The 15th edition of the festival brings headliners including Avishai Cohen, Jamie Cullum, Steve Hackett, Gregory Porter and Paul Personne to the Opéra Garnier Monte-Carlo, all for the love of jazz.
This festival is the Principality’s contribution to the glittering history of jazz: over the years it has showcased a roll-call of established stars and also provided a springboard for emerging talents. The event was the brainchild of Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer’s former artistic director, Jean-René Palacio, who passed away this year and left us this last programme. The story of the festival begins in 2002 with “les Mardis du Jazz” – Jazz Tuesdays – a series of monthly jazz concerts hosted by the Cabaret du Casino. It has continued to grow over the years with more venues coming onboard, including the Sporting, the Bar Américain, Moods, and most importantly, the Opéra Garnier Monte-Carlo. The festival was officially launched in 2006, and has since featured big names including Chick Corea, Sonny Rollins, Marcus Miller, Herbie Hancock, Diana Krall, Dee Dee Bridgewater,
Melody Gardot and Al Jarreau, alongside talented newcomers whose careers have since taken off, such as Esperanza Spalding, Raoul Midon, Anne Paceo and trumpet player Ibrahim Maalouf. The 2021 season of the jazz event features seven concerts, opening with Israeli bassist Avishai Cohen and his trio (23 November), followed by British pianist Jamie Cullum (24 November), the excitable firebrand who now belongs to the large family of jazz vocalists: “My music is basically that of a jazz lover! he has said.
A unique experience with universal scope
Genesis guitarist Steve Hackett will mesmerise the audience on 25 November with his poetic soundscapes in which harmony gains the edge over technical brilliance, while Californian baritone Gregory Porter distils songs from his latest record, All rise, to sing the truth inherent in his roots, the music of black people and the blues, conveying the message that love can help us rise above our condition (29 November). In his debut appearance at the festival, pianist Chucho Valdés, effortlessly blends a variety of musical styles with Cuban rhythms, introducing us to the talented artist Yilian Cañizares (30 November). Guitarist Paul Personne returns with a new album, Funambule, a collection of hot electric numbers composed and recorded in Normandy and Brussels. The 15th edition closes with a concert by David Hallyday, the son of two legendary French singers. Musically influenced by his Buddhist practice, he will perform songs from his latest record, Imagine un Monde, in which he expresses his desire to see further and higher, beyond fear and resignation (4 December). As ever, the Monte Carlo Jazz Festival presents an inspirational programme of jazz-infused sounds.
2311 TO 0312
Opéra Garnier Monte-Carlo