Perpetuum Jazzile – An a cappella choir that has grown into a worldwide phenomenon

After last year's 30th celebration of its first appearance on the stage, the Slovenian vocal group Perpetuum Jazzile embarked upon new virtuoso performances with a series of three concerts – Vocal Xtravaganzza 2014 – held at Cankarjev Dom (CD), in which, in addition to Slovene and world music hits, the audience was presented a programme of new works, including several of the group’s own songs.

Photo: Daniel Novakovič/STA

The group are back in CD after last year's spectacle in the Stožice arena. "We anxiously await returning to the Gallus Hall stage, where visitors will more than ever be a part of our concert programme,” said Boštjan Usenik, member and manager of the group before the already sold-out first concert. In his words, visitors co-created the programme by helping to select songs on their Facebook page.

Hits were given new twists – the audience’s feet were literally heated up by the new adaptation of Footloose; those who feel closer to Joni Mitchell’s deep emotions could fully partake of them in the choir’s first vocal orchestration. A piece by the excellent group Papir had its premiere in swing style.

Perpetuum Jazzile, in addition to exceptional rhythm and complex harmonies – despite the group’s size – are distinguished by incredibly harmonious and precise sound, impressive also on a global scale, which reaches very special dimensions in the acoustics of Gallus Hall.
Under the artistic mentorship of Peder Karlsson, a vocalist, arranger, composer, and founding member of The Real Group, the group has further refined its musical expression and successfully performed on concert stages in the U.S., Canada, the UK, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Serbia, Macedonia, Croatia, the Czech Republic, and Sweden.

After Ljubljana, Perpetuum Jazzile will be appearing at the 10th edition of the Festival of Contemporary Art ‘Bela Noč’ (White Night) on the night of 4 October in Skopje. During this jubilee festival edition, the city will be transformed into an artistic stage where numerous squares, galleries, and museums will serve to celebrate art.

The Festival, which unites artists from the world of theatre, music, literature, the visual arts, and children's creativity, will offer a rich programme also this year. Visitors will be able to choose from among ten stages, each dedicated to a different musical genre. According to the Macedonian news agency MIA, the hours of operation of many cultural institutions will be extended.
After Skopje, the group are travelling to Hungary to give a concert in Budapest, and to Germany, where they plan to have eight concerts, according to information from Perpetuum Jazzile website.

The Perpetuum Jazzile group today has more than 50 members from all over Slovenia. They perform popular and jazz music exclusively with vocals, occasionally accompanied by piano and other instruments.

The beginnings of the group date back to 1983, when the Gaudeamus Association was established in Ljubljana. The group’s founder and the first Artistic Director was Marko Tiran. In 2001 his work was taken over by TomaŽ Kozlevčar; in 2011 Peder Karlsson became the Artistic Director of Perpetuum Jazzile.