Syncopation Society Orchestra


eyond Dixieland revival and commercial roaring twenties entertainment, the Syncopation Society as a musical collective represents a vibrant Berlin subculture, closely linked to the city’s diverse swing dance scene. The Syncopation Society Orchestra is a reflection of this young and innovative scene, approaching early jazz with authenticity and attitude.

The 10-piece ensemble is dedicated to reviving the repertoire of the first great jazz formations, playing dance music from the mid-1920s through the mid-30s, including original arrangements specially transcribed for orchestra by the best composers of the time (Fletcher Henderson, Luis Russell, Duke Ellington, and others). The SSO is one of the few major ensembles in Europe that is historically informed and intensively engaged with early forms of jazz.

Since its inception in 2020, the orchestra has performed regularly at dance events and festivals, including Berlin’s Balboa Weekend and Bohème Sauvage (Wintergarten Berlin), as well as festivals such as Fest Jazz (FR) and the Festival Jazz à l’heure d’été in Angers (FR). The annual festival of the music collective Are You Syncopated?! in 2022 and 2023 also led to collaborations with international guest stars such as Jack Woodhead, Ewan Bleach, Meschiya Lake, Mauro Porro, Nicolle Rochelle and Olivier Franc.

The Syncopation Society’s aim is not only to keep the early forms of jazz alive, but also to inform and educate about the context of their creation, both musically and in a social, cultural and political sense. With this in mind, the Syncopation Society Orchestra also offers school concerts and workshops.

The ensemble plays in an instrumentation of 10 or 11.

Johannes Böhmer  / Hippolyte Fèvre | trumpet
Laurent Humeau / Jürgen Hahn | trumpet
Anton Wunderlich / Johannes Lauer | trombone + vocals
Eldar Tsalikov / Bastian Duncker | alto saxophone + clarinet
Laurin Habert | alto saxophone + clarinet
Florent Mannant / Claus Jacobi | tenor saxophone + clarinet
Carlos Santana / Camille Phelep | piano + vocals
Katharina von Fintel / Quentin Bardi  | banjo
Nikolai Scharnofske / Malte Tönißen | sousaphone + double bass
François Perdriau | drums
Jack B. Latimer | vocals (optional)