History & Vision

History

The Guelph Jazz Festival (GJF) was founded in 1994 to present creative improvised music in the city. Artistic Director Ajay Heble and Director of Operations Julie Hastings led the organisation for many years as it developed a strong international reputation. The organisation has produced 26 years of excellent programming, including virtually every major figure in creative improvised music, while maintaining its commitment to Canadian artists, both regionally and from farther afield.

In 2017, Scott Thomson was hired as Artistic Director, and in 2019 he was also named General Director with Karen Ng hired as Assistant Artistic and General Director. Currently, Thomson and Ng collaborate on all aspects of GJF programming and administration.

Awards

  • Winner, Premier’s Award for Excellence in the Arts, 2010
  • Finalist, Premier’s Award for Excellence in the Arts, 2009
  • Nominee, Festival of the Year, National Jazz Awards, 2009
  • Finalist, Premier’s Award for Excellence in the Arts, 2008
  • Finalist, Events Producer of the Year, Jazz Journalists Association, 2008
  • Winner, Lieutenant Governor’s Award for the Arts, 2001, 2000, 1997

Vision

Guelph Jazz Festival presents excellent, unconventional live music.

Mission

Guelph Jazz Festival presents excellent, unconventional live music. The Festival strives to present music that reflects the world in which we live and to make it accessible to the broadest audience through concerts, educational initiatives, and free programs.

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