World stars celebrate Joy of Jazz

Johannesburg - This year will see a new look for the Standard Bank Joy of Jazz. Not only will the jazz festival move to the Sandton Convention Centre, but dates have also been changed to September 25 to 27. The decision to change the date was because of the weather, and so that the event would take place during Heritage month celebrations.

One of the good things about the move is that for the first time the public will be able to buy a full festival pass to the three main stages – Dinaledi, Conga and Mbira.

MUSICAL GREATS: Jazz vocalist Gregory Porter was voted top rising star in two categories in the Down Beat Critics Poll this year. Credit: Supplied

The fourth stage, named Diphala (which replaces the Bassline stage), will be more intimate, catering for a jazz audience who demand silence during a performance.

Jazz buffs will buy a separate ticket for entrance to Diphala.

Although the full line-up for this year’s festival will only be announced in May, Joy of Jazz has decided to whet jazz fans’ appetites by naming two Grammy Award-winning jazz men who will perform at this year’s event: Trumpeter Roy Hargrove and vocalist Gregory Porter.

Porter was voted top rising star in two categories in the DownBeat Critics Poll this year: male vocalist, and jazz artist of the year.

Roy Hargrove, who plays trumpet and flugelhorn, will be bringing a hot band with him comprising Justin Robinson on sax and flute, Sullivan Fortner on piano, Ameen Saleem on bass and Quincy Phillips on drums plus Roberta Gambarini; a highly-rated jazz vocalist and star in her own right.

Tickets will go on sale at Computicket in May.