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Liverpool International Jazz Festival 2024 headliners revealed

Liverpool International Jazz Festival returns in 2024 and the first artists have now been revealed.

Among those heading for the city from February 22-25 will be saxophonist Tommy Smith and pianist and composer Gwilym Simcock, bassist and songwriter Yolanda Charles, David Helbock Austrian Syndicate and The Attuned Quartet.

And the festival, the 11th annual event, will be closed by saxophonist – and giant of the UK jazz scene – Denys Baptiste.

The annual festival takes place at the Capstone Theatre on Liverpool Hope University’s Creative Campus in Everton.

It opens on Thursday, February 22 when Smith and Simcock come together in a collaboration which involves a repertoire drawn from many different musical backgrounds.

Smith is one of the world’s leading saxophonists and has worked with the likes of Chick Corea, Jaco Pastorius and Dame Cleo Laine while Simcock has carved out a career as one of the most gifted pianists and imaginative composers in Europe. 

February 23 will see the David Helbock Austrian Syndicate perform.

Expect plenty of percussion, groove, and keyboards in the spirit of Austria’s most successful jazz musician, Joe Zawinul.The Saturday afternoon of the festival will see a collaboration with Liverpool’s own Indian arts and culture company, Milap.

The Attuned Quartet will showcase a fusion of jazz and Indian classical music using electric violins, guitar, tabla and cello to create melodic material based on Raags of North and South India, with Latin and jazz tradition influences.

Above: Yolanda Charles. Top: Denys Baptiste.

Then in the evening, internationally renowned bassist and songwriter Yolanda Charles -who has worked with a rollcall of musical talent during a 30-year career from Hans Zimmer to BB King and Paul Weller to Mick Jagger - will take to the Capstone stage.

Here she will perform with her Project pH Instra-mentals group, which features a diverse range of musical styles.And finally, February 25 sees Denys Baptiste close the festivalThe Late Trane sees Baptiste reimagine and rework compositions from John Coltrane’s late music (1963 -1967) with a fresh and modern new interpretation, perfectly balancing Baptiste’s unique artistic vision with the visceral emotions and cosmic references that encompasses Coltrane’s late music.

Along with the headliners, the festival will also see performances by the Liverpool Hope Big Band, a Liverpool Jazz Celebration in the Cornerstone Building and a special jazz event – Cali Discs – in the city’s Caledonia Pub.

Tickets are available for individual events or a full festival ticket costs £60.

Liverpool Jazz Festival runs from February 22-25, 2024. Full details and booking HERE


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