Halifax Jazz Festival moves online this summer

This year's celebration of all things jazz goes virtual with 16 weeks of free concerts, workshops and activities

The stage is set at the Sonic Temple Recording Studio for many of this year's online performances at the TD Halifax Jazz Festival. Photo: Halifax Jazz Festival/Facebook.
The stage is set at the Sonic Temple Recording Studio for many of this year's online performances at the TD Halifax Jazz Festival. Photo: Halifax Jazz Festival/Facebook.

Like many arts organizations worldwide, the Halifax Jazz Festival (HJF) is moving online for what is calling its Virtual & Vibrant summer programme.

“While we would love to be coming together on the iconic Halifax Waterfront, we are just as honoured to join you in your home,” say HJF organizers in a media release. “We’ll be bringing the music online straight to your couch, cottage, or patio this summer through sixteen weeks of free concerts, workshops and activities for you and your family.”

The summer programme kicked off in June in collaboration with the National Arts Centre (NAC) to present two Facebook Live concerts in the NAC’s #CanadaPerforms #RoadToCanadaDay series.

In July, audiences will once again be able to tune into Facebook for Canadian Jazz Interviews. In this online series every Tuesday, CKDU radio hosts Andrew Jackson, and Charles Hsuen will take turns chatting with jazz artists including saxophonists Mike Murley and Allison Au, trumpeter Lina Allemano, and singer Heather Bambrick.

As part of its educational offerings, the Jazz Fest will present a quartet of Jazz Labs via Zoom and Facebook on Thursdays through July. In these virtual sessions, audiences will have an opportunity to learn the basics of jazz arranging with James Shaw, Brazillian percussion with Ross Burns, African drumming with Dr. Henry Bishop, or learn about extending guitar effects with Amy Brandon.

Online performances will once again make an appearance in August with three nights of local talent.

Recorded at the Sonic Temple Studio and streamed via Facebook and Youtube, the deep summer performances will kick off with Electro Jacques Therapy & Krasnogorsk along with Corey Adams on August 6.

The series will continue on August 7 with Andre Fenton & Samantha Wilson and Easley, Stevenson & Arsenault, and concludes on August 8 with performances from Jah’Mila and Jerry Granelli.

For the remainder of August, the Halifax Jazz Festival will share stories from some of its volunteers and team members.

“After the announcement that HJF 2020 would not proceed as planned this year, our team set out to create an online festival experience that would unite and inspire music lovers at home this summer,” say organizers. “We are excited to present a program that highlights and celebrates the amazing community, people, talent, and spirit of the East Coast.”

For details on all of the virtual events at this year’s TD Halifax Jazz Festival visit halifaxjazzfestival.ca.