We’ve had Rock al Parque and Salsa al Parque, and this week sees the return of Jazz al Parque to Bogota. This year the festival takes place between Wednesday 10 – Sunday 14 of September in a variety of locations, including Universidad de los Andes and the Cuban Jazz Cafe. The main festival lineup takes places on Saturday and Sunday (13th & 14th) in Parque el Country (Calle 127C #11D), and features a range of live performers from all over the world, representing all styles of jazz. It promises to be a wonderful celebration of the art of jazz.
The earlier days of the festival feature smaller concerts from some featured bands in various auditoriums and cafes around the city of Bogota, and offer the chance for the jazz aficionado to take in some excellent live music in a more intimate setting. For me, jazz is a genre than works best in small, intimate venues, so Thursday’s show at the Cuban Jazz Cafe by Redil Cuarteto and Los Petit Fellas promises to a great evening.
The main event moves on to the eponymous park, and this is when the real ‘festival’ gets going: with live acts onstage from midday to 9pm, the show features 16 live jazz acts, and the best part is…it’s totally free! The princely sum of 0.00 pesos for all the live jazz you could desire! Highlights include live performances from Big Band Bogota, Cassandra Wilson, Curupira, Quantum and, best of all (I think…), David Murray feat. MACY GRAY! I didn’t even know she was still touring! Back on topic, the weather in Bogota is a little wet and drizzly at the moment, so I’d recommend packing a raincoat (however, being Bogota, it could change in a heartbeat, so bring some sun block for the possibility of blue skies as well).
All in all, it promises to be a great week for jazz in Bogota, and proves the existing commitment of the powers-that-be to showcasing less commercially viable forms of music in the nation’s capital. Kudos!