The Jazz-Espa concert series, organised annually by Jazz Finland, featured altogether 17 topical, Finnish jazz acts. Due to the covid-19 pandemic, special measures took place to ensure that the event remained safe for both audiences and artists. Altogether 3.600 people enjoyed the concerts this year. Despite the occasional thunderstorms and showers, the weather treated the festival kindly, and no concert was subject to cancellation.
In addition to the health safety measures, this year's Jazz-Espa wanted to take a stand for safer event spaces. The "safe space" refers here to a positive experience at the event, which might be your workplace, performance stage, leisure activity as a member of the community or just an accidental event you run into. Safe space indicates that as an event organizer Jazz Finland does not tolerate violence, harassment, or hate speech, thereby creating a safe place for marginalized people. The policy can be read at https://www.jazzespa.fi/safer-spaces (opens a new website in a new window).
The bands can apply to perform at Jazz-Espa. In the fall of 2020 there were 72 applicants for this summer. Out of all the applicants/band leaders, 22 were assumed female (31 %), and 50 assumed male (69 %). The final line-up featured 7 female leaders (41 %) and 10 male leaders (59 %). Out of the total number of 76 musicians, 12 were women (16 %) and 64 men (84 %). The application form did not yet specify the gender (female, male, non-binary, other, n/a), but since 2021 Jazz Finland has collected this information too, to advance equal opportunities, as stated in our Equality Policy 2021–2023 (opens a document to a new window).
Give us feedback and help to make better events!
This year Jazz Finland is collecting feedback from the event participants (artists, audience, staff) to develop Jazz-Espa into a safe, accessible and functional event (https://link.webropol.com/s/jazzespa2021survey / opens an online form in a new window) and to collect data about jazz-event-goers experiences and preferences (https://link.webropol.com/s/jazzyleisot / opens an online form in a new window). You can respond to both in English, by August 31, 2021.
Jazz-Espa was produced by Jazz Finland, with financial assistance from the Finnish Music Foundation (MES) and the Helsinki Cultural Centre. Event partners include the Savoy Theatre, Restaurant Kappeli, Grand Rental Ltd., and the Pop & Jazz Conservatory.