The Springfield Jazz And Roots Festival
The 2017 Springfield Jazz and Roots Festival will feature trend-setting musicians, revolutionary conversations, workshops, and special initiatives that highlight the unique nature of Springfield and western Massachusetts. Each year, The Festival celebrates music, art, and its host, the City of Springfield, as a hub and a leader of cultural excellence in the region.
Although the official Festival begins Saturday, August 12 in Court Square, stop by City Stage on Friday, August 11 for an inspired evening of jazz and conversation. Entitled Jazz and Justice, this special fundraiser will feature Christian Scott, a Grammy-nominated trumpeter hailed as one of the most dynamic composers and performers on the scene today. As a prelude to the music, Scott will be joined by fellow musicians, Charles Neville and Sarah Elizabeth Charles in an intergenerational conversation exploring art as a means for addressing and overcoming forms of social injustice.
The conversation starts at 7 pm and the concert begins at 8. VIP tickets include an artist reception at 6 pm. Visit citystage.symphonyhall.com for tickets.
THE MAIN EVENT
On Saturday, August 12 in Court Square, experience passionate vocalists, innovative music makers and foot-stomping beats! Talent lineup includes The Jeremy Turgeon Quintet; Community Grooves, (the faculty band of the Community Music School); the Latin beats of Zaccai Curtis & Insight with vocalist Natalie Fernandez; Springfield native Sarah Elizabeth Charles and her band SCOPE, with special guest trumpeter Christian Scott. Innovative bassist Miles Mosley graces the stage, and is followed by the beautiful sounds of vocalist Lizz Wright. And last but not least, dance the night away to the sounds of Rebirth Brass Band.
At this year’s Springfield Jazz and Roots Festival, we continue to celebrate our community by hosting a variety of special initiatives and activities to engage and excite the crowd!
New Orleans style Brass Band Camp & Second Line Parade
In collaboration with the Community Music School, student musicians will participate in this New Orleans Brass Band Camp, focused on history and musical training in the tradition of New Orleans brass and marching bands. Instructors include saxophonist Charles Neville, CMSS faculty musicians and AmeriCorps staff. Then, on August 12th students will lead a Second Line Parade to kickoff the Festival! Participants will gather at the Community Music School at 11AM and the parade begins at 11:30AM, marching down State Street and into Court Square. Everyone is invited to come down and march in the parade!
Hip Hip HOOPLA! Jazz Fest Celebrates Our Proud History of Basketball
Whether you watch it or play it, the spirit of the game is hard to miss! The birthplace of basketball and home to the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame, the Festival pays homage to that tradition with HOOPLA Basketball activities, produced in partnership with the Basketball Hall of Fame, the Dunbar Community Center, and Stone Soul Festival organizers. There will be special guest celebrity players. Proficient dribblers are invited to bounce their balls in our Second Line parade!
The Urban Roots Initiative
An ongoing focus of our work has been to raise awareness on social and environmental issues. This year, the Festival introduces a food program that highlights local and sustainably grown food as a centerpiece of the festival experience. This program is developed in partnership with a number of gardening organizations including Springfield’s Gardening The Community, Nuestras Raices, Wellspring Greenhouse, and UMASS’s urban agriculture program.
The Springfield Jazz and Roots Festival is made possible by scores of volunteers, and is funded solely from donations from individuals, organizations and corporations including MassMutual, Xfinity, NAI Plotkin, Mass Live, The Republican, and Trinity/Mercy Medical Center and other generous supporters.
Music, Food and Fun for everyone! For more info about the Festival, to become a sponsor and to volunteer, visit springfieldjazzfest.com or email Kristin_neville@yahoo.com.