Jazz Education in Portugal

Jazz in Portugal: another proof that no matter how bad or how good the political, economical, and cultural surroundings are, jazz thrives because of its own inbedded, ingrained, immanent powers.

The Hot Clube, yes it is spelled correctly 'clube', is probably one of the eldest pillars under jazz in Europe. Despite dictatorship, economical and financial crises, and now booming economic growth, jazz in Lisbon, in Porto and elsewhere in Portugal, is doing excellent.

The Hot Clube is both a school in the western part of Lisbon and a jazz club in the center.

Close to the Hot Clube School is the University Lusíada which has jazz department as well.

In the center Lisbon, in Benfica, close to the stadium of the famous football club, the ESML is located. This is a school for higher music education of Lisbon, which is part of the IPL, the Institute for Polytechnics of Lisbon. The ESML  has both a classical and and a jazz department at university level. Eexcellent jazz performance and jazz education studies are combined with high-level jazz research. 

It was an honor and a pleasure for me to teach at the ESML on 26th and 27th November 2018. On the Monday the 26th, I explained that jazz can be boxed in a succession of styles, each with their own conventions of performance. Jazz can also be seen as an musical artform with improvisation and swing at its core and an ongoing stream for influences from other genres: classical, pop and world music. If you look at jazz, not as a series of styles, but as an ongoing process, a whole world of opportunities is opened.

My points of view are not easy to grasp right away but I am pretty sure that the students at ESML had a great deel of understanding of it.

On Tuesday 27th, I worked with the master students, convincing them that a personal, professional website is mandatory in the digital age we are living in. Miguel,one of the students, found a way to secure his niche on the internet. I could convince him and the other students to translate there live presence on stage and in the classroom to a digital presence on a personal profssional website.

No doubt we will hear more about ESML students in the future!