Jazz is a drug and we want to make sure you know where to get some when you are in Kazan. Check out the following list and pick a spot that suits you most.
This bar hosts free live jam jazz sessions every Thursday. The stage is open to everyone, so you’re bound to see a mix of very different performers, improvising in different music styles — from up and coming local bands practicing their craft in front of a live audience to famous Russian and even international jazz artists. The menu gives similar fusion vibes listing both haute cuisine and fast food type dishes, so does the bar offering everything from coffee to absinthe.
Jazz, funk, swing, Latino — Rockstar bar jams to any music style for any music taste. Jam sessions are held almost every day. If, for some odd reason, there doesn’t happen to be one, you can start your own — go up the stage and improvise! And after being admired — get a burrito: this bar specializes in Tex-Mex food. Make sure to try their whiskey too, Rockstar Bar is known to have one of the best selections in the city.
This restaurant swings to the “fancy” side of things with its sophisticated interior, delicious and extensive menu, and immaculate service — it’s got everything to make you feel like wearing your pince-nez. Or you can just go dancing instead — the restaurant hosts live music (jazz and other) sets daily. You can end your soiree with a glass of wine or coffee in their mansard café, or even rent a room in the cozy mini-hotel the restaurant is sharing the building with — those guys have thought of everything, haven’t they?
The historical estate of Kazan’s Governor-General Alexander Sandetsky now belongs to the State Museum of Fine Arts of Tatarstan. It made it to our list because the International Improvisational Music Festival “JAZZ in Sandetsky Estate” is held here every summer for over 10 years now. Every Thursday of July and August some of the brightest local and international jazz stars perform here in the open-air. Each performance is an event of its own and music lovers are guaranteed to find sets to their liking — the festival brings together different musical styles from mainstream to avant-garde.
In 2015 Kazan joined some other major Russian cities like Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Voronezh and Yekaterinburg in hosting the largest annual local jazz festival “Jazz Usadba”. The festival takes place in Park Tysyacheletia located in the heart of Kazan. It’s dedicated to all kinds of improvisational music — from traditional jazz to experimental electronics. In addition to a swanky musical program, “Jazz Usadba” entertains its guests in many other ways including souvenir and crafts market, food court and kid’s activities, and it’s absolutely free to attend.
Kazan State Conservatoire spoils jazz lovers with live concerts quite regularly. They organize monthly jazz & jam evenings, where enthusiastic novices can practice jamming alongside famous artists. Here you can enjoy the world’s famous hits and the rarely performed pieces written by Soviet jazz composers in an authentic Soviet atmosphere — the conservatoire was built in 1945.
The Salikh Saidashev State Concert Hall is nested in the most central square of Kazan and surrounded by many notable places, such as the Town Hall, the State Council, and the Opera House. It’s come to be the main concert platform of Tatarstan. Regional, all-Russian and international festivals and concerts are held here, and of course outstanding jazz performances are no exception.
In the beginning of the 20th century, this historic mansion was transformed into a communal apartment where the famous Russian writer Vasily Aksyonov used to rent a room. Now, this building is turned into a museum dedicated to the life and the work of this great master. In addition to the permanent exhibition, the memorial house hosts concerts and creative masterclasses on a regular basis. Every last Wednesday of the month is dedicated to live jazz get together organized by one Kazan’s famous jazz collectives. Each live music session is accompanied by stories, photos, and videos of Vasily Aksenov’s life.