Cuba’s Youth JoJazz Competition

By Helson Hernandez

From JoJazz 2010. Photo: Irina Echarry

HAVANA TIMES, October 7 — The National Center for Popular Music and the Cuban Institute of Music announced the fourteenth edition of JoJazz to be held in Havana between November 24 and 27.

“JoJazz” is the opportunity to hear the best and most brilliant of the young talents of this genre.  It is an international festival in which the artists perform to show all their potential while at the same time trying to obtain an award in this fierce competition.

On this occasion the decision was made to dedicate the event to the grand masters of Cuban jazz, therefore expectations are growing around the program to be offered, which will include concerts, jam sessions and workshops – in addition to the competitive side.

With the aim of raising the standards and requiring greater knowledge of jazz by the competitors, one of the requirements this year will be to execute three songs in the following order: Standard, Latin and Freestyle.  The categories in which the contestants will be competing as soloists are “minors” (16 to 20 years of age) and “young adults” (21 to 30), in addition to a group format with no limitation to the number of members.

In terms of composition, those who can participate are musicians between the ages of 16 and 30.  Each author must perform two of their own works — responding to the techniques and styles of the genre — for a minimum of three minutes, with no requirements regarding the conceptual format.

In this way, the island is extending an invitation to the world of young Jazz artists to join this great celebration in Havana, where the surprise of discovery will be awaiting there every day at the vibrant “JoJazz2011” festival.

Those composers and musicians interested in participating must register before November 7, 2011.  The most direct path to this is sending an email to the following address: [email protected]

(With information issued by the Organizing Committee)