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JazzBez 2015

The15th JazzBez Polish-Ukrainian Jubilee Festival Is Finished!

This year the 15th JazzBez International Jazz Festival celebrated its anniversary (3 - 13 December 2015) gathering together 14 cultural centres of Ukraine and Poland. The jazz events, including concerts, jam sessions, gigs and all possible jazz impromptu actions were held in the Ukrainian cities of Lviv, Mostyska, Ivano-Frankivsk, Rivne, Lutsk, Ternopil, Kharkiv and Kramatorsk, as well as in the Polish cities of Nowica, Lublin, Przemysl, Bialystok, Warsaw and Wroclaw, the European Capital of Culture 2016.

ХV міжнародний джазовий фестиваль «Jazz Bez»

Jazz Bez 2015 Ali Perrets DuDu /RostyslavPavlyk /


Jazz Bez 2015 Bartosz-Pernal-Quartet  /Maryana Klochko /

JazzBez 2015 Logan-Richardson

jb15 5  Saagara-Oksana-Kljuchnko

JazzBez 2015 Tango Project  / Rostyslav Pavlyk /

JazzBez 2015 Tango Project  / Rostyslav Pavlyk /

JazzBez 2015  Vehemence Quartet / Rostyslav-Pavlyk /

One of the main goals of the Festival is its educational purpose. That’s why, this year the Levandivka,a commuter Lviv town, was involved in the jazz whirl. Note! On Monday! And the residents of the district (full house!) enjoyed jazz music, Hammond Organ, the Lviv School of Jazz & Modern Music and the Polish Bartosz Pernal Quartet performances; all in co & encore!

All in all, the 15th JazzBez has featured over 50 concerts and has gathered together over hundred jazz artists from the U.S., India, Greece, Turkey, Armenia, Germany, Austria, Portugal, Poland and Ukraine!

VideoReport /15th Jazz Bez/ 1st by Oleksander Frase-Frazenko

The Festival was launched in the city of Lviv with the performance of the Ali Perret's Du.Du. project, which has brought together experienced and talented musicians from Turkey, Greece, Armenia and the US. Their multifaceted musical expression is featured as anatolian jazz, based on arrangements of sincere, melancholy sounds of ancient Anatolia and contemporary multicultural rhythms of New York. The artists were united by a common idea to live in peace, regardless of nationalities or political opinions.


One of the brightest Polish bands became the Vehemence Quartet, represented by young and talented jazzmen, the Grand Prix winners of the 51st Jazz nad Odra Poland's most prestigious jazz contest (2015). Despite their young age, a mihty cast of jazz instrumentalists can be an exemplary illustration of a powerful contemporary Polish jazz scene. During the Festival the quartet has run the jazz marathon by seven cities of Ukraine and Poland, gathering jazz lovers in Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk, Lutsk, Ternopil, Kharkiv, Lublin and Wroclaw


VideoReport /15th JazzBez/, 2nd Day by Oleksander Frase-Frazenko


The second JazzBez day was started with the Bartosz Pernal Quartet, a known Polish band, specified by a truly unique sound based on the exceptional combination of Hammond organ (Kajetan Galas),  trombone (Bartosz Pernal ), alto saxophone (Marcin Ślusarczyk) and rhythm section (Grzegorz Masłowski). The musicians have managed to create their uniquely expressive and refined style of jazz.


One of the Festival’s highlights - Logan Richardson, a charismatic alto saxophonist, currently living in both New York City, and Paris. He is considered to be one of the most uncommon saxophonists of the new generation. That day he performed in collaboration with the Igor Osypov Quartet. The project is created by Igor Osypov, a forward-thinking Ukrainian guitarist, a native of Donetsk (ATO zone). The quartet was also represented by Jesus Vega (U.S.) on drums and Max Mucha (Poland) on double bass.


VideoReport /15th JazzBez/, 3rd Dayby Oleksander Frase-Frazenko


The star cast of the Polish participants was strengthed by Maciej Obara, a young but well-known Polish composer and alto saxophonist, a real discovery in Poland. He and his own project Maciej Obara Quartet presented the audience an unsurpassed concert held in one of the best Lviv concert halls. 


The same day the JazzBez audience had a chance to meet one more Polish quintet, the TANGO PROJEKT, created by the known Polish musicians, who over the years have been genuinely promoting tango and jazz. The project is recognisable thanks to its jazz arrangements of genius Argentine composer Astor Piazzolla works. The project involves Piotr Baron, the renowned Polish jazz saxophonist, a longtime friend  of the Jazz Bez Festival,  and WiesŁaw Prządka, a virtuoso bandoneon player.


VideoReport /15th JazzBez/, 4th Day by Oleksander Frase-Frazenko


The jazz music picture was enriched by Wacław Zimpel, one of the most recognisable Polish clarinetists on the global improvised music scene and his new Indo-Polish project Saagara (liter.sanskrit “ocean"). The project is a meeting of two music worlds. The first is the oldest musical form of India, Carnatic music. It relies on a very subtle rhythm\melody system. The second - represents the best European jazz traditions.

Immediately after his performance in Lviv, Wacław Zimpel went to the East of Ukraine and gave a solo charity concert in the liberated city of Kramatorsk!


