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Melbourne International Jazz Festival 2012

Victoria Brown

Thu May 31 2012


IMMERSE yourself completely in the joys of music this year at the Melbourne International Jazz Festival taking place from June 1 to 10 across Melbourne. 

In the largest and most diverse festival of its kind in Australia, a combination of jazz royalty and the stars of a rising generation will gather in Melbourne to entertain us with more than 100 events during this year’s Melbourne International Jazz Festival.

This year will include thirty free events, eleven world premieres, thirteen Australian premieres, eight Festival exclusives and eight Australian/international collaborations.

Some of the exciting performances we can enjoy at this year’s Melbourne International Jazz Festival is the Australian debut of the keyboardist-composer Hiromi (from Japan), known for her flying fingers and electrifying stage presence. Saskwatch (from Australia) is also in hot demand with a hypnotic blend of R&B and soul.

Robert Glasper Experiment (from USA) is another exciting talent who has defied all genres with an amazing ensemble which combines jazz, hip-hop, R&B and rock into a singular unique voice.

“We can go anywhere, literally anywhere, we want to go. We all have musical add and we love it,” Robert Glasper said.

From Israel, talented saxophonist Eli Degibri.

Eli Degibri (from Israel) is a talented saxophonist. Described as “a rare find in jazz today” by jazz heavyweight Herbie Hancock, he is definitely one to watch.

The Festival will also be continuing the tradition whereby thousands flock to the Federation Square Main Stage to get their groove on, with a series of free opening weekend events starting on Saturday, June 2. Don’t miss With One Voice featuring Katie Noonan, an interactive concert featuring the music of many different cultures.

Following One Voice, the Qatar Airways Opening Celebration Concert brings together a top-secret rollcall of local and international performers to offer a sampling of what to expect throughout the ten days of the Festival fun.

ACMI will also be paying tribute to Jazz as the screen work of the festival’s special guest Terence Blanchard comes into sharp focus, in particular his collaborations with director Spike Lee – Summer of Sam (1999) and his Golden Globe Award- winning 25th Hour (2002).

In celebration of another film industry genius whose work has been heavily influenced by jazz, ACMI Jazz On Film looks at Woody Allen’s Sweet and Lowdown (1999), Bullets Over Broadway (1994) and a recent documentary on the filmmaker himself – Woody Allen: A Documentary.

As artistic director Michael Tortini puts it, “the festival is a great time to celebrate the talent we have in Australia and overseas. It is 10 days a year where those gifted musicians are celebrated and the community gets involved, so that is essentially why the festival is there.”

The Melbourne International Jazz Festival takes place from June 1 to 10. For more information on how to book tickets, visit the festival website

Video by Kenneth Leow