02/2024: 2ndFLOOR e.V. announces “recording project” for young musicians for the 5th time

recording project 2024

Competition of the 2ndFLOOR e.V
3 two-day recording sessions at the LOFT are to be won.
Thanks to a generous donation from a good friend of the LOFT, it will once again be possible to award a jury prize of €1,000.


Over the past 34 years, the LOFT in Cologne has become one of the most distinguished venues for jazz and improvised music in Germany. In June 2021, it was presented at the 1st German Jazz Award as Club of the Year vote for by the more than 1,300 members of the German Jazz Union (UDJ), at the 3rd German Jazz Award ceremony in April 2023, the UDJ members once again chose the LOFT as – this time – Venue of the Year.

Contributing to its success, in addition to the excellent acoustics, the special atmosphere and, of course, the two excellent concert grand pianos (a Steinway D and a Yahama C3), is above all the recording studio, which is known far beyond its borders. More than 1,000 recordings from the LOFT have been released on CD or digitally to date.

In 2019, the association 2ndFLOOR e.V., which organizes the LOFT concerts, announced its recording project for young musicians for the first time; the space and studio were made available to the association free of charge for this purpose, and additional funds came from the Spielstättenprogrammprämie of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, which the LOFT has always received since it was announced 15 years ago, and which among other things recognizes the promotion of regionally effective bands and up-and-coming artists.

The recording project has now been successfully carried out four times (2019, 2021, 2022 & 2023), and many of the resulting recordings have already been published. In January 2024, the 2ndFLOOR e.V. association was again awarded a prize at the Spielstättenprogrammprämie of the state of NRW, so that the recording project can also be advertised in 2024.

The offer is principally aimed at jazz musicians from North Rhine-Westphalia and jazz students at the universities in Cologne, Essen and Mainz. Bands with an average age of up to 25 years, as well as soloists who are not older than 25 years, can apply.

The deadline for applications is March 4th, 2024.


Required application documents:

  • short curriculum vitae of the applicant
  • two recordings (also self-made documentation recordings – e.g. with Zoom
    or comparable – are welcome)
  • short concept (max. 1,000 characters)
  • overview of the line-up including age information of the musicians involved

please send by mail to: info@loftkoeln.de

A total of 3 prizes of two studio days each will be awarded between July and August 2024. The recordings must be made in the time window between July 1st and August 31th 2024 – please take this into account when applying.
A jury consisting of the chairmen of 2ndFLOOR e.V., Prof. Shannon Barnett and Prof. Sebastian Sternal, as well as the sound engineers of the LOFT, Christian Heck and Stefan Deistler, will decide on the award.

Thanks to the generous donation of a good friend of the LOFT it will be possible to award the best application with a jury price of 1.000€.


download the announcement (PDF – german only)