Konfrontationen 2019 - Welcome


Konfrontationen 2019 - Festival for free and improvised music

40th edition

The Jazzgalerie Nickelsdorf invites you to the 40th edition of the Konfrontationen with a program that reflects the last four decades – while also keeping focus on contemporary ways of playing – with 20 concerts and a soundart exhibition.

From July 25th to 28th, this year's edition presents ~60~ musicians whose origins vary strongly in weltgegend and style. There will be old friends who played at the first festival in 1980, like the saxophonist Peter Brötzmann, who is going to perform solo, and young friends, like the Austrian ensemble P:Y:G and the German-Italian-French quartet Die Hochstapler.

In the program you find names as melodious as William Parker, New York bassist and founder of the Vision Festival; Irène Schweizer, Swiss pianist, doyenne of European improvised music and forerunner of feminist musical practice; Hamid Drake, exemplary drummer from Chicago; as well as the Tiger Trio with Nicole Mitchell, Myra Melford and Joëlle Léandre, who, side-by-side with Irène Schweizer, have been some of the finest trailblazers of free music in Europe and the United States, regardless of gender.

This year's edition will bring many Austrian musicians on stage: the above mentioned P:Y:G as well as Oskar Aichinger's EKG Ensemble, a group that is working with texts from poets of the Wiener Gruppe like Gerhard Rühm and H. C. Artmann. Here we are coming to a full circle again, because both authors gave a reading at the first Konfrontationen festival in 1980.

The variety of this year's program is broadened by formations like the group posing the Malfattian question Does Sound Have A Shadow?; the Beirut-Berlin Ensemble AB Sextett around the trumpeter Mazen Kerbaj; the Swiss-German duos Florian Stoffner/Paul Lovens and Joke Lanz/Ute Wassermann; as well as the Austro-Slovenian collaboration Zsamm (Patrick Wurzwallner / Maja Osojnik) and Austro-Serbian collaboration of Noid/Marina Džukljev. Noid, aka Arnold Haberl, is also the mastermind of the soundart exhibition Something To Play.

The only large ensemble, Freedom and Unity, is an homage to Clifford Thornton (1936-1983), an Afro-American musician, composer, and activist who was very important for the musical development of Hans Falb, the organizer of the Konfrontationen, as well as for Joe McPhee, the head of the Ensemble.

But not only is the Konfrontationen celebrating 40 years. The very popular punk band The Ex merged into the free music scenes of the Netherlands and Europe, and nowadays draws even more inspiration from the musics of the Congo and Ethiopia than from the grey mud in the canals of Amsterdam. They will perform loosely in improvisations as well as in their well-known collective formation and are representing – together with the hip-hop-noise-band Anguish – the pop-musical side of free music.

Similar to the music program of the festival, the book Cloud Arrangers from the Slovenian photographer Žiga Koritnik presents the visual side of the developments of the last years and decades. Koritnik, whose photographic work captures unforgettable moments of great atmosphere, is going to present his book in person at the festival.

Deutsche Version


Jazzgalerie Nickelsdorf | Untere Hauptstraße 13, A-2425 Nickelsdorf | +43 (0)2146 2359