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Jazz Baltica is a jazz festival which, until 2011, was held each summer in Schloss Salzau (Salzau Palace) close to Kiel, Germany, and the coast of the Baltic Sea. In 2012 it was relocated to the Evers-Werft (shipyard) at the harbor of Niendorf, a Baltic Sea resort close to Lübeck.
It differs from most other festivals in its intimacy and the access that visitors have to the musicians. The festival has changed its focus to feature primarily musicians from Northern Germany, Scandinavia and the Baltic countries.
Since 2002, Jazz Baltica has been conducted as part of the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival. Until 2011 the festival's founder and musical director was Rainer Haarmann. In 2012, the Swedish trombone player, singer and composer Nils Landgren took over as artistic director of the festival. The festival takes place around the last weekend of June.
What makes this festival so unique is its intimate nature due to the relatively small concert venues, which limits the number of attendees to several thousand on any given day. This gives attendees unusually close-up access to the jazz artists.
The festival starts Friday afternoon and runs through Sunday night. It concentrates on music from bebop through to contemporary jazz with a smattering of world music.
Besides the concerts that require tickets, there are also free midday concerts by young local musicians and free concerts in the late evening.