Copenhagen (Denmark) 1992 (10th)

The 10th Ellington Study Group Conference took place in Copenhagen May 28-31, 1992.

The lead organisers of the conference were Arnvid Meyer, Niels Toft and Karl Emil Knudsen – three leading figures in the Danish jazz and Ellington community. They organised the conference together with the recently founded ”The Scandinavian Duke Ellington Society – Danish Chapter”.

It followed in the path of previous Ellington conferences and offered an ambitious program mixing musical events and presentations.

The full program is here.

All the presentations at the conference are available as sound recording made by the organisers. Unfortunately, the balance between the sound of the speaker and from the screen is not very good but as far as possible it has been corrected in the editing process.

Sjef Hoefsmit did not attend the conference so there are no videos from him. However, Benny Åslund was present at the first two days of the conference and did some filming.

The original video tapes has not been found but apparently some of them was copied to a VHS cassette which has been located. It is currently being digitized.


The conference had two principal themes – Ellington in Denmark and Remembering Duke.

Below are links to the presentations at the conference in chronological order. Most of them are also available via the articles about the conference, which were published on the website in January-May 2019.

Opening of conference (Arnvid Meyer)

The Duke and The Tiger (Dan Morgenstern)

Duke Ellington’s Influence on Danish Jazz (Erik Wiedemann)

Duke Ellington On  Film – Foreign Connections (Klaus Stratemann)

The Temporary Significance of Duke Ellington (Stanley Crouch)

Recreating Ellington – Problems and Rewards (Panel discussion)

Duke Ellington in France. My Brothers in Goutelas  (Francois-Xavier Moulé)

The Ben Webster Foundation and Its Activities

Ellington on Television (Leonard Malone)

Memories of Duke # 1 (Leonard Feather)

Memories of Duke # 2 (Panel discussion – Leonard Feather, Clark Terry, Rolf Ericson)

Inspiration From Ellington Bass PLayers to Danish Bass Tradition (Erik Moseholm)

The Duke Ellington Tape Collection Donated by Mercer Ellington to Danish Radio (Erik Moseholm, Bjarne Busk, Flemming Sjölund Jensen)

After Duke. Six Ellington Sidemen in Their Years After Leaving The Band (Phil Schaap)

Portraits of The Duke (William F. Hill)

Ellingtonians in Paris (Alexandre Rado)

The Ellington-Strayhorn Collaboration (Andrew Homzy)

Ellington the Pianist (Brian Priestley)

Duke Ellington in London June-July 1933 With Notes on the Genesis of Black, Brown and Beige (Austin H. Lawrence)

“Simulated Improvisation” in Duke Ellington’s Black, Brown and Beige (Wolfram Knauer)

Jump for Joy: The 1991 Chicago Revival (Richard Wang)


Like previous conferences, there was a lot of live music at Ellington ’92.

The reception which kicked off the conference was also a musical event. It took place at Woody’s at Bolten restaurant in the center of Copenhagen and the Danish/Swedish/American group Jan Kaspersen Septet provided the music.

The day after, May 28, was Ellington Nights at many clubs and restaurants in Copenhagen.

On May 29 there was the Gala Concert with many well-known jazz musicians like Abdullah Ibrahim, Svend  Asmussen, Jesper Thilo, Clark Terry, Buster Cooper, Arne Domnerus, Bength Hallberg, The New Jungle Orchestra and others performed.

A second Gala Concert took place the following day with The Danish Radio Big Band as main feature. There was also a late night Ellington Ball for conference attendees only.

Unfortunately, no recordings of the musical events has been found yet.


A selection of the photos taken by Bjarne Busk during the conference is available here.


Some of the participants reported about the conference in Ellington Society newsletters and similar publications.

DEMS Bulletin 1992-2