European Jazz Network General Assembly: Bari, Italy, September 27-30, 2012
The contributors, in chronological order of performance, were: Fulco Ottervanger (Belgium); Kaja Draksler (Slovenia); Maria Faust (Denmark); Cecilia Persson (Sweden); Prieto Andrés Rojas (Spain); Istvan Grencso (Hungary); Jaak Sooäär (Estland); Mikko Hassinen (Finland); Didrik Ingvald (Norway); Selen Gulun (Turkey); Susana Santos Silva (Portugal); Urs Rollin (Switzerland); Elvis Stanic (Croatia); Laura McDonald (Scotland); Toni Kitanovsky (Macedonia); Dylan Rynhart (Ireland); Matthew Bourne (England); Martin Brunn (Czechia); Emile Parisien (France); Stefan Schultze (Germany); Bram Stadhouders (Netherlands); Dainius Pulauskas (Lituania); and Giancarlo Schiaffini (Italy).
The Beat of Instable Norms
Among the 23 contributors, there were, at least, five women. Or, articulated another way, there were only five women. It all depends on point of view. In the deep south of Puglia, financial resources are being spent to develop music life and music business. Sweden, in the high north, is setting out to develop new potentials via norm-critical approaches in musical activities of all kinds, and spending resources for the development of broader educational programs aimed at enabling young people to free themselves, in a productive way, from the fears and restrictions that commonly impede creativity.
This initiative not only concerns gender roles and stereotypes but also ways of interaction, attitudes when playing, recording, promoting music, stylistic routines and more. It has to prove if this kind of approach to practice(s) in music-making-for jazz and improvised music-can develop, and be transformed in the long run so that new potentials will emerge, opening up the musical playing field for the projections and identifications of future generations.
The crew of Music Development and Heritage Sweden, a governmental organization, has provided the initial incentive with zest-something that will also be sympathetic and promising for supranational cooperation. It will be a good starting point for Trondheim, Norway where next year's assembly will take place.
All Photos: Henning Bolte