Dniepopetrovsk: World Jazz at the Dnjepr 2002

Ukrainian FieldsIndustrial region DniepopetrovskKarl-Marx-BoulevardJazzmen Dniepopetrovsk, an industrial city south of the capital at the river Dnepr, is one of the largest cities of Ukraina, a center of the heavy industry.

As soon as we came nearer to the city by bus, the more silent we became. The industrial regions made us silent, industrial litter, undefinable industrial complexes, a hostile environment. The more astonishing the accurate center of the town with alleys along the Karl-Marx-Boulevard, with basketball competition and cheer leaders, drugstores and shopping malls.

This town always was a center of power, many soviet politicians came from here as well as the actual politicians, but also the contemporary artist Ilja Kabakov, to name a few.

Not for the fist time the festival World Jazz at the Dnjepr was organised, in the center of the city in the Maxim-Gorki-Theatre, and every evening the hall was packed.

The program consisted of foreign ensembles like the Bill Evans Quintett, ukrainian-international ensembles like the quartett Haslam, Valentine, Solyanik, Shilin or just ukrainian ensembles as well as russian bands.

I was suprised that the audience was open for all styles of Jazz, Mainstream like the very famous ensemble Erstaunlich war für mich, daß das Publikum allen Darbietungen offen war; Mainstream-Jazz wie das im Igor Brill and the New Generation, was accepted and cherished as well as the folk-jazz-rrio Ornament from Moscow, ferocious applause for the Bill-Evans-Quintett, which had to give encores for more than 40 minutes.

A patient audience, which tolerated the bad sound and many technical problems to listen attentively to the concerts.

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Heinz-Erich Gödecke and posters of the festival George Haslam, Andrew ValentineBill Evans after the gig
Bill Evans after the gig