Cork gears up for Jazz Festival

Guinness is set to deliver the biggest ever jazz event in Ireland this October Bank Holiday Weekend (Oct 25 - 28), with a stunning music line-up, specially programmed to celebrate Cork’s 25th year of the festival.

Guinness is set to deliver the biggest ever jazz event in Ireland this October Bank Holiday Weekend (Oct 25 - 28), with a stunning music line-up, specially programmed to celebrate Cork’s 25th year of the festival.

Building on the festival’s huge domestic and international success of recent years, Guinness UDV Ireland has once again put together a programme full of big hitters – from the world’s No 1 jazz guitarist, John Scofield, to the internationally acclaimed jazz pianist, Brad Mehldau; from the legendary composer/performer Joe Zawinul to the powerful Cuban sounds of Gonzalo Rubalcaba.

Mr Michael Lyons, Sales Manager, Guinness UDV Ireland, speaking at the launch of the festival line-up at Guinness House, Cork, (Oct 2nd) said that more than 40,000 people were expected to attend the event from home and overseas, generating over €20 million for the Cork economy. He also announced a 10% increase in seated concerts to cater for the boom in attendances.

In line with the constantly changing musical direction of the festival some of the hippest, coolest young stars of world jazz will also be in Cork including Jason Moran, Lonnie Plaxico, Jim Black, Nasheet Waits, Mimi Fox, Abraham Burton, Jeremy Pelt, Jenny Scheinman and Julian Arguelles.

And the beat goes on – with performances by US legends such as Jean Toussaint, John Abercrombie, Sir Roland Hanna, Dewey Redman, Larry Coryell, Bill Frisell, Paul Wertico, Ron Miles, Lanny Morgan, Roy Ayers and blues legend, Odetta.

As ever, the famous Guinness Festival Club at the Gresham Metropole Hotel is at the heart of the music action with five jazz stages giving fans a choice of world class talent, day and night.

Among the many big names appearing will be Georgie Fame, Barbara Dennerlein, Mike Carr, Peter Appleyard and a heavy Irish jazz representation headed by Louis Stewart and Honor Heffernan.

Cork’s Opera House will play host to two of the biggest gospel music attractions in the jazz world – The Blind Boys of Alabama and the Harlem Gospel Choir – while the Everyman Palace Theatre presents five major shows throughout the weekend, all bound to be sell-outs.

The hugely successful Guinness Jazz Pavilion at the Imperial Hotel, launched last year, will be another major venue, featuring ten top acts over two nights – while the Triskel Arts Centre will double its number of concerts.

The Savoy Theatre will feature a range of contemporary sounds throughout the weekend and will kick off the festival on Thursday night with a “must-see” show by Asian Dub Foundation.

The Guinness Jazz Festival is now one of the biggest arts and cultural events in the country, utilising 12 major stages, 130 bands and over 1,000 musicians from 29 countries. There is also a full range of fringe events from master classes to jazz cinema.

To cope with the increasing number of visitors to Cork, the famous Guinness Trail has been expanded once again and will offer jazz, rhythm & blues and roots music, mostly free of charge day and night in over 70 pubs and clubs throughout the city.

Mr Pat Horgan, Chairman of the Cork Jazz Festival Committee, said, “it will be a weekend to remember as we celebrate 25 years of great jazz music”.

US sax star, Jean Toussaint was a special guest at Guinness House for the launch of Cork’s 25th festival line-up.

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