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First Day at Jazz in the Park. Peace Begins in the Bustle Before the Festival

It is said that beginnings can be tough, but for us, the first day at Jazz in the Park went very smoothly.

At 12:30 PM, the Ethnographic Park buzzes with bustle; and not just any bustle, as this activity seems to unite all the people here. There’s a feeling that something important is about to happen, but it is also peaceful, familiar, giving you a sense of well-being. Part of the team is carrying benches, sweat trickling down their temples, while others are tightening the last screws at Hill Stage; among the last-minute technical details being sorted out, a little girl tries to reach a branch too high, hanging from which is a wild apple.

At first glance, the festival’s pulse is alert, arrhythmic: every step rushes in a different direction—one walks leisurely, looking for possible problems to fix, another hurries to the Wine Yard to finish stocking up. The bustle of people in the park transforms into energy, which ultimately shapes the beginning of the eleventh edition of Jazz in the Park.

At 2:00 PM, the festival gates officially open, welcoming the first participants armed with wide smiles and a sense of returning to a place where peace is sealed tightly. Among the first arrivals are also many dogs, sniffing the scents coming from the Food Court and enjoying, alongside their owners, the shade and peace of the Ethnographic Park.

Jazz Roots Grow – JazzQuarters Trio in Concert
4:15 PM brings a fresh concert where musical spheres like bebop and rhythms rooted in the progressive origins of neo-soul intertwine. JazzQuarters Trio greets the audience with an original repertoire, adapted in a personal manner, speaking from one old friend to another. This conglomerate of original sounds forms a symbiosis that defines the style of this band—the contrast represents convergence, as the band members affirm.

What is the Future of Music Education?
“Meetings on the Porch” is a way to organize sincere and committed discussions with experts, from whom we have much to learn. Therefore, the first “Meeting on the Porch” was a discussion moderated by Horia Ghibuțiu (journalist, Rock FM), between Romeo Cozma (pianist, professor at the “George Enescu” University of Arts in Iași) and Dima Belinski (pianist, professor at the “Gheorghe Dima” Music Academy in Cluj-Napoca). In this dialogue, both guests agreed that music is a profession requiring sustained effort, perseverance, and much dedication. They also helped us peek behind the curtains of music schools and their programs, where we learned that jazz is not a specialized subject in Romanian music schools.

How Would You Feel Talking to Your Favorite Band?
The second “Meeting on the Porch” featured Fun Lovin’ Criminals, who are among this year’s headliners, in a conversation with Alin Vaida, the festival’s director. Alin Vaida fulfilled his childhood dream of questioning the band members of Fun Lovin’ Criminals, who came from the UK to enchant us. The dialogue outlined the musical and personal journey of the band members, who, although individually evolving in different directions, are always brought back to square one by a common factor—passion for music.

Homemade Dolce far niente at Birra Moretti’s Italian Experience
How about learning to make pizza from an Italian chef? After a day full of concerts and activities, a corner is set up at Birra Moretti’s Italian Experience where we learn to make a pizza exactly to our taste, and then we get to work. We have the help of an Italian chef who shows us that if we put our soul into the food we cook, it will always taste like a pizza made with love, in the twilight, at Jazz in the Park.

Billy Cobham – Versatility and Inspiration
If you haven’t heard of Billy Cobham before, but attended his Friday concert at the Backyard Stage, you’ll certainly remember the feeling his music gave you for a long time. Energetic and dynamic, Billy Cobham established a dialogue between the fluidity of music and himself; his unique drumming technique highlights his creativity, which keeps his melodies fresh.

The Fun Lovin’ Criminals concert concludes the first day of Jazz in the Park. The exchange of energy between the audience and the band is felt throughout the concert, as people’s faces are lit up with smiles, or as they dance, embrace, and sing.

As we head towards the exit of the festival, we go to talk about everything under the sun and stars and to look at Saturn through the telescope set up on the porch. The peace that follows the first day of the festival settles over the Ethnographic Park, and we listen. We await the bustle of the next day.

Ilinca Humelnicu, voluntar Comunicare & PR. 

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