The first acts have been announced for Cheltenham Jazz Festival which happens at Montpelier Gardens, Cheltenham in Gloucestershire from Wednesday 1st to Monday 6th May 2019.
Announced for a three-year role as Artistic Curator, curating a series of artists for the festival and working in collaboration with guest artists is Gregory Porter, who will also performs his own headline show on Saturday 4th May.
Gregory said "Cheltenham Jazz Festival has an international reputation for bringing the very best artists together and producing unique shows. I'm very excited to be working with the Festival team to help create this extraordinary artistic village." Jamie Cullum who has filled the role since 2010 will become Associate Curator and said: "Like me, Gregory has a history with this great festival I am delighted that he will be joining the team at Cheltenham to bring audiences unique events, intimate shows with major artists and highlighting the next generation of incredible artists."
Also performing at the festival will be Brazilian bossa nova legend Sergio Mendes who plays the Big Top on Saturday 4th May, also on the Saturday is American saxophonist Joshua Redman with drummer Gregory Hutchinson and bassist Reuben Rogers, and with new pianist Orrin Evan the trio The Bad Plus will perform on the Sunday. The full Cheltenham Jazz Festival line-up will be announced on Wednesday 13th February.
Changes from last year include a 50% increase in capacity for the Big Top, to 2,000 seats. The Free Stage will move to a new position within the Festival Village on Montpellier Gardens to ensure that the crowds who gather to see the top local and national talent for free over the Bank Holiday weekend have space to sit back and relax.
Head of Programming Emily Jones said: "It's a pleasure to announce these first four artists as we continue to bring the best in jazz to Cheltenham, especially when so many more people will be able to enjoy the gigs next year thanks to our bigger Big Top venue. With Gregory Porter on board, we also have some unique experiences in store which will be revealed when the full line-up is announced next year."
Tickets will go on sale at 1pm on Thursday 29th November.
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