Live Performance Service - International Music Presentations

Keith Jarrett made history in 1991 when he became the first jazz musician to perform at the Vienna state Opera. It was the main event during the very first Vienna Jazz Festival and was immortalised on Jarrett’s CD "The Vienna Concert".

A native of Allentown, Pennsylvania, Keith Jarrett studied at the Berklee school of Music in Boston before heading to New York City where he became the pianist in a group led by drummer Art Blakey. He later replaced Chick Corea in Miles Davis’s band and soon after embarked on what has become a very successful solo career. In addition to his solo performances, he has been, since the early 1980s, a member of a trio which includes drummer jack DeJohnette and bassist Gary Peacock. In addition to jazz, Jarrett is also an accomplished classical musician.

A milestone event at Vienna State Opera
In 1986, Keith Jarrett performed in one of Vienna’s prime classical music venues, the Musikverein, which is known around the globe for its unique acoustics. It would, however, still be another half a decade before he would take to the stage of the city’s other main classical venue, the Vienna State Opera.

Keith Jarrett

Keith Jarrett Concert Poster

Keith JarrettKeith Jarrett ECM CD-Cover

It would take a year of negotiations and diplomacy by Fritz Thom and the Live Performance Team to convince officials that jazz also had a place on the stage at the Vienna State Opera. The hard work paid off: Keith Jarrett performed a sold-out solo concert during the first Vienna Jazz Festival in 1991. It remains a vivid memory for anyone who was lucky enough to have been at this milestone event. He is said to consider it one of his best jazz solo performances.

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