based in Barcelona. They will coordinate the residency and share their experiences with two emerging artists selected by a jury.

The jury, composed by Marc Demuth, Irene Reig, Stéphane Wasila (neimënster) and Josep Mestres (Jamboree), decided to select the Luxembourgish vibist, composer and producer Arthur Clees, as well as the Barcelona-based drummer and composer Andreu Giró Espasa.

About the laureates

About Arthur Clees

Arthur Vinzent Clees is a young vibist, composer and producer from Luxembourg. He grew up in the small town of Esch-sur-Alzette and began his musical studies by taking cello. He soon decided to switch instruments and started finding interest in percussive instruments. After several years of studying classical percussion and taking multiple theory classes, he started to find his way into Jazz. Through playing drums and, eventually, by picking up the vibraphone as a main instrument, he started exploring the endless facets of contemporary improvised music. In 2019, he was a laureate of the Bourse Michelle and won the first prize during the drummer days in Luxembourg in 2020. After finishing high school in 2021, he started his bachelors in Jazz Composing in Dresden, where he currently studies.

Over the years Arthur was involved in many different band projects, both as a sideman and as a bandleader. With the band Anima he won the first prize of the Hans & Eugenia Jütting Stiftung in 2022. Arthur is currently active as a performer, composer and producer in both modern improvised music as well as contemporary classical music. Recent projects include a live album of an improvised set with Jan Jelinek (Faitiche & Terres Rouges), the release of debut albums with both Anima (Xjazz!) and Jambal (self released), as well as a brand-new duo project with vocalist Kateryna Kravchenko. In addition to his studies in composition and vibraphone, Arthur consistently kept working on his passion for electronic music and music production. Not only has he been making beats and mixes for other artists, including Culture the Kid, but he will also release his debut album stay, temporary home as a songwriter/producer on the Berlin based Label Macro end of 2023.

Andreu Giró Espasa

Andreu Giró is a passionate and dedicated musician who has devoted a significant portion of his life to studying and performing music. He commenced his musical education at the Can Ponsic Municipal School of Music, l’ARC Foundation, during the 2006-2007 academic year and continued his studies until the 2015-2016 academic year. During his tenure at the school, Andreu displayed a keen interest in the piano, dedicating 7 years to mastering this instrument and participating in various chamber music ensembles at the school. From 2010 to 2016, he concurrently pursued drum studies under the tutelage of teacher Iñaki de la Linde, broadening his repertoire and honing his skills with this instrument.

Andreu continued his education at the Taller de Músics School of Music in Barcelona. Between 2016 and 2019, he studied drums, piano, and ensemble (combo) under the guidance of different teachers delving into the techniques and expressions of jazz.  Andreu’s unwavering dedication to music propelled him to commence his higher music studies at Taller de Músics ESEM in September 2019, where he continued to refine his drumming interpretation in jazz under the mentorship of teachers Ramón Ángel Rey, Toni Pagès, and Jordi Gardeñas. Andreu Giró successfully completed his higher Jazz studies and presented his graduation concert at Jamboree in Barcelona in June 2023.

About the mentors

Marc Demuth

Over the past several years, Luxembourg bassist Marc Demuth has emerged as a strong voice in the European jazz scene. In 2004 he was selected to be part of the European Jazz Orchestra on their tour through Europe and Brazil, under the conduction of the Portuguese leader and composer Pedro Moreira. A long-term usical partnership with Portuguese singer Sofia Ribeiro resulted in numerous appearances at venues and festivals all over Europe and the release of their Duo recording “Dança da Solidão” in 2006. Since 1998 has played in the Reis Demuth Wiltgen Trio, who released their fourth CD SLY for the Italian label Cam Jazz. Saxophonist Joshua Redman met the band at a festival in France in 2014 and fell in love with their music from the moment he heard them. Joshua joined the trio as a featured guest on many occasions and tours. He also was part of a project featuring the music of REIS/DEMUTH/WILTGEN arranged for the Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg by multiple Grammy Award winning composer and conductor Vince Mendoza.

As an accomplished and passionate jazz educator, Marc shares his experience and insights with the next generation of creative musicians at the Echternach Music School in Luxembourg. He started his musical studies at the Luxembourg conservatory, and pursued them at the Royal Conservatory of Brussels with Jean-Louis Rassinfosse and Michel Hetzigeorgiou. He got his master from the Royal Conservatory of The Hague under Hein van de Geyn.

In 1996, at the young age of 18, he won a scholarship for studying electric bass at the famous Berklee College of Music, while participating at their annual workshop in Perugia, Italy.

Irene Reig

Irene is a saxophone player and composer based in Barcelona. She got interested in jazz music at an early age and she has been involved in music since then. She has been living in different cities such as Amsterdam and Philadelphia where she developed her career and recorded her firsts albums: Views and The Bop Collective. She is currently playing with her own trio and many other ensembles. She is also part of the collective and label The Changes.

Kultur | lx – Arts Council Luxembourg, Taller de Músics and Acción Cultural Española aim to provide spaces for musical creation and to promote the international careers of emerging jazz and improvised music artists. The program includes a period of gestation during an artistic residency and the presentation of the show in Barcelona and Luxemburg during autumn 2023.

The main premise of this call is to select one emerging musician from Luxembourg and one emerging musician from Barcelona to create a quartet of experienced and emerging musicians for a residency programme that will take place from November 18th to 21st, 2023.

For four days, two musicians from Luxembourg and two musicians from Barcelona will meet and share their compositions, cultures and musical visions. The project will be co-led by Marc Demuth, established and talented bass player and composer from Luxemburg, and Irene Reig, saxophonist and composer representing one of the standard-bearers of the new generation of Catalan jazz musicians.

