The Cuba Jazz Festival Is Coming Soon

By Irina Echarry

Preparando para Jazz Plaza 2016. Ilustración por Carlos
Getting ready for Cuba’s Jazz Plaza 2016. Illustration by Carlos

HAVANA TIMES — The 32nd edition of the Jazz Plaza Festival will be held from December 15-18, now with a new venue: Santiago de Cuba, which will co-host this musical event, along with Havana.

This time, the influence of jazz within dance will be explored with performances from the Irene Rodríguez and Lizt Alfonso dance companies, as well as the Cuban National Ballet. Meetings between famous artists and students from various at schools have also been announced; as well as the usual workshops, exhibitions, jam sessions and concerts.

Musicians from Argentina, Spain, Venezuela, the US, Colombia, Australia, the Dominican Republic, Holland and Cuba will convert our nights into jazz parties, giving us the gift of the most contemporary trends on the global jazz scene.

Invited artists include Terence Blanchard´s E-Collective, from the US, who will perform alongside Cuba’s Chucho Valdés; and the long-awaited Ivory Coast singer and French resident, Fatoumata Diawara, who will share the stage with our young pianist and composer Roberto Fonseca.

The Family Laws, Rachel Flowers, the pianist Randy Weston and Arturo O´Farrill, as well as TK Band, Millikin University Latin Jazz and Chapman Roberts will also all come from the US.

In Santiago de Cuba, a city that has a great jazz scene, the Iris Jazz Club and Sala Dolores will open their doors to co-host this event. Meanwhile, it will continue to be held in its normal venues in Havana: La Zorra y El Cuervo; Pabellón Cuba, Casa de la Cultura de Plaza and the Mella Theater. Each city will have an honorary chairman: the maestro Chucho Valdes will be in charge of the festival in the Cuban capital and Roberto Fonseca will manage it at the country’s eastern base.

Ever since 1980 when Bobby Carcasses created the Jazz Plaza Festival, excellent artists within jazz have passed trough our country, this year we’ll have many to choose from: Third World, from Jamaica, Stefan Jonson, from Sweden; Michel and his Latin Jazz Band, from Colombia; Canadian Doug Martin, Michaela Rabitsch Quartet, from Austria; Dion Parson & 21th Century Band, from the Virgin Islands; and Supernova Jazz Trio, from Argentina, to name a few.

14 thoughts on “The Cuba Jazz Festival Is Coming Soon

  • November 19, 2016 at 1:51 pm

    The Jazz Festival events are almost never sold out, and in the past they’ve only sold advance tickets at some of the venues and that the week beforehand. You are getting there 2 weeks in advance and should have no problem. They usually don’t have the final program until a few days before the event (juggling musician late arrivals, cancels and plane complications) begins so you wouldn’t want to buy your tickets so far in advance anyhow. Your best bet is to get to Cuba and then ask the person who responded to you as they instructed.

  • November 19, 2016 at 12:04 pm

    Thank you for your quick response. One person replied and provided a phone number to call when we arrive. Do these organizations have office locations that may be selling the festival tickets at when we arrive Dec 2? We will feel better knowing we have tickets or passes then and not wait until Dec 15 if it’s too late then and sold out???

  • November 19, 2016 at 6:36 am

    32 Festival Internacional Jazz Plaza 2016
    Del 15 al 18 de diciembre de 2016.
    Write to these addresses: The event is sponsored by the Centro Nacional de Músic Popular and the Cuban Music Institute.

    E-Mail: [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]
    Telephone: 72024232

    If you do not get a reply get back to us!

  • November 19, 2016 at 12:45 am

    Where can I purchase tickets or passes for the festival. Can I purchase online or ahead of the festival as I arrive in Havana Dec 1 and want to get tickets or passes for Dec 15-18. Thank you

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