Danish Music Awards Jazz

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

November 12th 2020, Danish jazz was celebrated with an over-the-top live show filled with music, awards, and festive hosting at Bremen Theater in Copenhagen. This year's host Jeanett Albeck guided the audience through a night of musical performances and celebration as eight awards and two scholarships were awarded to the very best musicians and orchestras from the recent jazz year.

Heavyweights and debutants among the winners
The 13-person Maluba Orchestra, led by heavyweights Marilyn Mazur, Fredrik Lundin, and Kasper Bai, won the main prize Jazz Album of the Year, which was described by the jury as an album with "great compositional ambitions and a comprehensive take on jazz". Vocal Jazz Album of the Year was awarded to Sinne Eeg & the Danish Radio Big Band, who were praised for a top-professional performance, where the music "flows smoothly, seamlessly" through the album We've Just Begun.

The award for New Name of the Year went to the young saxophonist Nikola Bankov, who with the album Bright Future was predicted a bright future. The album was called an inexhaustible, all-consuming force that immediately makes both brain and heart surrender. In the newly category, Experiment of the Year, Maria Faust Sacrum Facere was awarded for the genre-breaking album ORGAN. The album was praised by the jury for its dramatic and melancholy roar of collective sound and for containing "jazz's inherent urge to reach out and strike out".

The prestigious title as Jazz Composer of the Year went to drummer and composer Laurits Hyllested for debutpladen, Darling River, where the compositions and the wide-ranging improvisations intertwine in unexpected and unforced ways.


Sinne Eeg won Vocal Jazz Release of the Year together with The Danish Radio Big Band. Photo: Marie Hald

Special awards and two new jazz scholarships
With the support from the William Demant Foundation, two new jazz scholarships were awarded to the Musician of the Year and the Orchestra of the Year. Drummer Anton Eger was honored with the title Musician of the Year DKK 20,000 for his virtuoso playing and ability to present the audience with completely new and undiscovered sound. Orchestra of the Year and the accompanying DKK 30,000 went to All Too Human for the orchestra's ambitious and inspiring ability to both challenge and push its audience far beyond the predictable.

JazzDanmark Award for this Year's Innovative Concert Experience was given to the terrific and illuminative concept, Copenhagen Harbour Parade, arranged by Mai Seidelin og Johan Bylling Lang. A floating New Orleans-inspired parade in the canals of Copenhagen, which was diverse in both experience and among the audience on land and at sea. Saxophonist and composer Nana Pi Aabo Larsen was honored with the P8 Jazz Award for her extensive work for the music community in Fredericia with Den Kreative Skole, IMPRO CAMP, FredagsJAM, and as author of the music sigh language Extemporize.


Winners DMA Jazz 2020

Jazz Album of the Year
Maluba Orchestra - Maluba Orchestra (Sundance Music & Stunt Records)

Jazz Composer of the Year
Laurits Hyllested - Darling River (AMP Music & Records)

Experiment of the Year
Maria Faust Sacrum Facere - ORGAN (Sundance Music & Stunt Records)

Vocal Jazz Album of the Year
Sinne Eeg & The Danish Radio Big Band - We've Just Begun (Sundance Music & Stunt Records) 

New Name of the Year
Nikola Bankov - Bright Future (AMP Music & Records)

Kid's Jazz Award
Jorden Rundt med Malene Kjærgaard

JazzDanmark Award
Mai Seidelin and Johan Bylling Lang for Copenhagen Harbour Parade

P8 Jazz Award
Nana Pi Aabo Larsen

Jazz Scholarship 2020 - Musician of the Year
Anton Eger

Jazz Scholarship 2020 - Orchestra of the Year
All Too Human

Danish Music Awards Jazz is the annual award show, that celebrates the Danish jazz scene. On this one night of the year, the entire Danish jazz industry gathers to celebrate their love for jazz music, its many talented artists and the new releases and projects of the past year. The award show presents awards in the following categories:

  • Jazz Album of the Year

  • Vocal Jazz Album of the Year

  • New Jazz Name of the Year

  • Jazz Composer of the Year

  • Experiment of the Year

  • Kid’s Jazz Award


In addition, two extraordinary awards are presented:

  • The JazzDanmark Award – Most Innovative Concert Experience of the Year

  • The P8 Jazz Award - Danish Broadcasting Corporation’s jazz channel P8’s own award, where listeners nominate the contestants

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