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Gent Jazz Festival starts fresh chapter

Belgium's international jazz festival continued under the guidance of Greenhouse Talent after its previous promoter went bust

By James Hanley on 18 Jul 2023

Gent Jazz Festival, Belgium

Gent Jazz Festival

image © Gent Jazz/Maarten Mellemans

Greenhouse Talent says Belgium’s Gent Jazz Festival enjoyed a “successful new start” in its first year under new ownership.

The Ghent-based promoter and booking agency stepped in to acquire the international jazz festival after previous organiser – the non-profit Jazz en Muziek – went backrupt at the end of 2022.

The latest edition, held in Bijloke, Ghent, from 5-15 July, pulled in around 40,000 visitors across 74 concerts, in line with last year’s record numbers.

Proximus reports that seven of the 10 festival days sold out, including two shows by composer Ludovico Einaudi, along with concerts by Norah Jones and Herbie Hancock.

Acts to have performed at Gent Jazz Festival down the years include Tony Bennett & Lady Gaga, Sting, Van Morrison, Tom Jones, Gregory Porter, Grace Jones and Jamie Cullum.

“Jazz is a genre in which many artists age with dignity. That also applies to Gent Jazz”

Speaking to Nieuwsblad, Greenhouse Talent owner Pascal Van De Velde says he does not intend to tinker with the festival format too much going forward.

“The formula is fine,” he says. “You don’t put your kitchen table in a different room every year, do you? No, we see it this way: jazz is a genre in which many artists age with dignity. That also applies to Gent Jazz.”

Details of next year’s edition will be announced in the coming months.

Founded in 2004, Greenhouse Talent is the largest independent concert organiser in the Benelux and organises 500 concerts in the region each year, having previously worked with artists including Elvis Costello, Justin Bieber, Elton John, Massive Attack, Clouseau and the Rolling Stones.


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