Skip to content
still from Big Ben: Ben Webster in Europe (Johan van der Keuken, NL 1967)
still from Big Ben: Ben Webster in Europe (Johan van der Keuken, NL 1967)

Films, talks & events

All That Jazz

9 September — 2 October 2022

still from Round Midnight (Bertrand Tavernier, FR/US 1986)
still from Round Midnight (Bertrand Tavernier, FR/US 1986)

Jazz greats like Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Dexter Gordon and Ornette Coleman have all made music for a film at one time or another. As musicians, they have contributed to works by idiosyncratic directors such as Louis Malle, Bertrand Tavernier and David Cronenberg.

All That Jazz: a scintillating programme on jazz and film featuring classics, live performances and a focus on exceptional avant-garde and activist filmmakers with a passion for jazz. From Miles Davis to Vincent de Boer, from Sun Ra to Ornette Coleman.

still from The Connection (Shirley Clarke, US 1961)
still from The Connection (Shirley Clarke, US 1961)
still from Ascenseur pour l'echafaud (Louis Malle, FR 1958)
still from Ascenseur pour l'echafaud (Louis Malle, FR 1958)

In All That Jazz, we get to see and hear what jazz musicians have meant to both early and contemporary films, whether as composers or performers of a live score. Examples include films such as Ascenseur pour l’échafaud (Louis Malle, 1958), David Cronenberg’s Naked Lunch (1991) or Whiplash (2014) by Damien Chazelle.

In addition to the screening of fifteen ‘jazz films’ in which we hear jazz as exciting, atypical film music, All That Jazz presents live performances of new jazz scores for silent films. Attention is also devoted to jazz musicians’ involvement in short films by avant-garde filmmakers such as Johan van der Keuken, Vincent de Boer, Len Lye and Lambart & McLaren.

still from Begone Dull Care (Evelyn Lambart, Norman McLaren, CA 1949)
still from Begone Dull Care (Evelyn Lambart, Norman McLaren, CA 1949)
Ornette Coleman and Shirley Clarke during the filming of Ornette: Made in America (Shirley Clarke, US 1985)
Ornette Coleman and Shirley Clarke during the filming of Ornette: Made in America (Shirley Clarke, US 1985)

Another exceptional element is the programming surrounding New York avant-garde filmmaker Shirley Clarke, who from the 1960s made films strongly influenced by jazz, such as The Connection (1961). We also devote special attention to Larry Clark, one of the leading lights of the L.A. Rebellion – a film movement made up of young Black filmmakers aiming to create a New Black Cinema. Larry Clark may well have made the ultimate jazz film in Passing Through (1977).

still from Passing Through (Larry Clark, US 1977)
still from Passing Through (Larry Clark, US 1977)
still from The Stroke (Vincent de Boer, NL 2020)
still from The Stroke (Vincent de Boer, NL 2020)

The opening night is on Friday 9 September, when London-based jazz formation Ill Considered will perform with the multimedia show Liminal Spaces: a sultry, punky jazz improvisation that will create a new audio-visual jazz artwork, live. The following weeks will bring specials including a focus on abstract animated film as a visual counterpart to free jazz improvisation (including work by the likes of Len Lye and Vincent de Boer) and the psychedelic sci-fi of the Afrofuturist cult film Space Is the Place (1975, featuring Sun Ra in the lead role).

still from Space is The Place (John Coney, US 1974)
still from Space is The Place (John Coney, US 1974)
poster All That Jazz

Films, talks & events

still from Jazz on a Summer's Day (Bert Stern, US 1958) (Dinah Washington)
still from Jazz on a Summer's Day (Bert Stern, US 1958)

Share your love for film and become a member of the Eye Society.