Ivan Mazuze is a Norway based composer, award winning saxophonist and world jazz artist of Mozambique origin. Mazuze initiated his studies in music at his home country Mozambique at the National Music School in 1987 with piano as first instrument. After 7 years of classical piano training Mazuze joined the woodwind section of the same school with jazz study approach with focus on improvisation. After finishing the basic elementary music school, Mazuze continued his studies at the Department of Jazz and Musicology at the University of Cape Town, South Africa.
Ivan Mazuze is Honors degree in jazz and composition studies and Masters graduate in ethnomusicology at University of Cape Town. Mazuze also writes ethnomusicological articles about music and trance in ritual practices, which has been released in the educational magazine “The Talking Drum”.
From the start Mazuze had a clear vision of what he had to do in order to reveal himself as a solo artist in the music industry.
In 2002 Mazuze is a winner at Old Mutual Jazz Competition in the category of Composition in Cape Town, South Africa.
Mazuze realized that educating himself and mastering his instruments was not enough, and while studying he set up his own production and publishing company to handle the administration and business side of his career. As with all aspiring musicians, at a young age, Mazuze dreamt of the day when he would record his own music.
But, for this disciplined musician, the dream became a goal, the goal became part of his ambition, the result was his debut album "Maganda (2009).
The album Maganda is a reflection of Mazuze’s musical journey and experiences in jazz and African "worlds" of music. Maganda was nominated for the following categories and awards:
1. Best Afro World Group in the Oslo World Music Festival 2009.
2. Best Contemporary Jazz Album at SAMA awards 2010 (South African Music awards).
3. Winner in two categories for best Afro Jazz album and jazz/instrumental album at Mozambique Music Awards 2010.
4. Recommended best newcomer and saxophonist of 2010 at African Jazz Network.
In 2012 Mazuze releases an album namely Ndzuti (2012) which means, “shadow” in the ancient language of Xichangana of southern Mozambique. The music on the album Ndzuti has elements from both southern and West African traditions with Jazz based structures.
The album Ndzuti was chosen as recommended album at African Jazz Network 2012 and as one of the key albums of the year 2012 by Music Information Center Norway (MIC) during the summer 2012 as well as recommended 10 best album of 2012 at the Songlines Magazine.
In 2015 Mazuze releases his third album Ubuntu (2015), a highly acclaimed album within the Nordic media critics. The album features Norwegian and South African based musicians.
In 2016 the album Ubuntu was chosen to be part of the compilation album JAZZCD.no 7th Edition in Norway. This compilation gives a good picture of the Norwegian jazz scene today, ranging from mainstream to more modern forms, including what has come to be known as the Nordic sound. JazzCD.no – 7th set shows the variety, the versatility and the quality of jazz in Norway as of today.
Mazuze releases album Moya (2018). "MOYA" a word that translates as ‘spirit/soul’. The album is rich with melodic and rhythmic delights that have been lovingly selected and sculpted from African and Indian traditional music, is in an all-embracing way, soul music.
Amongst other awards and recognitions Mazuze has received a specialisation scholarship for the years 2015 and 2020 from the Norwegian Jazz Forum. This scholarship has been granted to various jazz bands and musicians in Norway based on their artistic merit. Its purpose is to contribute to professional jazz musicians the freedom to immerse themselves in their art form.
Mazuze has also received various work related composition grants for his albuns Ndzuti, Ubuntu and Moya. Grants including from Oslo Municipality (2011) and Norwegian Composer’s association (2011/2014). Recently, Mazuze is the recipient of the scholarships within Composition work related from NOPA (2017), Norwegian Composer’s Association (2017) and TONO (2016). Lately, Mazuze is the recipient of composer's Grants from the Norwegian Composer's association (2020), NOPA (2020) and finally TONO (2021).
As a based artist in Norway since 2009, Mazuze has been representing "world jazz" coming out of Norway at numerous music events and festivals in many parts of the world in collaboration with Norwegian based cultural institutions such as Arts Council Norway and Music Norway. Mazuze has performed at music venues and festivals such as: Oslo Jazz Festival, Seoul Music Week, Amersfoort Jazz festival, Nasjonal Jazzscene, Cosmopolite Scene, Pisa Jazz Festival, Jazztage Gorlitz Festival, Jazz no Franco, Peperoncino Jazz Festival, International Academy of Music Festival, DiVino Jazz Festival, Copenhagen Jazz Festival, Havana International Jazz Festival, Musica Sulle Bocche Jazz Festival, Grahamstown Jazz Festival, Joy of Jazz Festival, Locomotive Jazz Festival, Nick la Rocca Jazz Festival, Mela Festival, Cape Town International Jazz Festival, Womex in Copenhagen, by'Larm, Musicastrada Festival and many more.
Saxophonist and composer Ivan Mazuze emerges from a long tradition of jazz musicians in southern Africa. Mazuze is continually an important representation for this genre.
Mazuze has been since 2013 a contributing artistic mentor for the International Jazz Day celebrations in Oslo and Drammen cities in Norway.
Additionally Mazuze is the initiator for the implementation of the International Jazz Day in his home country, Mozambique, with its ever first edition in 2015.
Between 2015 to 2021 Mazuze seats as a board member for the National and International folk music, joik and folk dance representation in Norway, Riksscenen.
Currently, Mazuze seats as member advisor at artistic selection committee for the Norwegian Jazz Forum. Mazuze have seated as member of election committee for the Samspill International Music Network in Norway in 2021. Currently Mazuze seats as a board member for Cosmopolite Scene in Oslo city, Buskerud Theater and as part of the advisory committee for Arts Council Norway specifically the scheme for concert organiser and festivals in Norway.
Mazuze is the musical leader together with Unni Løvlid for Talent program 2016/2017 at the Førdefestivalen in Norway.
Mazuze seats currently as a cultural consultant for Interkultur at Drammen municipality in Norway. Mazuze is responsible to present international profiled cultural expressions to the Drammen region as well as developing exciting new concepts.
Mazuze is a member of jury for talent program «Jazzintro» 2022, which is a launch program for young, Norwegian jazz musicians that showcase at the country's largest jazz festivals. Since its inception in 1998, Jazzintro has been very important in highlighting and highlighting the talents of Norwegian jazz. Many of today's big jazz names have participated in Jazzintro early in their careers.
Mazuze releases his latest album Moya (2018) partly funded by Arts Council Norway. “This is truly captivating music. It is a blend of old and new, a merge of east and west, a mix of style and substance."
Mazuze is currently writing a commission work "Penuka" for Global Oslo Music to be presented spring 2023 financed by the Arts Council Norway.