The European Jazz Conference 2019 in Novara will have two high-profile keynote speakers that will give to participants visionary and fresh perspectives on the role of culture and the arts in today’s communities, linked to the main theme of the Conference, “Feed Your Soul”: Chinese composer and multi-instrumentalist Du Yun and Cuban contemporary artist Tania Bruguera.
The keynote speech by Du Yun will take place in the morning of Friday, September 13th, following the opening ceremony of the Conference. Du Yun, born and raised in Shanghai, China, currently based in New York, is a composer, multi-instrumentalists, performance artist, curator, working at the intersection of orchestral, opera, chamber music, theatre, cabaret, pop music, oral tradition, visual arts, electronics and noise. Hailed by the New York Times as a leading figure in China’s new generation of composers and often cited as a key activist in New York’s “new movement in new music,” she was selected by the National Public Radio (US) as 100 composers under 40. With her very impressive and original work over different disciplines and styles, Du Yun is the perfect speaker to give to participants her insights on the ways in which music and art can “Feed your Soul”.
On the morning of Saturday, September 14th, Tania Bruguera will deliver the second keynote speech of the Conference. For over 25 years, Tania Bruguera has created socially-engaged performances and installations that examine the nature of political power structures and their effect on the lives of its constituency. Her research focuses on ways in which art can be applied to everyday political life; on the transformation of social affect into political effectiveness. She participated in the Documenta 11 exhibition and established the Arte de Conducta (Behavior Art) programme at Instituto Superior de Arte in Havana. Her work has been shown in the 2015 Venice Biennale, at Tate Modern, London, Guggenheim and MoMA, New York, among others. In her speech she will present some of the principles that guides her artistic research and talk about the ways in which art, by “feeding your soul”, can become a beacon of social and political activism.
In addition to the keynote speeches, the European Jazz Conference in Novara will see a very interesting set of panels and debates further exploring the theme of the Conference and its links to the work of professionals of the music sector. A Plenary Debate also on the morning of Saturday 14 September will explore new and innovative ways of programming regardless of music style definitions and with a global outlook. Panelists will be Johan Gijsen (Le Guess Who? festival, NL), Rainbow Roberts (Vancouver International Jazz Festival/Jazz Festivals Canada, CA), Louis Rastig (A L’ARME! festival, DE) and Reiner Michalke (Monheim Trienniale, DE).Parallel discussion groups will take place in the afternoon of Friday 13 September covering a broad range of topics: the value and actual effectiveness of showcases, with Nina Torske (Vestnorsk Jazzsenter/Nutshell, NO), Harun Izer (Istanbul Jazz Festival/Vitrin, TR), Tiphanie Moreau (Association Jazzé Croisé /Jazz Migration, FR) and Susanna von Canon (ICP management, NL); potentials of the use of virtual reality in music, with Ulrich Schrauth (VRHAM! Virtual Reality & Arts Festival, DE); funding possibilities for international projects beyond Creative Europe, with Maïa Sert (On the Move, BE); Brexit and other possible challenges for mobility of artists, with Ros Rigby (Jazz Promotion Network, UK); Article 13/17 and the new European copyright regulations, with Federico Montesanto (MiA – Musica Independente Associata/Pirames International, IT) and new publications and studies linked to jazz research, with Nicholas Gebhardt (Birmingham City University, UK).