It was named the best new festival. It made the Top 100 list in the province.
From Sept. 6 to 9, the community can see what all the hype is about for themselves, if they haven't already, at the fourth annual Jazz Sudbury Festival.
Carmen Simmons, executive director of the Sudbury Community Foundation, said the festival is only getting better as it grows.
This year, The Nylons are headlining the event with a Friday night show at the Collège Boréal Main Stage on the shores of Ramsey Lake at Science North.
“The Nylons are a name a lot of people have come across,” said Cecilia Aparicio, business development officer at the SCF.
The group's 15th album, Skin Tight, was up for a Juno for Best Jazz Vocal Album, marking another milestone for the collection. The group has performed more than 1,000 concerts in dozens of tours around the world.
“From their formation in the back of a delicatessen in Toronto in the late 1970s to headlining at Carnegie Hall, The Nylons have a storied history,” according to jazzsudbury.ca.
“Their first album went gold in only two months and eventually went on to become a Canadian platinum seller with big hits Up The Ladder To The Roof and The Lion Sleeps Tonight. The Nylons are renowned for their vibrant live shows, featuring dazzling harmonies, smooth arrangements, tight choreography, and fabulous showmanship.”
Other headliners at this year's Jazz Fest include Nikki Yanofsky of Vancouver 2010 Olympic Fame and former festival "icon" Kellylee Evans, as well as Canefire, Tia Brazda and Lorraine Klassen. The festival wraps up with a morning service by All Nations Church, followed by a gospel performance by the Toronto Mass Choir.
Simmons said since the festival's inception, it has provided an alternative festival atmosphere for those who might not frequent Sudbury's other summer events.
“It gives a brand new audience a chance to come to a festival,” she said. “It provides an additional opportunity. It creates something neat for us in the city.”
This year's event also includes an Emerging Artist contest. Two locals, as well as one jazz musician from Toronto, are vying for $1,000 and bragging rights. The festival also begins with a film screening. Director Sidney Furie will be on hand to answer questions about the 1972 classic Lady Sings the Blues.
“To have this award-winning director participate is a tremendous milestone and drives our festival kickoff evening to the next level,” said Christine Sola, business and marketing strategist for Jazz Sudbury.
Another highlight of the festival is the release of Philip May's latest recording. Endearingly named Sudbury, the album is a statement against the common misconceptions people have about the Nickel City.
“The city has a history of producing fine musicians and composers whose work occasionally bubbles through the Sudbury Saturday Night stereotypes that abound,” a media release stated.
Most of players on the album have roots in Sudbury, and rank as some of “Canada's finest,” May stated.
“That they chose to record with me, I believe, reflects well on the musical integrity of the album.”
May and his quintet hit the stage at 6 p.m. on the Saturday of the festival.
For more information about the festival, visit www.jazzsudbury.ca. Tickets can also be purchased online, or by phoning 705-673-7770.
Brian Quebec Trio
Patricia Cano and Thomson Highway
Philip May Quintet
Nickel City Dixie Stompers
Laurentian Jazz Combo
Allan Walsh Trio
The 1500 All Stars
Toronto Mass Choir