ABC Jazz Home > Events > 2015 Wangaratta Festival of Jazz and Blues

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Get the latest festival news and info here, including the program, headlined by US trumpeter Dave Douglas.

Following a hugely successful 25th anniversary festival in 2014, the 2015 Wangaratta Festival of Jazz and Blues looks set to be even bigger. In 2015, there will be a new format with new performance spaces, creating an opportunity to introduce new audiences to one of the world's most unique jazz festivals.

The rural Victorian town will play host to some of Australia's leading jazz artists, including James Morrison, Mike Nock, Gian Slater, Alister Spence and Kristin Berardi. There will also be a number of visiting international musicians, including the US trumpeter Dave Douglas, who will be performing with his quintet and with one of our own icons, pianist Paul Grabowsky. Speaking of pianists, the New York-based Matt Mitchell will be performing solo at the Holy Trinity Cathedral.

Seeing as this year's National Jazz Awards will be focused on the bass, there will be a number of prominent bass players featured over the Victorian long weekend. Linda Oh is one Aussie export making waves in the US scene. She will be joining Dave Douglas on stage, as well as appearing with her own quartet. American bassist David Friesen is also visiting, and will be performing both solo and in a duo with Mike Nock. Phil Stack is yet another bassist who has had a long history with Wangaratta. He was the winner of the 2008 National Jazz Awards, the last time bass was the feature instrument, and in 2015, he will be leading his own trio with guitarist James Muller and drummer Tim Firth (who also won the National Jazz Awards in 2000 and 2011 respectively).

The 2014 Freedman Fellow Aaron Choulai will be visiting from Japan where he is now based, leading a trio of Hugh Harvey (drums) and Tom Lee (bass). The Tasmanian drummer Ted Vining will also appear in a number of different settings, including with his band 'Blow' as well as with pianist Tony Gould and bassist Nick Haywood.

The Wangaratta Festival of Jazz and Blues also has had a strong history in supporting younger musicians, and this year, Monash University students will be featured alongside Dave Douglas, as well as with their own big band. Students from the newly established 'James Morrison Academy' from Mt. Gambier will also be represented, with a show at the new Gardens venue.

Also on the bill for this year's festival: Chris Cody, Daniel Susnjar, Dave Goodman, Emma Pask, Hammerhead, Lloyd Swanton, Jackson Harrison, Paul Williamson, Will Martina and Zac Hurren.

And don't forget, there will be plenty of blues happening around town too.

See here for more on the line-up, plus artist bios. The full time schedule will be released shortly.

Below is a snippet from Dave's My Favourite Things episode, with Gerry Koster...

Artist Biography


Dave Douglas (born March 24, 1963) is an American jazz trumpeter and composer whose music derives from jazz, classical music, folk music, electronica and klezmer. Since 1993, Douglas has recorded more than forty albums as a bandleader. He has produced more than fifty, including all albums released by his independent label, Greenleaf Music. He has also performed and recorded with dozens of...

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On Aug 26, 2015. 8:49pm


On Jul 3, 2015. 11:30am
Jim Nash said

This will be great! Saw Dave Douglas in Melbourne last year - was excellent.

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