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DjangoFest Mill Valley


DjangoFest Mill Valley Tickets

Get tickets to all of the DjangoFest Mill Valley shows online from the Throckmorton Theatre.

DjangoFest Mill Valley 2015

June 12-14, 2015

Celebrating its 10th year, DjangoFest Mill Valley, presented by the Throckmorton Theatre, is back in this truly incredible venue, bringing the music and spirit of the great French/Belgian Gypsy guitarist, Django Reinhardt, to our many loyal fans.  We have a tremendous, world-class line-up this year, with three nights of concerts and three days of workshops all set in the beautiful Redwoods of Northern California.  

On Friday evening, June 12th we have, making his Mill Valley début,  the German Gypsy 'Guitar Monster', Joscho Stefan.   His Mastery of the guitar is a thing to behold. Opening for him, in their DjangoFest début, are the highly acclaimed East Coast favourites, Occidental Gypsy. After the show on Friday, at 10:00 pm, all are invited for a Festival opening party at Vasco, featuring some delicious Italian food and drink, set to some fabulous 'Djamming'.  This will be be an awesome evening with something special for everyone

Saturday evening, June 13th.   Hot Club of Holland with Paulus Schäfer , Tim Kliphuis and Simon Planting bring their talents back to the Throckmorton , for an extraordinary display of virtuosity and musicianship done the 'Dutch way'.   This is the ‘real deal’, Gypsy Jazz played by three of the hottest players in Europe today. Opening for them is the incredible, Trio Dinicu, one of fastest rising groups on the scene today, with their exquisitely modern take on traditional Roma and Eastern European music, with a special appearance by the legendary Sinti bassist, Frank Anastasio.  

On Sunday, June 14th at 5pm, the Rhythm Future Quartet, led by DjangoFest regular, Jason Annick and the Finnish phenomena, Olli Soikkeli, will amaze and delight with their highly original displays of virtuosity. And finishing the festival will be our traditional Euro Djam, featuring both Olli and Jason along with Paulus Schäfer, Tim Kliphuis, Simon Planting, Ivan Pena and more.

And as always, we will offer a world class series of workshops, designed for both the beginner and the advanced, with openings for both guitarist and violinists interested in pursuing this style.  See the workshop schedule.

After Sunday night's concert and djam session, stay at the Throckmorton Theatre for the Closing Celebration Party.

Please join us and other Gypsy Jazz fans, players and enthusiasts from around the world, to congregate in beautiful  Mill Valley and attend this incredible series of concerts, workshops and impromptu ‘Djam’ sessions, featuring top internationally renowned players mixing it up with local stars and aficionados of the genre.

Presented by

DFMV 2015 Lineup

  • Hot Club of Holland
  • Joscho Stephan
  • Rhythm Future Quartet
  • Trio Dinicu
  • Leah Zeger Quartet
  • Occidental Gypsy

Festival Opening Party

Vasco 10:00 pm Friday, June 12th.  Delicious Italian cuisine, full bar, and lots of Djamming with the stars!


Friday June 12th 8pm

  • Occidental Gypsy
  • Joscho Stephan

Saturday June 13th 8pm

  • Trio Dinicu with special guest Frank Anastasio
  • Hot Club of Holland w/ Paulus Schäfer , Tim Kliphuis and Simon Planting

Sunday June 14th 5pm

  • Rhythm Future w/ Jason Annick and Olli Soikkeli
  • Euro Djam - with Paulus Schäfer , Olli Soikkeli, Tim Kliphuis, Jason Anning, Simon Planting, Ivan Pena and more.

Friday June 12th

  • 12:00-1:30 Jason Vanderford - The Essential Gypsy Swing Rhythm Workshop

    The unmistakable sound of "La Pompe" is one of - if not THE defining characteristics of Gypsy Jazz. Pair that with responsibility and role that the rhythm guitar holds ( provide the timing, the feel, the tempo, the SWING and at the same time supply a harmonic foundation) having a good rhythm player is a important and necessary ingredient to ANY Gypsy Swing ensemble hoping to emulate the traditional "Hot Club" sound. In this clinic, seasoned Gypsy Jazz guitarist Jason Vanderford will cover right/ left hand technique and synchronization, chord shapes and voicings , stylistic variations , TONE, meter, memorization and all the other traits and aspects that make an efficient and appropriate Gypsy Swing Rhythm player.

    Jason Vanderford has been in the Gypsy Jazz scene for over ten years playing professionally with countless Gypsy Jazz bands and traditional Jazz bands including the Hot Club of San Francisco, Avatar Ensemble, Little Charlie Caravan, Clearwater Hot Club, Americano Social Club, Clint Baker's New Orleans Jazz Band to name a few. He has jammed and studied with a gamut of major Gypsy Jazz players such as Birelli Lagrene, Hono Winterstein, Lulo Reinhardt, Bucky Pizarelli, Howard Alden, Doug Martin and Alphonso Ponticelli, all with a focus on the rhythm guitar role of the ensemble. He has taken great pride in playing rhythm guitar and for the first five years of playing in the Gypsy Jazz style refused to play any lead guitar until he felt he could be a solid accompaniment for a lead player to execute the intricate melodies that this style of music demands. He plays professionally for a living, resides in Oakland, Ca and leads his own Gypsy influenced band, Junk Parlor.

  • 2:00-3:30 Joscho Stephan - Gypsy Jazz Guitar Inside-Out

    Joscho Stephan Gypsy Jazz Guitar Inside-Out

    Learn from an internationally-renowned master of Gypsy Jazz guitar!  Insights and stories on how a young man in modern-day Germany discovered the amazing stylings of Django Reinhardt will lead into a hands-on study of right- and left-hand techniques, rhythm guitar, solo guitar, and improvisation.  

    Gypsy Jazz offers an ideal platform for highly talented guitarist Joscho Stephan, a performer who appears to know no technical boundaries. Just 20 years old when he released his first CD on the highly regarded label Acoustic Music Records, his name was already known to insiders as a force to be reckoned with on the acoustic guitar.  Stephan belongs to a new generation of guitar virtuosos who are introducing fresh stylistic elements into Gypsy Swing.  His concert appearances leave audiences open-mouthed and spellbound.

    In this workshop, which is open to all levels of guitarists as well as spectators, Joscho has promised to share his "secrets of Gypsy style."


Saturday June 13th

  • 12:00-1:30 Paulus Schäfer Gypsy Jazz - "The Dutch Style"

    Paulus Schäfer Gypsy Jazz - "The Dutch Style"

    Paulus Schäfer will teach how to play easy Gypsy Jazz "The Dutch Style". Coming from a genuine Sinti community in The Netherlands, their ’teacher’ was a fellow Sinti named Wasso Grünholz, who taught many Dutch Gypsies to play guitar.

    Paulus will include the following items in his workshop:

    • Plectrum/pick grip and technique
    • The importance of rhythm guitar playing
    • Various strokes and development of the rhythm hand, which will be demonstrated via various rhythms
    • How to play an easy solo accompanied by an easy technique of rhythm hand
    • Coordination of rhythm hand and solo hand
    • How to play a solo within various rhythms, using different pick techniques/strokes


  • 2:00-3:30 Frank Anastasio and Tommy Davy - Authentic Gypsy Guitar

    Frank Anastasio and Tommy Davy Authentic Gypsy Guitar

    This class is a comprehensive examination of the techniques and authentic rhythm styles from the Parisian way of Gypsy guitar. 

    You will gain an innate understanding of this rich style of guitar playing. Students will cover the traditional musette valse, csardas, Romanian rhythms, Gypsy rhumba, proper right hand technique as well as swing. The class will also include group participation, coaching and learning how to comp in a trio format. Bassists are also encouraged to attend.


    • Right Hand Technique
    • Eastern European Rhythms
    • Russian Style Chords
    • Embellishments
    • Economy of motion/Gaining volume
    • Chord substitutions: the Gypsy way
    • Chord/Basslines
    • Mixing Influences
    • Gypsy Picking
    • Quality of tone

    Frank Anastasio: guitarist, bassist and the son of Pierre Anastasio the famous luthier. He learned to play the guitar first with his father and the Gypsy guitarists of his neighborhood in Paris. In 1980, he met guitarist Laurent Bajata who introduced him in 1984 to Serge Camps which has just created the cabaret La Roue Fleurie.. He recorded during this time the album Gypsy Guitars (Hot Club Records) with Serge and Angelo Debarre. After this period at "La Roue Fleurie" and until 1995 he played in Parisian cabarets with, Boulou & Elios Ferré, Florin Niculescu, Marc Loutchek, Trio, and Arbat. He recorded two albums with Arbat. Since 1995 he has been the guitarist and singer of Dark Eyes with which he performs in concert on French and international stages and recorded 6 albums.

    Tommy Davy is a professional Gypsy jazz guitarist and the curator of He can be seen playing with his group Trio Dinicu and backing European artists such as Angelo Debarre, Serge Camps, Lolo Meier, Tcha Limberger and Robin Nolan.

  • 2:00-3:30 Luanne Homzy - The Gypsy Virtuoso (for violin)

    Luanne Homzy The Gypsy Virtuoso (for violin)

    First prize winner Luanne Homzy (International Chamber Music, Hamburg, Canadian Music Competition) is one of the youngest prominent violinists pushing the boundaries of crossover musicianship today. Her versatility spans from classical, chamber music, film soundtracks to jazz and Gypsy. Proof that music is universal. Proof that great art is boundless.

    In her special workshop - beneficial for all levels of violinists – Luanne will explore:

    • Sound production: proper posture, bowing technique, vibrato
    • Gypsy techniques: glissandi, rubato, playing fast
    • Gypsy tricks (prestidigitation): left hand pizzicato, harmonics, special effects
    • Practicing at home: strategies and methods to improve at home in the most efficient way

    Don’t miss this rare opportunity to learn from one of the upcoming young violinists of our times!


Sunday June 14th

  • 12:00-1:30 Jason Anick - Swing Fiddle

    Jason Anick Swing Fiddle

    For this workshop, Jason will examine a standard swing tune and various classic licks and phrases to help you start improvising over that tune. Phrases will be taught by ear but will be supplemented with sheet music. He’ll also cover various stylistic approaches (vibrato, bowing, etc.) to help you get that authentic swing sound achieved by jazz violin greats like Stephane Grappelli and Joe Venuti.


  • 12:00-1:30 Tim Kliphuis Grappelli - Licks on Your Favorite Gypsy Jazz Songs

    Tim Kliphuis Grappelli Licks on Your Favorite Gypsy Jazz Songs

    Violinist Tim Kliphuis is the world's foremost player and teacher in the style of Stéphane Grappelli. His collaborations with Fapy Lafertin, Angelo Debarre, Stochelo Rosenberg and others have led to performances on the main stages worldwide; his Mel Bay book on Grappelli is an international best-seller. 

    Working within context of his latest book "Grappelli Licks", Tim will teach dozens of trademark Grappelli melodies in all the common Gypsy jazz keys, so you can use them everywhere. Songs are: Coquette (D), Limehouse Blues (G), Shine (C), Japanese Sandman (F), I've Found a New Baby (Dm), Minor Swing (Am), Sheik of Araby (Bb). 


  • 12:00-1:30 Olli Soikkeli - Developing Your Own Style

    Olli Soikkeli Developing Your Own Style 

    Olli Soikkeli has played with many Dutch Gypsies guitar masters like Paulus Schäfer and Mozes Rosenberg. He's also known for playing with American musicians like Bucky Pizzarelli, Frank Vignola and Gene Bertoncini.

    In this unique and personal workshop, Olli demonstrates how he developed his own style from these different influences. He then teaches how to apply licks and lines from other styles of music to Gypsy Jazz and Gypsy jazz ideas to other styles. Be sure to catch this well-rounded, idea-expanding workshop!


Prices and Seating Info

Prices and Seating Info

Get tickets to all of the DjangoFest Mill Valley shows online from the Throckmorton Theatre.

Featured Artists

Hot Club of Holland

  • Paulus Schäfer - Guitar
  • Tim Kliphuis - Violin
  • Simon Planting - Bass

One of the great hot beds of contemporary Gypsy Jazz is Holland, and this lineup is among the best there can be!  Among them, this group of extraordinary musicians represents every facet of Gypsy Jazz music from heritage and culture to innovation, musicianship and leadership in the greatest Gypsy Jazz bands during the last 20 years.

Paulus Schäfer is an exceptional representative of the internationally renowned Dutch School of Gypsy jazz. He grew up in a Sinti community on a caravan camp in Nuenen, Holland, where everyday was spent playing with teachers as Waso Grünholz and Stochelo Rosenberg.  

The Neatherland’s Tim Kliphuis is an award-winning violinist and a legend in the Gypsy Jazz world. He has worked with the “best of the best” including The Rosenberg Trio, Fapy Lafertin and Angelo Debarre. He has performed at all the major Django festivals worldwide and is seen by many as the inheritor of  Stéphane Grappelli’s crown. His latest CD,  “The Grappelli Album”, has received rave reviews.

Simon Planting is the undisputed leader among Gypsy jazz bassists, having played with the crème de la crème of jazz manouche guitarists such as Fapy Lafertin, Jimmy Rosenberg, Angelo Debarre, Dorado, Tchavalo and Samson Schmitt, Robin Nolan, Andreas Oberg, John Jorgenson, Gonzalo Bergara, and other jazz greats, Larry Coryell, Bill Frisell, and Howard Alden to name a few. The Dutch native, who now lives in San Francisco, has toured the world numerous times playing Gypsy Jazz, and he has been a player on countless classic recordings of Gypsy Jazz during the past 30 years.

Rhythm Future Quartet

  • Jason Anick - Violin
  • Olli Soikkeli - Guitar
  • Greg Loughman - Bass

When four young jazz virtuosos decided to join forces, the Rhythm Future Quartet was born. Named after the Django Reinhardt tune, the Rhythm Future Quartet performs dynamic and fiery arrangements of Gypsy jazz standards and original compositions. The quartet features Jason Anick on violin, Olli Soikkeli on guitar, and Greg Loughman on bass. Over the years they have individually been performing alongside top Gypsy jazz/swing musicians like John Jorgenson, Frank Vignola, Bucky Pizzarelli, Andreas Öberg, Mark O'Connor, and Howard Alden and have finally joined forces to form this special group. 

"Collective jaws dropped at the sheer virtuosity of The Rhythm Future Quartet!  The group's stellar musicianship, good humor, and reverence for this important musical tradition made for an unforgettable evening.  We can't wait to have them back!"

- Dana Packard, The Saco River Theatre

Joscho Stephan

  • Joscho Stephan- Guitar

When Joscho Stephan first arrived on the scene at the Samois Django Reinhardt Festival, more than ten years ago, the grounds were soon abuzz over this young German Gypsy 'guitar monster'.  Since then he has become an international musical sensation, known for having the amazing ability to play nearly anything you or he can imagine.  Besides his incredible “chops”and imagination, he has a willingness to explore and take chances that brings audiences back time and again to see his astonishing feats of digital dexterity, which is why we are pleased to be bringing Joscho back to DjangoFest Mill Valley for another dazzling display of six-stringed pyrotechnics.

Trio Dinicu

  • Luanne Homzy - Violin
  • Tommy Davy - Guitar
  • Frank Anastasio - Bass, Vocals

Hailed as "dazzling" by the San Francisco Chronicle, L.A.’s Trio Dinicu combines the forces of three world-class musicians - a lightning-fast violinist with touching expressivity, a virtuoso guitarist with Gypsy authenticity and a legendary Parisian bassist with deep soul - who bridge the gaps of classical, jazz and folklore, expanding these genres as never before.

Highly regarded for their unique creativity, Trio Dinicu blends the depth of classical training with the spontaneity of jazz and the excitement of the European folk tradition. They have performed for enthusiastic audiences across the United States and Canada at venues such as Djangofest Northwest in Washington and Music By The Sea at Bamfield in Canada, as well as on American National Public Radio. They have also engaged in performances for the under-privileged in collaboration with the L.A. based musical activists from Street Symphony.

Their repertoire consists of traditional pieces - folk, gypsy, classical or jazz - that the Trio reinvents in its own language, leaving the listener in awe and always wanting more. 

Occidental Gypsy

  • Eli Bishop – violin
  • Jeff Feldman- bass
  • Jeremy Frantz – vocals & guitar
  • Erick Cifuentes – percussion
  • Brett Feldman – lead guitar

Occidental Gypsy’s sound appeals to a wide spectrum of listeners, and their shows consistently draw enthusiastic audiences at colleges, arts centers, festivals and clubs. The band has found a unique, artful beat and plays a dynamic mix of original vocal and instrumental pieces-- as well as a few memorable standards-- in fun, exhilarating performances. Occidental Gypsy's music cannot be easily classified; a bit of jazz,a catchy strain of pop, and "a whole lotta’ gypsified swing…" 

Occidental Gypsy features award-winning violin prodigy Eli Bishop who recently toured with Wynton Marsalis and has also played with Bill Evans of the Miles Davis Group. This national touring act has played at the legendary Nighttown in Cleveland, Old Town School of Folk Music in Chicago, Bluebird Cafe in Nashville, and Blue Wisp in Cincinnati. 


Throckmorton Theatre

The Throckmorton Theatre is founded on the philosophy that theatre, music, dance, film, poetry, visual and related arts are essential components of a rich and rewarding life, and an indispensable part of human inspiration and education.

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