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For many young artists, entering the music business is riddled with obstacles. Besides talent and luck, it needs an enormous amount of energy, perseverance, persistence, and time, to get the proverbial foot in the door. The New Generation #JazzLab wants to make this step a bit easier for motivated young talents.

The Idea

A competition between a master class and a sponsorship award for young jazz musicians who are on the threshold of a professional career. After the successful first edition in 2021 and 139 bands taking part in the competition in 2023, we are again looking forward to the “New Generation #JazzLab” presented by Jaguar in 2024.

Whoever is invited to the Festival da Jazz is a winner already. The days in St. Moritz will put the focus on enjoying music. The two winning acts will be supported by renowned mentors. In rehearsal venues of the festival, the young talents can work, practice and arrange their music intensively for five days. The perfect finale will be a concert at the legendary Dracula Club.

And because the music business is indeed a business, the bands will also get support in this field on their way to a professional career. Every festival is a kind of organic network where curious and open-minded musicians can benefit. What is important for festivals when booking an act? When does it pay to be persistent and when can it be counterproductive? How should an artist or band present themselves online and offline? From sound technician, to band managers, festival organizers to external managers from the music business – there is a lot of knowledge gathered that can be tapped into.

Free entrance to festival concerts


with international agencies and managers


and prize money of CHF 5,000.–


Professional recordings (incl. full concert)


at the legendary Dracula Club


incl. room and board with internationally renowned and experienced mentors and hosts at the Festival da Jazz

5-Day masterclass

Two selected bands will be invited to the Festival da Jazz in St. Moritz in summer 2024 and can benefit from an attractive sponsorship and support package:

The Prize

Mentors 2024

At the centre of the New Generation #JazzLab is the collaboration of the winning acts with various jazz greats. These “mentors” are internationally renowned professionals with extensive teaching background who support the young talents in many ways. The Festival da Jazz deliberately chooses artists who distinguish themselves by their multifaceted work and curiosity:

Robin McKelle

vocals, USA/France

Robin McKelle who studied classical and jazz piano, french horn, music theater and opera in her early years, is one of a few singers who straddle the line between classic rhythm and blues and traditional jazz with ease. Often compared to Ella Fitzgerald, Robin’s early influences came from Aretha Franklin, Gladys Knight, Donny Hathaway and Nina Simone. McKelle has performed with many artists from the worlds of jazz, rock and pop, including Bobby McFerrin, Herbie Hancock, Pee Wee Ellis, Fred Wesley, Gregory Porter, Michael McDonald, Lee Fields, Henry Butler, Terence Blanchard, Wayne Shorter, BeBe Winans, and as soloist with the Boston Pops Orchestra.

Aaron Goldberg

piano, USA


“For over 20 years, pianist Aaron Goldberg has set himself apart as one of the most scintillating performers in jazz,” hails JazzTimes. Goldberg is widely heralded as one of the art form’s most compelling pianists, both leading his own trio and collaborating with many of the Jazz titans. Simultaneously swinging and embracing risk, his stylistically fluid, singular voice reveals that jazz is a tradition of innovation. He performed in bands led by a cross-generational array of icons including Betty Carter, Al Foster, Ron Carter, Freddie Hubbard, Wynton Marsalis, Joshua Redman, Mark Turner, Christian McBride, Tom Harrell, Cecile McLorin Salvant, Joe Lovano, Peter Bernstein, Ravi Coltrane, Carl Allen, Madeleine Peyroux, Kurt Rosenwinkel and Guillermo Klein.

Reuben Rogers

bass, USA

Imbued with both groove and spirit from birth, Reuben Rogers combined the calypso and reggae rhythms of his native Virgin Islands with the gospel sounds of the church and the freedom and improvisation of jazz to create the unique chemistry that would make him one of the most distinctive and in-demand bassists in modern jazz. Rogers’ versatile mastery of both the acoustic and electric bass has led to opportunities on stages around the world alongside some of the music’s most renowned artists, including Charles Lloyd, Wynton Marsalis, Joshua Redman, Tomasz Stanko, Roy Hargrove, Marcus Roberts, Nicholas Payton, Mulgrew Miller, Jackie McLean and Dianne Reeves, among many

Gregory Hutchinson

drums, USA/Italy


Jazz Magazine describes him as “the drummer of his generation” and indeed, Gregory Hutchinson is one of the most highly respected musicians of our time. His mastery of timing and expression of rhythms is at the core of his personal style. He is a musician’s drummer, soundly rooted in the jazz tradition he is able to approach all styles of music with supreme accuracy and imagination, decorating compositions with his natural feel and mind blowing innovation. Over the past 30 years Greg has been providing outstanding drumming for Red Rodney, Betty Carter, Ray Brown, Dianne Reeves, Wynton Marsalis, John Scofield, Roy Hargrove, Branford Marsalis, Charles Lloyd, Diana Krall, Harry Connick Jr, Joshua Redman, Christian McBride, Maria Schneider and many, many more.

IMPORTANT: The winners will be invited to Festival da Jazz in the week from July 15 to 19, 2024. These dates have to be kept free! The jury’s decision will be announced in the last week of April. There will be no correspondence regarding the decision, the legal process is excluded.


And this is how it works: Interested bands can apply for the #JazzLab via this online form. Entry deadline is April 5, 2024. A jury of national and international experts will select two winning acts from all submissions.

Time is up

Erena Terakubo // Saxophonist & Composer, Japan

Peewee Windmüller // Editor-in-chief JAZZ’N’MORE magazine

Lee Ritenour // Grammy-Award Guitarist, Composer/Producer

Christian Jott Jenny // Singer & Founder Festival da Jazz

Carolina Müller-Möhl // Philanthrope & Investor

Roger Rüegger // New Generation #JazzLab

Robin McKelle // US Jazz-Singer

Melina Roshard // PR/Media Expert


The jury brings together different exponents from the world of jazz, and the music and promotion business. The Festival da Jazz makes a point of ensuring that the members are put together from a broad spectrum, featuring varied opinions:

Band of jazz students and/or jazz school graduates

Bands whose members are at the beginning of their careers and no older than 30 on average

National and international bands from the wide genre of jazz

General Application Terms

The competition for the New Generation #JazzLab is aimed at:

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