Looking for the good music in Heidelberg? Hear Jazz. There are some locations in Heidelberg an nearby Mannheim, worth to look for. In Heidelberg, the Jazzclub Heidelberg offers 10 to 12 concerts a year with an ambitious programme, which comprises high class bands from Germany and selected bands from abroad and the best of the regional jazz scene. Their scope ranges from modern mainstream to experimental and avantgarde. The Jazzclub’s concert location is the DAI (Deutsch-Amerikanisches Institut) in downtwon Heidelberg. Another location, with mostly local bands and sessions is “Jazzhaus Heidelberg”, which can be found in old town Heidelberg. There is some turmoil around the Jazzhaus these days and it will have to close soon, probably. Please check their website. One of the famous jazz locations in Heidelberg was Cave 54, where international jazz stars of the 1950ies and 1960ies used to jam, but these golden times are gone and nowadays, there’s only one weekly session left, which is held on tuesday evenings. Some other concerts are spread on several locations over the city.
If you chose to look for jazz outside of Heidelberg, there are some really nice spots not far away. In nearby Mannheim, the IG-Jazz offers a regular programme at “Klapsmühl am Rathaus”. A little, nice location with concerts of the locals jazz students but you can hear the best german jazz bands there, too (also: mainstream to experimental and avantgarde). At Alte Feuerwache Mannheim, the programme offers often some “bigger names”, with an international twist. The “Neuer Deutscher Jazzpreis” (New German Jazz Award) is held there each year. This price is quite unique, as the audience elects from three bands, which were chosen from roundabout 200 applications by a jury and a curator, the winner.
At Bergstrasse, in Heppenheim, the Forum Kultur offers an ambitius programme, which could be characterised as modern mainstream, also worth a little trip from Heidelberg.
There are some jazz festivals in and around Heidelberg, too. The biggest is “Enjoy Jazz“, which is held in fall. It runs over 6 weeks and offers roundabout 60 to 70 concerts on several locations of the Metropolregion Rhein-Neckar (the region around the cities of Heidelberg, Mannheim and Ludwigshafen). In summer “Palatia Jazz” offers concert – most of them open air – in several cities of the nearby Palatinate (a region, belonging to the neigbouring state of Rheinland-Pfalz), worth a look. It offers a mostly international programme and its USP is the offer of regional wine and food before the concerts. Another festival nearby is “Jazz and Joy” in Worms. A little bit more far away, but definitely worth the trave is the “Just Music Festival” in Wiesbaden, which is held in January: a fine selection of avantgarde, modern and sometimes free jazz. Recommended.
This is just a short sample of the most interesting jazz venues and festivals of Heidelberg and its surroundings. You can find all interesting jazz concerts in the region at www.metropoljazz.de, which offers a comprehensive overview of all concerts worth listening. As the Heidelberg-Blogger is also the webmaster of www.jazzpages.com and the Jazzblogger, please feel free to drop a line, to get some expert’s advice 😉