Media Release: The Guelph Jazz Festival Starts One Month Today

Following a successful event in 2021 that was reconfigured to meet public health measures, the Guelph Jazz Festival will present a full festival in its pre-pandemic structure in one month’s time, 15-18 September. The 2022 Festival will feature ticketed indoor and free outdoor concerts, including the notable return to its highly popular ‘GJF in Market Square’ events, including the Friday Night Street Music Party.

The ticketed concerts feature the genre-bending 24-piece Montreal electro-acoustic ensemble led by Sam Shalabi, Land of Kush, performing the opus, Sand Enigma, notably released on Constellation Records. Chicago composer and guimbri-player Josh Abrams presents a special nine-piece version of the cascadingly hypnotic Natural Information Society (Community Ensemble with Ari Brown). Montreal-based composer and drummer John Hollenbeck presents GEORGE, assembling phenomenal artists from different cities and milieux: Anna Webber (NYC), Aurora Nealand (New Orleans), and Chiquita Magic (Toronto). Late-night concerts present two further Constellation Records artists playing adventurous song-based material: Eric Chenaux (France) and Kee Avil (Montreal). 40-year collaborators Jean Derome and Pierre Tanguay are Plinc! Plonc!, quintessential Montreal improvised music. Toronto composer Pete Johnston presents Stranger Still, his suite of eclectic art songs that set texts by celebrated poet Alden Nowlan that are tied deeply to Johnston’s home province of Nova Scotia. The programming extends further Maritime connections with Collateral, featuring Haligonians Norman Adams and Tim Crofts with Sam Shalabi on guitar and oud, and a solo concert by the brilliant trumpeter Nicole Rampersaud, now based in rural New Brunswick. This latter show pairs Rampersaud on a double-bill with seasoned Montreal harp experimentalist, Sarah Pagé. Apart from his solo concert, guitarist Eric Chenaux will reunite after 12 years with Yukon-based dancer, Aimée Dawn Robinson, for a concert of improvised dance and music.

The ‘GJF in Market Square’ program, the most widely popular element of pre-pandemic festivals, returns in 2022 to present free live music in the heart of Downtown Guelph the evening on Friday 16 September, and all afternoon and evening on Saturday 17 September. The Saturday programming includes the radical Polaris Prize-winning Colombian Canadian singer and composer Lido Pimienta, a second concert by Natural Information Society (Community Ensemble with Ari Brown), the powerfully funky NYC James Brandon Lewis Trio, Toronto electro-dream-pop group Bernice, Doug Tielli’s Imaginary Brass Band, Toronto party band Doghouse Orchestra, and the Guelph Youth Jazz Ensemble. Friday night once again features the Street Music Party in Market Square, featuring four all-acoustic ‘human powered’ dance music bands playing in and among the audience in the Market Square enclosure: Montreal’s legendary 18-piece brass band, La Fanfare Pourpour; Anishnaabeg powwow legends, Chippewa Travellers; a new Toronto horns-and-drum project exploring Ghanaian folk-and popular song, Libation Street Band; and the festively funky Heavyweights Brass Band.

Building on the success of our 2021 GJF in the Parks, the festival will once again present free live music in four city parks outside of the downtown core in partnership with the Guelph Neighbourhood Support Coalition and the local Neighbourhood Groups: Norm Jary and Brant Parks (17 September), and Mollison and York Road Parks (18 September), featuring the ensembles from the Friday Night Street Music Party.

Further outreach programming includes the GJF Podcast Sessions, featuring live interviews of festival artists by accomplished Southern Ontario music podcasters before a live audience. Pete Johnston (Northern Static) will interview Anna Webber; Carey West and Steve Donnelly (Four33) will interview Eric Chenaux and Aimée Dawn Robinson; and Richard Marsella (Industry Tactics) will interview Nicole Rampersaud.

For media enquiries, please contact Scott Thomson, Artistic and General Director,
[email protected] // 519-763-4952.

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