Themes of the 23rd Annual Festival: New Orleans
Join Vail Jazz in celebrating the the 100th birthday of the genre! In 1917, New Orleans-based a Dixieland Jass Band record was the first to be stamped as "jazz," and the city maintains its reputation as the heart of jazz music to this day. The 23rd Annual Vail Jazz Festival features music and performers from all over the United States and across the globe, but the New Orleans theme recurs periodically -- here's what to look for.

The Vail Jazz Gala on July 10, entitled From Bridge Street to Bourbon Street, features 9-time New Orleans male vocalist of the year, John Boutte, joined by three Vail Jazz Workshop alumni, including New Orleans native, Jeffrey Miller ('18 - trombone).

A few days later, the premier exporter of the New Orleans jazz and blues piano tradition, Henry Butler graces two Vail stages -- solo piano for the Vail Jazz Club Series at the Sonnenalp Hotel on July 12 and with Butler, Bernstein & the Hot 9 for a rousing set in the Jazz Tent in Vail Square on July 13.

As jazz music spread across the globe, it took hold in Cuba, forming the roots of a vibrant culture and spawning several unique sub-genres. Members of the 14-piece Cubanismo!, along with Dr. Michael Davison (University of Richmond) will demonstrate the evolution of Afro-Cuban jazz (August 9 at the Sonnenalp) and then the full ensemble will blow the walls off the tent for Vail Jazz @ Vail Square (August 10). And even these all-stars of their genre paid homage to the music's New Orleans roots on a record in 2000 with John Boutte and fellow Louisianan Topsy Chapman entitled "Mardi Gras Mambo."

We invite you to all these and all of the 75+ performances comprising the 23rd Annual Vail Jazz Festival this summer as we celebrate 100 years of jazz, the great music city of New Orleans and several other themes.

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