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Going with the flow - experiences and contacts in focus


Life after Jazzahead – is there any? For the remainder of the year, Jazz Finland International follows the bands and delegates aiming to the international markets. The series starts off with the instrumental trio VIRTA, who performed at Jazzahead in 2017, both as part of Finnish Night showcases and the Clubnight at Papp. This year the band took the stage as part of the Clubnight programme.

VIRTA has widely been acclaimed by the media especially after releasing their second album Hurmos in 2016. The band combines electronics, effects and jazz in their music. At their album release tour the audience got the chance to enjoy the visual images with lights, colours and graphics.

This year the band did not take part in the Jazzahead fair but they still feel that the band interests the audience and the delegates, since the atmosphere at Clubnight was warm and the venue was crowded.

VIRTA assures that one can never gain too much experience in performing at the international events. There is a tight schedule, creating pressure and excitement at the showcases, but the band's success has built confidence on their concept adapting well in different circumstances. Their musical strength, professionalism and adaptability of live productions have not gone unnoticed by others in the field either:

"Both the audience and the professionals have been impressed by how VIRTA sounds and looks at the stage. These experiences will surely become of great use to us when we approach the Central-Europe markets more extensively”, guitarist Heikki Selamo comments the benefits of taking part in the Jazzahead.

In addition to Jazzahead, VIRTA represented Finland at the Scope club festival’s Nordic Jazz Comets showcase in Berlin last year. The band thinks that meeting key figures of the field has been quite natural at these kind of events but especially at the NJC, where meeting delegates was made easy by arranging organized discussions. Participating in a massive fair like Jazzahead means more systematic preparations.

“These kind of events are important because even though it is possible to deal with international contacts through internet, working together and knowing each other is a lot easier after you have met face to face”, Selamo states.

VIRTA's upcoming festival shows in Finland:
8.6. Sideways, Helsinki
6.7. Kosmos Festival 2018, Ristiina
28.7. Raahen Rantajatsit - Jazz on the Beach

In August VIRTA performs in Austria and in the autumn the band concentrates on composing new material and making their third album.


Written by Sheri Toivomäki

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