Two days of jazz performances are coming soon to Val’s Place in Gialia, Paphos as the annual Paradise Jazz Festival holds its 22nd edition. Ten musical acts are part of this year’s programme highlighting the rich and colourful world of jazz. Classical standards, world music, fusion and contemporary jazz, experimental performances and modern dance will be presented as musicians and jazz lovers head to the scenic venue.
“We are awaiting you with great enthusiasm to present you with our renewed programme,” comment the organisers, “with multiple new and exciting additions, such as a modern dance performance and additional stage and other refreshing adjustments such as giving more space to young creators and new talents who have blown us away with their excellent and interesting productions to present.”
The first day of the festival, August 19, will kick off the festivities with the presentation of the album Colorful Emptiness by Vasilis Philippou at 9.30pm. The evening will continue with the duet Gaba Project which consists of Vasilis Vasiliou and Christina Polykarpou, two artists who focus on experimenting with new musical approaches. Milena Ugren Koulas will then present a modern dance performance inspired by Aristotle’s philosophy about happiness and accompanied by musician George Koulas.
The next act will return to jazz melodies as the Allusion Quartet performs higher jazzy tempos. Concluding day one, is possibly the highlight of the entire festival as organisers share – the Cypriot renowned vocalist of international repute, Alexia Vassiliou. The singer will revive some of her favourite classic American Jazz standards from her historic milestone album Alexia in a Jazz Mood including swing, gospel and blues tunes.
Moving into the second and final day of the festival, August 20, the Gaba Project will perform once more before a modern jazz quartet founded and based in Rotterdam takes over. The JAG quartet’s music highlights the jazz tradition with a modern twist and they will present their sound to Cypriot audiences.
Following their performance is a duo which also comes from the Netherlands. Luca Warmer and Nikos Charalambous, inspired by jazz, free improvisation and rock, experiment with looping, electronic effects and samples to present a unique show.
Further down the festival’s agenda is the second appearance of dancer and choreographer Milena Ugren Koulas, who will perform together with dancer Elena Gavriel, in an act titled Meeting Point. The two artists will be joined by musicians George Koulas and Marios Takoushis.
Finally, the festival will conclude with four musicians on stage as it welcomes the Odysseas Toumazou Trio feat M Charalambous. The trio will perform original pieces from all members of the band as well as new music. The defining improv and jazz qualities mingled with Mediterranean influences are what best characterise this fusion of sound. With ten acts, dozens of jazz musicians and a picturesque, tranquil venue, the 22nd Paradise Jazz Festival invites jazz lovers for a taste of some of the island’s best live jazz, once again in Paphos.
Paradise Jazz Festival
Annual jazz festival. August 19-20. Val’s Place, Gialia, Paphos. 9.30pm. €20. Tel: 96-511179, 96-713164. www.paradisejazzfestival.com