The most desirable event for the lovers of free jazz and improvised music became the world premiere of MATEEN-BAUER-TOKAR-KUGEL expressive star quartet, which brought together the virtuosos of experimental music from the U.S., Germany and Ukraine. The real explosive improvisational fusion on the stage of the Lviv Philharmonic was presented by Sabir Mateen, a known saxophonist from Philadelphia who plays primarily in the avant-garde jazz idioms; Johannes Bauer,  a trombone virtuoso, in the 70th he and  his brother were the core of the East Germany jazz scene; Klaus Kugel, one of the most brightest and expressive contemporary jazz drummers of Central Europe and Mark Tokar, a known Lviv jazz bassist, a key figure in the Ukrainian jazz scene


VideoReport /15th JazzBez/ 5th Day by Oleksander Frase-Frazenko

A pleasant bonus of the JazzBez final day has occurred the project by the Lviv School of Jazz & Modern Music, where two dozen young jazz musicians showed their skills and masterfully played well-known jazz standards under the watchful guidance of Igor Hnydyn, a co-founder of the School.


Their performance was followed by the presentation of the Lemkivska Suite / Lemkian Suite, an ethno-jazz project by Anton Pyvovarov, a saxophonist and composer, arranger. He was born and grown up in Ukraine, studied in the US, and lives in Austria (since 2010). Ritual songs from Lemko region in jazz arrangements were masterfully performed by Laura Marti, a singer of Armenian origin; Kyiv pianist Natalia Lebedeva; a known drummer Igor Hnydyn and Igor Zakus, one of the best jazz bass guitarists in Ukraine.


The jubilee 15th JazzBez in Lviv (and later in the legendary town of Mostyska) came to its end to the accompaniment the Angela Gaber Projekt (Poland). An incredible Angela Gaber vocal and more than 15 involved instruments in combination with jazz, fusion and electronics presented a completely new sound of the well-known Ukrainian, Polish, Serbian and Gypsy songs!


Meanwhile, throughout the Festival the Kvartyra 35 art café hosted the One Minute Jazz Portrait project by Polish jazz photographer Sławek Przerwa. The project presented 99 black and white portraits of jazz artists, participants of the 51st Jazz Nad Odrą festival. By the way, this year the JazzBez has launched cooperation with that Poland's most prestigious jazz contest. The exhibition contains the portraits of jazzmen that have repeatedly performed at the JazzBez, including Joachim Menzel, Piotr Baron, Frank Parker, Zbigniew Namyslowski and many others.


Already for the fifteenth consecutive years, the JazzBez festival is engaged in the mission to bring together musicians from different countries, to show them our country, and to demonstrate the Ukrainian audience how mighty and colourful jazz music can be. Many musicians were the participants of previous festivals, and they know our city like the palm of the hand. Many of them were in Lviv for the first time. But all of them enjoyed Dzyga Art Centre delicious cuisine and expressed gratitude to the staff of George and Irena hotels.


Almost every evening jazz concerts in the Lviv Philharmonic Hall and Zankovetska Drama Theatre were followed by impromptu jam sessions in the Kvartyra 35 art café , or just talks about jazz and life in good  company and to the accompany of good Buchach cognac.


The 15th Jubilee JazzBez Festival organisers: Dzyga Art Association (Lviv, Ukraine), the Polish Institute in Kyiv (Kyiv, Ukraine), Indie Independent Cultural Centre (Kharkiv, Ukraine), Kharkiv Human RightsProtection Group (Kharkiv, Ukraine), Consulate General of Poland in Lviv, Consulate Generalof Poland in Lutsk, Centrum Kulturalne w Przemyślu (Przemysl, Poland), Centrum Kultury w Lublinie (Lublin, Poland), Warsztaty Kultury (Lublin, Poland), Jazzva Club ( Kyiv, Ukraine), Lutsk JazzClub (Lutsk, Ukraine), Jam Jazz Club (Rivne, Ukraine), Koza Art Association (Ternopil, Ukraine), Shynok Art Club (Ternopil, Ukraine), Vytoky NGO (Ivano-Frankivsk, Ukraine), Transkultura Foundation (Ukraine-Poland), Institute for Contemporary Art (Lviv, Ukraine), Virmenska 35 NGO (Lviv, Ukraine), Dialogue Art Council (Lviv, Ukraine), Lviv City Council (Lviv, Ukrane), Ministry of Culture ofUkraine (Kyiv, Ukraine), Polish Tourist Organisation (Kyiv, Ukraine), Wroclaw2016 Europejska Stolica Kultury (Wroclaw, Poland), Embassy of Belgium inUkraine, Lviv Entrepreneurs Committee (Lviv, Ukraine), MariaZankovetska National Academic Ukrainian Drama Theatre (Lviv, Ukraine), Lviv Philharmonic (Lviv, Ukraine), Picasso Club (Lviv, Ukraine)


Accommodation hospitality: George Hotel , Irena Hotel

Exclusive media partners:LUX TRC, Radio “24”, TV Channel News "24", ZAXID.NET information portal

General sponsor: BUCHACH brand



Zbruc.eu - Julia Sosnovska: «People and jazz» (in Ukrainian)

Culture.pl - Aljona Vyshnycka «Jazz Bez – its about good music: ХV international jazz festival in Lviv» (in Ukrainian)


Відеощоденник XV JazzBez у Львові від Олександра Фразе-Фразенко


Rostyslav Pavlyk, Polina Pavlova
Julia Kafizova, Mariana Klochko, Oksana Kljuchenko


The Festival takes place within the Art of Tolerance campaign against xenophobia in Ukraine, supported by the SIDA Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency