Kristijan Krajnčan, born 1986 in Slovenia, is an award winning drummer, composer, film composer and cellist. His ability to play various musical styles in groups that range from trio to big band gave him the opportunity to work with several internationally acclaimed artists and to perform around the world. Besides leading his own Kristijan Krajnčan Ensemble he is/has collaborated with Tarek Yamani Trio, Kaja Draksler Acropolis Quintet, Anton Goudsmit & The Ploctones, Big Band RTV Slovenia, Big Band Stageband, Anneguus Teerhuis Trio, Sri Hanuraga Trio, dumiTrio, Marzio Scholten Hologram Quintet, Mads Vinding to name a few.

He started his musical path with playing cello before going on to jazz drumming and composing. He graduated “summa cum laude” at the Prins Claus Conservatory in Groningen (The Netherlands) where his main teachers were Ralph Peterson jr. and Owen hart Jr. He spent half a year in New York as a part of exchange program, studying with John Riley, Richie Morales, Joey Baron and Tyshawn Sorrey. 

His debut album as a leader was released in June 2012 on Edict Records. It features Ambrose Akinmusire and Jimmy Greene.

Besides music he also directed five short art movies.

He obtained his Masters degree in “Composing For Film” at the Amsterdam Conservatory in 2013.



AWARDS and Participations

Semi-finalist of Thelonious Monk Jazz Competition for Drums (Washington, 2012)

Finalist of Keep an Eye Jazz Award (Netherlands, 2012)

Participant in “Dave Douglas Worskshop: Creative Composition and Improvisation” at Carnegie Hall (New York, 2010)

Finalist of the Dutch Jazz Competition (Netherlands, 2008)

Nominated for Harten Aas Trophee (Netherlands, 2007)

1st Prize jury award “Jazzon” for best Slovenian jazz composition (Slovenia, 2006)

Best Director Award - Festival of Slovenian Independent Film (Slovenia, 2006)

Chairman of Slovenia, invited to Bergen (Norway, 2000)

2nd Prize in Tortone (Italy)

3rd Prize in Zagreb (Croatia)

1st Prize of National competition for young musicians of Slovenia (1997 and 2003)

1st Prize in Goriza (Italy, 1997)

1st Prize in Stressa (Italy, 1996 and 1997)


Kristijan Krajnčan has performed in:

Slovenia, The Netherlands, Ireland, Norway, Belgium, Croatia, Italy, Austria, Czech Republic, Poland, Macedonia, Romania, Germany, Spain, France, Belarus, Turkey, Washington, New York, Lebanon, South Africa, Indonesia, Japan, China.

Recent notable performances:

2013 - Salihara Theater (Indonesia), Flagey Winter Jazz Festival (Belgium), Palace of Culture Minsk (Belarus), DRM: Democratic Republic od Music (Lebanon), Concertgebouw De Vereeniging Nijmegen (The Netherlands), VPRO ToneJazz Festival (The Netherlands), Jazz Club Hannover (Germany), JazzCastle Festival Wolfsburg (Germany), ArCub Live Open Air Festival (Romania), “Jazz Is Back! – B.P.” (Croatia), Oct-Loft Jazz Festival (China) 

2012 – Thelonious Monk Competition (USA), Java Jazz Festival (Indonesia), Vossa Jazz Festival (Norway), Jazzkaar Festival (Estonia), Edict Records Concert Series (Lebanon), Ljubljana Jazz Festival (Slovenia)

2011 – Grahamstown Standard Bank Jazz Festival (South Africa), Tokyo Jazz Festival (Japan), Bohemian Jazz Festival (Czech), 12 Points! Festival (Ireland), Skopje Jazz Festival (Macedonia), Boben in Lajna Jazz Festival (Slovenia), GreenHours 22 Jazz Club (Romania), Borusan Music House (Turkey)

2010 – Carnegie Hall (New York, USA), Bimhuis (The Netherlands), Jazz Festival Cerkno (Slovenia), Festival Lent (Slovenia), Cankarjev Dom (Slovenia), Amersfoort Jazz Festival (The Netherlands)

Others about Kristijan Krajncan


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