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Europajazz Festival

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Europajazz Festival
Europa Jazz.jpg
the Europajazz logo
DatesNovember - May
Location(s)Sarthe (France)
Years active39 years
Founded byArmand Meignan - Jean-Marie Rivier

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The Europajazz Festival is a jazz festival which takes place in Sarthe and its adjacent departments every spring. The heart of the festival is situated in Le Mans.


Created in May 1980 under the name Le Mans Jazz Festival, renamed Europajazz Festival du Mans in 1985 and then Europajazz since 2000, this festival is one of the oldest in the hexagon. From its quite in-depth European option deliberately chosen against the flow of jazz tradition in the early eighties.[1], it has made a “signature” renowned all over Europe: 3000 spectators at the time of its creation, more than 40 000 in 2017. The Europajazz has "grown" and now organises more than 100 concerts a season, in 6 departments, 30 cities and 60 different stages.[2]

Its actions[edit]

Actions all along the year from October to May, including:

  • Soblues Festival: November / December
  • Europajazz au lycée: March
  • Rendez-vous du printemps: April
  • Régional Tour: March / April
  • Têtes Blanches Tour: April
  • Europajazz en balade: April
  • Europajazz Festival - Le Final: May

Claiming a rich and popular artistic diversity in every environment, the festival brings jazz from high school[3] to hospitals, from college to retirement homes, from remand centres to the greatest concert halls. The Europajazz multiplies partnerships with local companies and cultural structures and works towards the cooperation of innovative festivals at a European scale thanks to the AJC (Association Jazzé Croisé)[4] of which it is a founding member. The finale of the festival at L'Épau Abbey, actual “laboratory”, historical matrix of the festival, constitutes a land of experimentation favorable to the most unusual musical meetings. Since its creation, the Europajazz has always connected to the origins of jazz and has thus cultivated all its stylistic tendencies, notably by offering different thematic rendezvous all along the season: blues concerts, especially with the “Soblues” in November since 2011[5], and the “Nights” (branss bands, salsa, gipsy jazz, etc.)[6]


This festival has welcomed numerous renowned musicians such as:

  • Louis Sclavis
  • Médéric Collignon
  • David Murray
  • Enrico Rava
  • Christian Vander
  • Joelle Léandre
  • Daniel Mille
  • Henri Texier
  • François Corneloup
  • Willem Breuker
  • Eddy Louiss
  • Michel Portal
  • Bernard Lubat
  • Didier Lockwood
  • Archie Shepp
  • Didier Levallet
  • Elvin Jones
  • Dominique Pifarély
  • Joe McPhee
  • Jan Garbarek
  • Richard Galliano
  • Paco de Lucia
  • John McLaughlin
  • Daniel Humair
  • Andy Emler
  • Aldo Romano
  • Steve Lacy
  • Nina Simone
  • Joachim Kühn
  • Jean-François Jenny-Clark
  • Martial Solal
  • Dee Dee Bridgewater
  • Carla Bley
  • Marc Perrone
  • Keith Tippett
  • Hélène Labarrière
  • Erik Truffaz
  • Bojan Z
  • Brad Mehldau


  1. Dominique Queillé, "L'Europajazz élargit ses frontières", next.liberation.fr, 30 April 2001. read online
  2. Francis Marmande, "europajazz festival sans limites stylistiques ni départementales", lemonde.fr, 27 march 2017. read online
  3. Camille André, "Europajazz: la musique s'invite dans les collèges sarthois", francebleu.fr, 5 April 2017. read online
  4. AJC, "Presentation & history", ajc-jazz.eu. read online
  5. Ouest France "Carton plein pour un festival SoBlues de choix", ouest-france.fr, 21 November 2016 read online
  6. Ouest france, "Jazz, blues et nuits festives avec Europajazz", ouest-france.fr, 30 September 2016. read online

External links[edit]

official website

Others articles of the Topic Jazz : Vail Jazz Foundation, Linda Cable, Underneath a Harlem Moon

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