Danish Music Awards Jazz

DMA Jazz - the annual celebration of the best of Danish jazz

Danish Music Awards Jazz 2021

Danish jazz was celebrated with a spectacular show of live music, awards, glitter, and glamour. Hosted at Bremen Theater in Copenhagen and live on TV and Danish radio. Composer and actress Jeanett Albeck was the host of the evening, leading the audience and viewers at home through a festive night filled with musical surprises and awards. This year she was supported by her video sidekick, drummer Kresten Osgood, who occasionally would pop up on screen to help the host dissect the concept of jazz through humorous small videos. Seven DMA’s, two special prizes, and two scholarships were presented to the absolute best of the year that went in Danish jazz.

“Sublime music that makes the world a better place”
It was a proud Bjørn Heebøll who received the main prize of the show, Jazz Release of the Year, on behalf of Makiko Hirabayashi, for her group Weavers’ self-titled debut album. An album with what the jury referred to as “sublime music that makes the world a better place”. In the category Jazz Composer of the Year, it was Jesper Thorn who went home with the award for his album ‘Boy’ which, by the jury, was described as “love in the shape of an album”.

The prize for the Vocal Jazz Release of the Year went to the up-and-coming singer and composer Astrid Engberg for her debut album ‘Tulpa’ due to its “innovative and powerful jazz-hypnosis” according to the jury. For the Experimental Album of the Year, the award went to the triple nominee of the night; Aar og Dag and their album Tifold af Fri Form og Fælles Motiv, for their successful attempt to navigate with “playfulness in the antithesis of hierarchy and to create humble and superior optimism”.

The debutant prize for New Jazz Name of the Year went to the music collective Maraton and their self-titled debut album, which the jury called “a manipulated sound of the entire world” and “a breakthrough in danish jazz”

Visuality and fold-yourself animations
The newly founded awards, Cross Aesthetical Release of the Year, which awarded a jazz musician working with multiple artistic expressions in the release, went to All Too Human ‘Because You’re Worth It’ for “a danceable and complex universe of music, visuality and fold-yourself animations”.

The winners of the Children’s Jazz Award 2021 were found earlier today at a special Children’s DMA Jazz show, that took place at BETA in Amager. Here it was De Onde who, after a convincing concert, got the most points from the children’s jury and was awarded the title.


Astrid Engberg won the award for Vocal Jazz release of the year for the album Tulpa.
Photo: Malthe Ivarsson

Special prizes and scholarships
For the second year in a row, together with the William Demant Foundation, two jazz scholarships were awarded to respectively The Musician of the Year and the Orchestra of the Year. The title for musician of the year was given to drummer Jeppe Gram who was awarded the title and 20.000 DKK for his open-minded, genre-open, and curious music. The recipient of the title Orchestra of the Year and 30.000 DKK went to Simon Toldam Trio for their constant work of exploring the possibilities in the acoustic piano trio.

The JazzDanmark Prize for Concert of the Year went to the collective Meutiviti and their concert series Impro Fauna where jazz music walks down new sustainable roads, leaving behind a trail of newly planted trees. 
Fiery Jazz Soul of 2021 and the winner of the P8 Jazz Award went to Niels Overgaard for his decade-long work with his blog Jazznyt and his work as an initiator to the Moor Jazz Festival in Herning.

And the winners are

Jazz Release of the Year
Makiko Hirabayashi - Weavers (Enja Records)

Jazz Composer of the Year
Jesper Thorn - Boy (Moveable Records) 

Vocal Jazz Release of the Year
Astrid Engberg - Tulpa (Creak Inc. Records) 

Experimental Release of the Year
Aar og Dag - Tifold af Fri Form og Fælles Motiv (Aar og Dag)

Cross Aesthetical Release of the Year,
All Too Human - Because You're Worth It (ILK Music)

New Jazz Name of the Year
Maraton - Maraton (Barefoot Records)

Children's Jazz Award 2021
De Onde

The JazzDanmark Prize - Concert of the Year
Meutiviti for Impro Fauna

The P8 Jazz Award - Fiery Jazz Soul of 2021
Niels Overgaard

Jazz Scholarship 2021 - Musician of the Year
Jeppe Gram

Jazz Scholarship 2021 - Orhcestra of the Year
Simon Toldam Trio

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