Copenhagen Jazz Festival 2018 completes its anniversary line-up with more than 1300 concerts


The 40th edition of Copenhagen Jazz Festival sets off in less than a month with a jam-packed line-up of exhilarating and diverse concerts. The 10 days offer everything from free shows in the afternoon to a star-studded evening schedule. The complete line-up has never been this varied a melting pot of genres, continents and generations.

The year is 2018, and this means that Copenhagen Jazz Festival and the city of Copenhagen have been in a relationship for 40 years. That calls for an extraordinary celebration.

The largest of this kind takes place in the stunning greenery in Kongens Have (literally: The King’s Garden) – the oldest park in Copenhagen, founded by the Danish royal family more than 400 years ago. Kongens Have is the biggest venue at Copenhagen Jazz Festival measured in both square meters and attendance, and our usual two days of free concerts have been expanded to a fully-fledged celebration across nine days with a diverse line-up of gratis concerts and organic craft beer from Svaneke Brewery – the perfect entry point to jazzy evenings with both local as well as international highlights on the city streets, in the clubs, cafés and concert halls, and at the open-air night venues.

Speaking of highlights, this year’s international headliners cover a lot of creative ground – from jazzy hip hop with The Roots to British guitar-virtuoso Jeff Beck to Brazilian renditions of classic hits from David Bowie by Seu Jorge and beyond. World music is represented as well, with performances by Rokie Traoré, Mulatu Astatke, Hermeto Pascoal and many others. 2018 also sees a return from one of the very first performers at Copenhagen Jazz Festival 1979, when legend Pharoah Sanders plays two sold-out shows in Brorsons Kirke.

Jazzhus Montmartre was the most happening place back when Sanders visited the first Copenhagen Jazz Festival. Today, there’s been a decentralisation and diversification of venues. 2017 meant a goodbye to the much-lauded Jazzhouse and a welcome to ALICE – an entirely new venue created by the joint forces behind former venues Global and Jazzhouse. Venues such as La Fontaine, JazzCup, Jazzhus Montmartre, Huset, 5e and KoncertKirken alongside organizers like Cowbell, ILK, Barefoot, Fringe Jazz and Jazz Club Loco continue their tradition of hosting jazz year round, and at Copenhagen Jazz Festival 2018 they are as busy as ever.

Among the latest additions to the programme you will find the award-winning Scandi-British trio Phronesis and Danish songwriter ML Buch in Brorsons Kirke, as well an extensive avantgarde line-up for Loco Nights headlined by Peter Evans – Pulverize the Sound, Gard Nilssen Acoustic Unity, Emi Makabe/ Thomas Morgan and more.

And let’s not forget this year’s special themes: 21st Century Jazz in Skuespilhusets foyer with Universal Indians with Joe McPhee, Sonja Labianca, Danielle Dahl and Maluba Orchestra as well as Jazz Remixed in Dansk Designmuseum, traveling through North Africa, Brazil and the folk music of Jan Johansson – on acid! Lastly, we are very excited to include the latest addition to Copenhagen’s already sprawling waterfront, BLOX, as a new venue. Here the audience can look forward to experiencing hard-hitting Danish acts SVIN, Boujeloud and Collider alongside the Secret Love DJs.

All in all, there is no shortage of activities, both indoor and outside, during Copenhagen Jazz Festival 2018. We, the organizers and the 120 official venues all look forward to greeting audiences old and new at this very special anniversary edition of Copenhagen Jazz Festival. See the full line-up right here at Jazz.dk

Photo by Peter Gannushkin