Jazzfest Berlin

The festival 2018

From parallel musical universes to creative border crossings and collective visions – with its programme for 2018, the Jazzfest Berlin creates contrasts, seeks challenges and opens up spaces for encounters. It creates time capsules, travels into the future and looks into the past, demands utopias, promotes free spirits, wants to move, think, groove, dance.

For four days, roughly 200 musicians from around 15 countries in various formations will occupy the Haus der Berliner Festspiele. On 1 November, the ‘Haus of Jazz’ will celebrate its grand opening with ten acts and numerous German premieres on all levels of the Festspielhaus.

Nicole Mitchell and the Black Earth Ensemble open the evening on the big stage. But even before that, the interactive performance ‘FutureLeaks: A Place of Visions’ invites you to a utopian experience and the Berlin KIM Collective plays its Carte Blanche and creates the ‘Un(ter)Ort’ – a musical echo of what is happening above ground. Interludes on four stages open up musical parallel universes and the house will be transformed into a free space of movement. Everything concludes on the big stage with the final opening work of Rob Mazurek’s ‘Exploding Star International: Chicago-Berlin’.

Thematically, the Jazzfest Berlin moves between the polyphony of up-and-coming European artists and their dynamic spheres of activity; Chicago as an evolved place of creative exchange and collective interaction; and jazz between its Afro-American historiography – which tells of oppression and racism as well as of liberation and empowerment – and today’s creative cosmos, like that of Afro-Futurism in its manifold varieties.

Guitarist Mary Halvorson from New York appears as Artist in Residence in various formations, demonstrating her striking playing and her extraordinary impact. In addition, new cooperations and formats open up the festival to other arts and create new spaces of experience inside and outside the Festspielhaus with installations, neighbourhood concerts, exhibition visits and performances.

With my first edition as artistic director of the Jazzfest Berlin I would like to present a festival that looks to the future with a rich tradition and history. I want to use this important platform to provide a stage for great artists and innovative ideas, to bring them together, to create synergies and thus let new things emerge.

I look forward to many extraordinary experiences and exciting encounters!

Nadin Deventer
Artistic Director Jazzfest Berlin


Playlist for Jazzfest Berlin 2018

Jazzfest Berlin 2018

Flyer as pdf file

With the complete programme

Download here

Jazzfest Berlin

The Jazzfest artists’ archive

More than 5,100 artists and bands since 1964