Fribourg Jazz Parade officially bankrupt

Fribourg Jazz Parade officially bankrupt
The Jazz festival had accumulated significant debts. Photo: Link-Art/Francois Gendre
The Jazz Parade in Marly, canton of Fribourg, whose 26th edition was cancelled in July due to heavy rains and “internal problems”, has been declared bankrupt.

The Jazz Parade filed for bankruptcy at the beginning of August, which was granted by a court in Sarine earlier this week, its spokesperson Isabelle Théron told the SDA news agency on Friday.

After the cancellation of the 2014 festival, due to run from July 3rd to 12th, “there was no other solution,” she said.

The parade had accumulated significant debts over its 25-year history, said Théron, the size of which was difficult to estimate.

Created by Jean-Claude Henguely, the Jazz Parade – which runs at a similar time to the much better known Montreux Jazz Festival – attracted around 35,000 spectators annually to watch performances by local and international jazz artists.

Originally staged in the centre of Fribourg, it was moved to a site in the suburb of Marly last year after disputes between Henguely and residents and a restructuring of its organizing committee.

Free to attend until 2006, it increasingly suffered from financial problems and in 2008 was granted a stay of bankruptcy after accumulating debts of half a million francs.

Internal organizational issues compounded the problems. This year’s event was cancelled after the Sarine authorities withdrew authorization, saying that basic security issues had not been addressed.

Heavy rain leading to flooding at the Marly site also contributed to the cancellation.

Festival organizers placed the blame squarely at the feet of Henguely, who was subsequently sacked.

Quoted by SDA, Henguely denied he was to blame, saying he was “simply an employee, with no responsibility for financial matters.”

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