Jazz Finland Residency artist Melissa Aldana (CL/US) will arrive in Finland in October

Valtteri Pokela

The leading voice of her generation in jazz, tenor saxophonist Melissa Aldana, will arrive in Finland in October as part of the Jazz Finland Residency program. Melissa Aldana will perform e.g. as a soloist with UMO Helsinki Jazz Orchestra. Aldana will perform with UMO in Jyväskylä (9.10.), Lahti (10.10.), and Helsinki (11.10.).

The collaboration between Melissa Aldana and UMO started in summer 2023 at Pori Jazz Festival, where Jim McNeely’s arrangements of Aldana’s compositions were played with the power of the big band. For the October concert series, the repertoire will be expanded with a couple of new arrangements. The conductor is Ed Partyka.

Grammy-nominated tenor saxophonist and composer Melissa Aldana (b. 1988) hailing from Chile and living in the United States, is considered one of the leading jazz voices of her generation. She won the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition as the first female and as the first South American instrumentalist in 2013. Her quartet’s first album Visions was released with rave reviews in 2019, and the second album 12 Stars received an equally glorious reception in 2022. The first reviews of the album Echoes of the Inner Prophet, released in spring 2024, have also been graceful. DownBeat nominated her as the Rising Star Artist of the Year in 2022. Melissa Aldana is known for her smooth harmonies and compositions that respect post-bop traditions. She has already established her name among the jazz musicians such as John Scofield, Joe Lovano, Roy Hargrove, Branford Marsalis and the SFJAZZ Collective.

The rest of Melissa Aldana’s concert schedule during her visit to Finland will be announced soon.

Jazz Finland Residency is an international jazz residency program in Helsinki initiated by the Finnish Jazz Federation, the Jazz Music Department of the Sibelius Academy at the University of the Arts Helsinki, UMO Helsinki Jazz Orchestra, and the Musicians’ Union. The Residence, coordinated and managed by the Finnish Jazz Federation, annually invites two international artist guests to Finland. The residency program includes holding master classes at Sibelius Academy and performing together with UMO. The residence’s partners are also Music Finland, Finnish Jazz Musicians association and the HIAP Helsinki International Artist Program.


Photo: Eduardo Pavez Goye