This article was published in 2007.
A dizzying line-up of acts has been announced for the first Big City Jazz festival in Leeds on August Bank Holiday weekend.
The star-studded line-up features big names and exciting British acts such as The Chris Barber Band and Clare Teal who are sure to give jazz lovers, and newcomers, a bank holiday to remember.
The newly restored Tiled Hall in the Leeds Art Gallery is hosting a free Lunchtime Jazz café on Saturday 25th August. Sunday and Monday’s acts will appear in a specially created arena in Millennium Square which will be covered, so guests’ spirits are not dampened by any rain.
Especially for ‘Chill Out Sunday’ New Orleans enthusiast Chris Barber has put together his biggest ensemble yet, for a Jazz, Swing, Ragtime, Rhythm ‘n’ Blues and Big Band showcase featuring some of the world’s most prodigious jazz and blues players. Following him is winner of the BBC Jazz Vocalist 2006, Clare Teal. After the stunning top twenty success of her debut release Don't Talk in 2005, the singer, songwriter and presenter returns to the stage with songs from her new album Paradisi Carousel.
Monday 27th August is ‘Focus on Young Britain’, in association with Leeds Jazz which is headlined by Finntet, recently declared Best Band at the BBC Jazz Awards.
Finntet are not the only act to have generated such a buzz recently: the curiously named Led Bib experiment in an edgy, raucous mix of jazz, punk and rock, and are all set to shake up Big City Jazz while Shabaka Hutchings (mentored by Courtney Pine) will be in town with his band Splay.
‘Focus on Young Britain’ is kicked off earlier in the day at 2pm by Leeds-based reggae funk band Chichino, followed by jazz and soul jumble Organ Donor and drum and bass fused Electric Dr M.
Much sought after tickets go on sale from 30th July and can be purchased from the City Centre Box Office at the Carriageworks, Millennium Square, Monday to Saturday from 10am to 8pm or by telephone on 0113 224 3801.