Every year for the last decade and a half, elite groups of hot swing musicians have come from Europe to tour the U.S. The exact lineups change, but they all feature masters of the "gypsy jazz" — or jazz manouche — style pioneered by guitarist Django Reinhardt.
Traveling the world with their unique, high-energy performances, the Django Festival AllStars pay tribute to the style of Django Reinhardt (1910-1953), one of the greatest guitar players of all time and the first European jazz musician to make major contributions to the development of the guitar genre. His driving, swinging style became known as “hot jazz” and it continues to grow in popularity globally. The Django AllStars honor the best energetic traditions of this French Gypsy Jazz, but add their own creative interpretations, arrangements, and original compositions, all with the stunning virtuosity typical of these highly regarded players.
Led for many years by legendary guitarist Dorado Schmitt, the AllStars currently feature Dorado's son, Samson Schmitt, lead guitar; Ludovic Beier, accordion and accordina; Pierre Blanchard, violin; Doudou Cuillerier, rhythm guitar and vocals; Antonio Licusati, bass. They have performed at the Newport Jazz Festival, Birdland, The SFJazz Center, and The Kennedy Center.
"The best jazz show in town" – The Wall Street Journal
“Sensational…Standout Performance…Hardest swinging band at the Fest!!!” – Downbeat Magazine