After an initial concert to mark the end of the residency at Barcelona’s Club Jamboree, the quartet will set down roots in neimënster (Luxembourg) for a second concert.

This residency project is supported by Taller de Músics, Kultur | lx – Arts Council Luxembourg, neimënster, Jamboree in collaboration with Fabra I Coats – Fabrica de Creació. This project is part of Acciones para Músicos Noveles, a co-production between Taller de Músics and Acción Cultural Española, AC/E.

About Taller de Músics

Taller de Músics is much more than a pioneering school in the dissemination of jazz, flamenco and modern popular music. In its more than 40 years of history, it has built up its own system of education, creation, production and dissemination of music. In the field of education, it is a unique and complete project of artistic accompaniment that consists of creativity and spontaneity accompanying their students on their paths from the classroom to stage.

Actions for New Musicians is a collaborative project between Taller de Músics and Acción Cultural Española (AC/E). Since 2019 it has been providing spaces for musical creation and promoting the international careers of emerging artists from the Taller de Músics community. The actions it carries out include periods of gestation in artistic residencies with national and international figures, the promotion of shows, co-productions with festivals, digital publishing and attendance at seminars and festivals.

Conditions for participation

The call is open to emerging jazz musicians from Barcelona and Luxembourg. Applicants from Luxembourg must fit the following criteria:

The applications should be submitted by August 31th, 2023 at 11:59 pm.

The names of the selected musicians will be published on mid-september 2023.

Material and financial terms

The selected participant will receive a fee for each concert.

Kultur | lx will cover all the expenses related to the residency of the Luxembourgish participants :

Taller de Músics will cover the expenses related to the production costs of the residency.

Jury and criteria

A committee formed by the two band leaders (Irene Reig and Marc Demuth) and the two venues bookers (Jamboree and at neimënster) will evaluate the submitted applications.The jury will select one emerging musician from Luxembourg, and one emerging musician from Barcelona.

The jury’s decision is final.

Required documents

Kultur | lx and the Institut d’Estudis Balearics shaped an exchange programme between the showcase festivals FIRA B! for the Balearic Islands and Shuffle on the Luxembourgish side. Through this exchange, jazz artists from both territories get the opportunity to perform in those showcase festivals attended by countless professionals, and therefore to develop their presence in new territories.

On September 29th, Dock in Absolute will perform and present their project at Teatre Xesc Forteza, Palma de Majorca, in the framework of FIRA B!. Shuffle, organised by neimënster in partnership with Kultur | lx and taking place on November 25th and 26th, will welcome an artist from the Balearic Islands.

About Dock in Absolute

Dock in Absolute is a stellar trio from Luxembourg composed of Jean-Philippe Koch on piano, David Kintziger on bass and Victor Kraus on drums, young musicians who breathed new life into the music scene. With a shared love of music, they combine different styles of progressive jazz, classical and rock, playing the pianist’s own compositions and co-created their unique jazz style in 2012.  Its music is sparkling, varying, forceful, pressing, rich in twists and turns in mood. An endless variety of melodic cells, often with a hypnotic pattern, alternating against a flamboyant, bright sonic background with unfaltering dynamics, never a half-way approach from this trio.

Dock in Absolute was created by its pianist in 2012 and has been touring in the past years playing at many international festivals around the world. The band released its first album in 2017 under the Label CAM JAZZ and the second one in 2019. A third one is planned for the end of 2022. Due to its strong international presence, the group was named ‘Export artist of the year’ by music:LX in 2017 and 2019. The trio has also been named N.1 Discovery Artist by the magazine Jazznews and its latest album belongs to the JAZZit 100 Greatest Jazz Albums of the year 2019.


Dock in Absolute’s next performances

1.10.2022: Jazz au Chellah, Rabat (Morocco)
6.10.2022: La Nef, Namur (Belgium)
4.12.2022: Darius Jazz club, Lons-le-Sonnier (France)

After a three-year (physical) hiatus due to the global pandemic, Primavera Sound’s Barcelona version is set to take place live-and-in-person, from June 2-12.  First starting in 2001, the festival has grown to become one of the largest and most prestigious festivals in the world, let alone Spain and Barcelona. Throughout the event, the state of the music business is debated with the best-known experts in the field, showcasing a number of newcomer bands and also renowned artists from any style or genre, this year including the likes of Tame Impala, Gorillaz, The Strokes, Beck, Tyler The Creator, Little Simz, and hundreds more.

Having been described as one of the most striking new voices from the European underground music scene, Luxembourg’s very own audio-visual artist, Cucina Povera, is gearing up to make her Primavera debut. After studying music at the Conservatoire de Luxembourg, Cucina Povera spent a few years making her mark abroad in Glasgow, also performing at festivals like Rewire and Sonica, and has now returned to live in Luxembourg definitively since early 2020.

Named after the Italian culinary concept which emphasises the use of a few simple ingredients, Cucina Povera conjures gorgeous, otherworldly songs about nourishment and precarity from layered vocals and electronics. Live, her music unfolds beautifully, as beguiling melodies emerge from harmonic drones and looped phrases.

Cucina Povera will join the Primavera event of Barcelona-based DJ, label owner and producer, John Talabot, whose record label Hivern Discs has established itself as one of the most influential labels of the underground Barcelona electronic scene. Catch Cucina Povera Monday, June 6th at Laut as part of Primavera Sound!

Cucina Povera at Primavera Sound
Monday 6 june – 22:15 at Laut, Barcelona

More information HERE.

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