This major musical event of Eastern Paris has adapted to the current health crisis: with around twenty concerts scheduled, the festival should be able to welcome 6,000 jazz enthusiasts in 2020, compared to 30,000 in previous years.
The program of Jazz à la Villette, which will inevitably have a “very special resonance” at the start of the cultural season, will be concentrated on the first two weekends of September.
For Laurent Bayle, General Director of the Philharmonie de Paris, and Didier Fusillier, President of La Villette, the event co-produced by the two institutions “opens the new season of concerts and shows quite opportunely”.
“This festival will be like no other. Firstly, because we had to reformat it entirely to cope with health-related constraints, with the support of the artists, our partners and all the staff. […] Secondly, because we are impatient to bring our different venues back to life and to see the artists on stage again, after some months that have been particularly complicated for the entire music industry.”
The Grande Halle de la Villette and the Philharmonie will be the two major stages of this event. The first one will welcome the Mancunian band GoGo Penguin (September 5th), the “reinterpretation of John Coltrane’s album Africa/Brass” by the Dal Sasso Big Band and its guests David El Malek, Sophie Alour, and Irving Acao (September 11th), and the Malian artist Fatoumata Diawara (September 13th) — the first concert of the festival that is already sold out.
The Pierre Boulez hall of the Philharmonie will feature the musicians of “Piano Forte”, Éric Legnini, Baptiste Trotignon, Bohan Z & Pierre de Bethmann (September 5th), and the Cuban pianist Roberto Fonseca with “Solo & Friends” (September 12th). Concerts are also scheduled until September 13th in other rooms of the institution, the Studio and the concert hall of Cité de la Musique. Good news: some seats are available from €15 and €13 in reduced rates — including people with disabilities, under-26s, and job seekers.
There will also be a dozen concerts planned as part of the festival’s “Périphérique” program, which will bring together several partner venues from September 4th-13th: the Atelier du Plateau (19th arrondissement), the Dynamo de Banlieues Bleues (Pantin), the Studio de l’Ermitage (20th arrondissement) and the Folie Villette Makerz, in the heart of the Parisian “cultural park”.
The festival was designed to respect the measures imposed by the covid-19 crisis: limitation of the number of tickets with one seat occupied out of two, compulsory mask from the beginning to the end of the concert, use of the venues limited to one performance per evening, and no intermissions and refreshment stands. The evolution of the situation between now and September may of course still affect the festival, its programming, and the number of spectators allowed to attend concerts.
Jazz à la Villette
September 4th-13th, 2020