3rd International Jewish Music Competition in Amsterdam

October 11-14, 2012 in a new location!
The Third International Jewish Music Competition will be held at the
Compagnie theater in the heart of Amsterdam’s old city center and on
the edge of the city’s Jewish Cultural Quarter This competition is for individual musicians, ensembles and bands specializing in performing Jewish music and whose goal is an international career performing this repertoire.
Competition registration: open until July 1
Announcement of selected contestants: August 1
Ticket sales: starts in September
Festival opening concert: Wednesday October 10
Preliminary competition rounds: Thursday October 11 & Friday October
Finale: Saturday October 13
Winners’ Concert: Sunday October 14
More information & registration: www.ijmf.org
Location: Compagnietheater, Kloveniersburgwal 50, Amsterdam
IJMF Newsletter May 2012

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Built in 1793, the Compagnietheater
classicist building is beautifully located on one of Amsterdam’s
famous canals, and major tourist attractions such as the Jewish
Historical Museum, the recently restored Portuguese Synagogue and Dam
Square are all within walking distance. The interior of the building
was refashioned in 1995 to house a state-of-the-art theater. The
large hall has a capacity of nearly 500, perfect for our competition.
The two smaller halls, each seating around 100, and the foyer will be
a great setting for our open podium, workshops and cultural
marketplace. With its gezellig (Dutch for ‘cozy’) cafÉ, the theater
is a popular home for major Dutch cultural festivals including the
Holland Festival, the Canal Festival and the International
Documentary Film Festival.

Registration is in full gear
Even before we announced registration, many ensembles wrote for
information about this year’s competition. An unprecedented number of
groups have already filled out the application form. Director Ken
Gould is enthusiastic: “In the past, many ensembles have waited till
the last minute. In 2010 literally half of the ensembles registered
in the last week. If the same pattern occurs this year, we’ll get
well over a hundred applications.” This year’s application deadline
is set for July 1st. The selection committee will then review the
submitted recordings and on August 1st they will announce the 24
ensembles to be invited to participate in the competition from
October 11-14 in Amsterdam. What motivates these groups to come to
Amsterdam? In 2010, bookings, recording contracts, agency
representation, and prize money worth over €70,000 were awarded by
festival directors and recording labels from around the world. Below
are some of the presenters that scouted the last competition, either
in person or online. We expect even more festivals and record labels
to be represented this coming October.

Jury close-up: Dubi Lenz
As in past editions of the competition, this year’s jury will be
comprised of prominent figures from the music and recording industry,
including Hankus Netsky, Gerard Edery, and Dubi Lenz. For fifteen
years, Dubi was head of the music department of the Israel Defense
Forces Radio (“Galei Zahal”) and for over three decades he has
presented HaKol Zorem, a popular world music and jazz radio show. His
in-depth knowledge of world music makes him a valuable addition to
the 2012 IJMF jury. Since 1998 he has served as artistic director of
the Hearing the World Festival in Tel Aviv and he is former president
of the ‘Forum Worldwide Music Festivals in Europe’. Dubi Lenz is also
artistic director of the Red Sea Jazz Festival, which takes place
this year from July 30th through August 2nd and again and for its
winter edition, at the end of January, 2013.

What ever happened to…?
If you haven’t looked at our Facebook page –
lately, you might have missed our “alumni updates”. Every few days,
we post news from one of the 48 ensembles that have participated in
past IJMF Competitions. As of the end of this year, that number will
climb to 72! Here’s one: Danish ensemble Mames Babegenush won the
Audience Prize in 2010. What’s happened since? They toured Germany
twice including a performance at the FÜrth Klezmer Festival, thereby
redeeming one of their prize bookings from the competition. They also
toured Austria and Belgium and during IJMF 2011 they toured Holland,
including performing in a live national broadcast from Amsterdam’s
world famous Concertgebouw. The group also recently recorded and
produced Full Moons & Pay Days. For this new album, they struck out
on a new path, working together with assorted European DJs, producers
and singers. A few weeks ago, band leader Lukas Rande wrote us: “High
up on our list is revisiting the Netherlands, we love playing there
and have just started to work with a great Dutch agency for booking
as well as distribution. So, we hope to come back soon!” And we’re
happy to announce that their wish will come true: we’ve invited them
to give the kickoff concert in the monumental Portuguese Synagogue on
the eve of the next competition, Wednesday October 10th.