For those of you following my Twitter feed or Jazz@Rochester on Facebook (or the post below), you might have seen that I was at the press conference this morning for the 10th Anniversary Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival, which will run from June 10-18, 2011. Producers Marc Iacona and John Nugent announced the full lineup, which will be the largest festival to date, with more than 1000 artists performing at 285 concerts and a record 70-plus free concerts. Previously announced headliners are Elvis Costello & The Imposters, Natalie Cole, Béla Fleck & The Flecktones – The Original Lineup, The Fab Faux (a Beatles tribute band), "The Glorious Hodgepodge Show" with the Tangerine Crème Strings & The Hogtown Horns, k.d. lang and The Siss Boom Bang. Today, XRIJF added trumpeter Chris Botti to the headliners. As in the past, the lineup (which you can access on XRIJF's site) has some familiar faces and some new artists. I feel like there are more local jazz artists gracing the Club Pass stages this year. As Nugent always says (and it's even on their t-shirts...) "it's not who you know, it's who you don't know). So, what’s new in 2011? Here's what they told us:
- Rochester Gas and Electric, has signed on as a new sponsor, and will present a new free concert stage in the RG&E parking lot on the corner of East Avenue and Chestnut Street (now we'll have to go around the parking lot, or possibly get sidetracked...). The stage will feature six free shows with Rochester and regional artists.
- The East Avenue and Chestnut St. Stage will be resituated on Chestnut street to face south on Chestnut to accommodate more people in the intersection and help with the sound wars that develop with the free stage on Jazz Street.
- As I posted about awhile back, the Eastman School of Music will offer the five-part course, Introduction to Jazz History, during the Festival. It will be held June 13 – June 17 in Eastman’s newest concert venue, Hatch Hall, during the Festival. Tuition is $180. For information and to register visit the Press Room on the XRIJF site.
- XRIJF and WXXI-TV are partnering again on a new series of six one-hour programs to be filmed at this year’s Festival and distributed nationally to PBS stations this fall and next year. The concerts to be featured include the performances of Kevin Eubanks, Curtis Stigers, Grace Kelly, Kenny Barron, Regina Carter and the Producer’s Concert.
- Channel 13 WHAM TV will produce a half-hour prime time special on the Festival celebrating the Festival’s 10th anniversary that will air Thursday May 26 at 8 p.m. Doug Emblidge will host the program, which will also air on Rochester’s CW in a time period yet to be scheduled.
I will have coverage over the next few months, supplementing what you'll find in other sources and on the XRIJF site. More on that later.... Hope to see you on Jazz Street in June!