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Everything’s Great in Guelph — Unless You Ask Sainkho Namtchylak

Ray Vega

It may not have the reputation of other, more high-profile, annual European festivals but this 26th edition of the Bern Jazz Festival, run by Hans Zurbrugg and his wife, Marianne Gauer, proved that in terms of scope, production and presentation it deserves to be ranked among the best.

In Bern, the capital of Switzerland, festival headquarters is the Hotel Innere Enge, a most comfortable, 52-room establishment. There are rooms named for, and dedicated to, Lionel Hampton, Louie Bellson, Wild Bill Davison and Milt Hinton. One for Dizzy Gillespie is in the planning stage. We were delighted to stay in the Hinton room, its walls decorated with photos of Milt, his awards and other memorabilia. In the hotel’s basement one finds Marian’s, a handsomely appointed jazz club that doubles as a mini-museum.

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