Mário Laginha

Loulé gears up for “great Portuguese jazz festival”

Loulé’s annual jazz festival is returning this week (July 29 – August 1), now under a new name and highlighting the talent of Portuguese jazz musicians.

Previously known as Loulé International Jazz Festival, the event has been renamed simply “Loulé Jazz”. Explains the event’s artistic director Mário Laginha, “it no longer makes sense to describe it as international in order for it to be a quality event”.

Furthermore, the travel restrictions imposed due to the Covid-19 pandemic have also spurred the decision to shine the spotlight on national jazz musicians from all over the country.

“Jazz has grown exponentially in Portugal, several schools have opened from the north to the south and there are many good teachers,” said Mário Laginha, also one of the country’s most reputed jazz musicians.

“We would like this jazz festival to become a great party, with Portuguese musicians inviting foreign musicians, which would be excellent and is already happening this year,” he added.

While Laginha admitted that it was difficult to decide on who to invite, the plan was to bring musicians who have released “new music”, such as contrabassist Bernardo Moreira and Pedro Moreira and his Sax Ensemble.

Other performers will include young pianist Miguel Meirinhos from Porto, the duo of Maria João and Carlos Bica, and a trio led by contrabassist Zé Eduardo.

The full line-up will be as follows: Trio Zé Eduardo and Trio João Frade with Jorge Pardo (July 29); Pedro Moreira Sax Ensemble ‘Two Maybe More’ and Quarteto Maria João and Carlos Bica (July 30); Trio Miguel Meirinhos and Eduardo Cardinho Quinteto (July 31); Sexteto Bernardo Moreira and Trio de Jazz de Loulé with Julian Argüelles (August 1).

There were also plans to organise several jam sessions after the concerts with young musicians, Laginha revealed, however, the idea will not be possible due to the ongoing Covid-19 restrictions.

Tickets cost €12.50 per person and can be purchased at the Cineteatro Louletano or online at www.bol.pt. Concerts will begin at 9pm at the Cerca do Convento do Espírito Santo.

[email protected]

Mário Laginha
Quarteto Maria João and Carlos Bica