The Adelaide Jazz Festival is back

After sell-out shows in 2023, the Adelaide Jazz Festival (AJF) is back in 2024 to present another weekend-long program of live performances celebrating the city’s UNESCO City of Music designation leading up to UNESCO International Jazz Day. This year’s program showcases some of South Australia’s finest emerging and established musicians, with some exclusive guest performances.

The AJF’s new Creative Partner, Elder Conservatorium of Music, The University of Adelaide, presents New York-based alumni, pianist Matthew Sheens in an exclusive concert at Elder Hall. Fresh from playing two shows at Byron Bay Bluesfest with Women of Soul Collective, Naarm/Melbourne-based soul-jazz vocalist, songwriter, and producer Chelsea Wilson heads to Adelaide for one show only at the AJF.

The local line-up features rising star, drummer and bandleader Alexander Flood. In the past few years, Flood has performed across Australia and Europe, bopping heads and moving feet with his original compositions and infectious rhythms. He’ll be joined by Naarm/Melbourne-based flautist Erica Tucceri who was recently announced as Melbourne International Jazz Festival’s 2024 Take Note Jazz Leader.

AJF Creative Partner, Adelaide Festival Centre, again present their UNESCO International Jazz Day Concert, this year featuring the Thomas Voss Big Band supported by the Enne R. Project.

And there’s plenty more on the AJF line-up for this year. “I’m so excited about the diversity in this year’s program,” says AJF founder and Creative Producer, Kaya Blum. “We’ve got big band, we’ve got nu-jazz/dance, we’ve got bebop, trad, soul, Latin jazz, modern jazz, funky vibes, and even a second line, which I hope will get plenty of people dancing through Rundle Mall.”

The traditional New Orleans-style second line will be led by the fabulous Atlantic Street Band. This free event kicks off from the Mall at King William Street from midday Saturday. 

Some new live music venues join the program this year, including The Lab, Hal’s Hall, and the intimate Ern Malley Bar. The Jade and the Grace Emily are back, with the Grace again hosting the late-night jazz jam which drew a full house last year.

“We want to support small live music venues as well as our local musicians,” says Blum. “This is a community-focused festival aimed at supporting the local jazz community and providing audiences with a unique live music experience that’s financially accessible, especially in these challenging times.”

“We’re incredibly grateful to Creative Australia and the City of Adelaide for making this year’s festival possible,” she adds.

See the full AJF Festival program (and book tickets) here