Finding the Next Big Thing

Submitted: May 10th, 2016


Finding the Next Big Thing

Jazz for the Ages gives young artists a chance to perform

ST. CATHARINES, Ont. — The next big thing may just be around the corner. 

It could be a young lady who daily strums away on a guitar in the basement of her parents’ home, or the group of friends who get together every now and then to jam. Get a gig in the right place at the right time, and magic could happen. The TD Niagara Jazz Festival is looking to create that opportunity for Niagara’s brightest young musical talent with the Jazz for the Ages Youth Competition.

We`re very serious about involving the next generation not only in our Festival but also in music in general,” says Peter Shea, co-creator and Artistic Director of the Jazz Festival. “The auditions are a chance for budding young musicians to meet and build relationships with professionals in the industry.”

The Youth Competition is an opportunity for young soloists, singers or bands to showcase their talent for a chance to perform before live audiences at the Jazz Festival.

It starts on YouTube, where interested performers are asked to share a link — no longer than five minutes — of their performance. Finalists in three categories — under 12, ages 13-17 and 18-23 — will be invited to audition for a chance to perform in the Festival.

Auditions take place Tuesday, May 31st, 2016 at Laura Secord Secondary School from 4-9 p.m.

Winners of the Jazz for the Ages Youth Competition auditions will have a chance of a lifetime to perform alongside — and mingle with — professional musicians in the setting of an established jazz festival. The winning individuals or ensembles will be on the Youth Stage at Market Square in St. Catharines on Friday, July 29th and in Simcoe Park in Niagara-on-the-Lake on the Fiesta Stage on Saturday, July 30th.

It is of utmost importance to get young people involved in music,” says Juliet Dunn, co-creator and Executive Director of the Festival.  “Not only is it good for the spirit, but it also creates harmony in the community.”

YouTube links or questions can be sent to youth@niagarajazzfestival.com.

Featuring 40 acts and 150 artists and performers, the TD Niagara Jazz Festival takes place July 29th to 31st at 15 venues across Niagara. Tickets are now on sale! Visit niagarajazzfestival.com for tickets, weekend passes and packages. Join the TD Niagara Jazz Festival on Facebook, Follow it on Twitter @jazzniagara and share some pictures on Instagram @theniagarajazzfestival.

About the TD Niagara Jazz Festival:

Now in its third year, the TD Niagara Jazz Festival is a cutting edge three-day celebration of all types of jazz, performed in intimate indoor and outdoor venues in the heart of Niagara’s stunning wine country. Presenting the finest Canadian and internationally-acclaimed jazz musicians by way of spectacular concerts, wine, craft beer and culinary packages — and free performances throughout select locations across Niagara. Launched in 2014, more than 3,000 people attended the inaugural three-day TD Niagara Jazz Festival featuring 20 bands, more than 70 musicians and seven venues.

The TD Niagara Jazz Festival is generously supported in part by: