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Detroit Jazz Festival Announces 2020 Lineup

Detroit Jazz Festival Announces 2020 Lineup

Performers Include Herbie Hancock, Pharoah Sanders,
Gregory Porter, Abdullah Ibrahim, Omar Sosa and
Marialy Pacheco, and Kenny Barron, Among Others

2020 Artist-In-Residence Dee Dee Bridgewater to Perform
with Woodshed Network Ladies, Kurt Elling’s Big Blind,
in Duo with Bill Charlap, and Her All Female Big Band

In keeping with a tradition of presenting true jazz artists and presentations that define its renowned jazz reputation and legacy across the globe, the Detroit Jazz Festival today announced its 2020 lineup for Labor Day weekend.

Previously announced, Grammy and Tony-award winning jazz vocalist Dee Dee Bridgewater will serve as the Festival’s Artist-in-Residence. The Detroit Jazz Festival is the world’s largest (and best) free jazz festival in the world.

“True to our mission, the Detroit Jazz Festival provides a platform for emerging and legacy artists to present true jazz presentations to enthusiasts and fans across the world…this year is no exception,” said Detroit Jazz Festival Foundation President and Artistic Director Chris Collins. “This year’s festival will showcase a very dynamic group of artists from various disciplines and generations, representing our embedded mission to present multiple facets of jazz in one festival setting,” said Collins.

The 2020 Artist-in-Residence Dee Dee Bridgewater will headline multiple performances during the Festival including an opening set with protégé group, the Woodshed Network Ladies, and a closing night performance with her all-female big band. Other highlights include performances from Herbie Hancock, Pharoah Sanders, Gregory Porter, Abdullah Ibrahim, Omar Sosa and Marialy Pacheco, and Kurt Elling’s Big Blind in conjunction with Broadway legend Ben Vereen and others.

This year’s theme, The Road to the Festival, also kicks off a journey to the Festival’s 50-year celebration.

Here’s a partial listing of this year’s Festival lineup:

Friday, September 4:

  • 2020 Artist-in-Residence Dee Dee Bridgewater and the Woodshed Network Ladies
  • Herbie Hancock 

Saturday, September 5:

  • Matthew Whitaker Quartet
  • Kenny Barron Trio
  • Alicia Olatuja – “Intuition: Songs From The Minds of Women”
  • Etienne Charles – “Creole Soul”
  • David Binney Angeleno Quartet
  • Keyon Harrold presents Jazz and the Birth of Hip Hop with special guests Elzhi, Georgia Anne Muldrow and Chris “Daddy” Dave
  • Pharoah Sanders – “Icon”
  • The Summit: The Manhattan Transfer Meets Take 6
  • Kurt Elling’s Big Blind: featuring Kurt Elling, 2020 Artist-in-Residence Dee Dee Bridgewater, Broadway Legend Ben Vereen and others

 Sunday, September 6:

  • Michael Mayo Quartet
  • Roberto Fonseca – “YESUN”
  • Alfredo Rodriguez & Richard Bona Sextet
  • 2020 Artist-in-Residence Dee Dee Bridgewater and Bill Charlap
  • Abdullah Ibrahim and the Detroit Jazz Festival Orchestra
  • Anat Cohen Tentet with Musical Director Oded Lev-Ari
  • Sean Jones – “Dizzy Spellz”
  • The Dave Brubeck 100th Anniversary Tribute featuring the Brubeck Brothers, Jerry Bergonzi, the Detroit Jazz Festival Orchestra and Choir, and others
  • Fly Higher – Charlie Parker @ 100 with co-music directors Rudresh Mahanthappa & Terri Lyne Carrington
  • Gregory Porter

Monday, September 7:

  • Abdullah Ibrahim & Ekaya
  • Joey Alexander Trio
  • Jimmy Greene Quintet
  • Eddie Daniels and Bob James – Exploring New Worlds
  • Omar Sosa & Marialy Pacheco Piano Duo
  • Robert Glasper
  • 2020 Artist-in-Residence Dee Dee Bridgewater and her all-female big band

The full Festival schedule will be available as the event nears.

“There is no better place in the world for jazz than Labor Day weekend in Detroit,” said Gretchen Valade, chair of the Detroit Jazz Festival Foundation Board of Directors. “We’re truly excited for another great jazz festival and welcome our guests from around the world to our beautiful city.”

Also returning this year is “Detroit JAZZ Fest LIVE!” For just $20, Festival attendees and out-of-towners unable to make it to the Festival can livestream performances from all four stages, all four days via their smartphone, tablet or desktop. Additionally, the livestreaming services features select performances throughout the year from the Foundation’s year-round initiatives, Festival schedules, maps and more. Register for the livestream at

The Detroit Jazz Festival will be held in downtown Detroit on Sept. 4 – 7.

About the Detroit Jazz Festival Foundation

Under the leadership of President and Artistic Director Chris Collins, the Detroit Jazz Festival Foundation is an independent, non-profit organization that presents jazz and educational workshops throughout the year. The Foundation produces the Detroit Jazz Festival, which is the signature event for the Foundation and the largest free jazz festival in the world. The Festival is also a major tourist attraction for the City of Detroit, with 26 percent of its audience coming from out of state.

The Foundation receives grant funding from the Kresge Foundation, Fred A. and Barbara M. Erb Family Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, Arts Midwest, D’Addario Foundation and Carolyn Wanzo and the Purify Wanzo CTAA Endowment at Wayne State University. Hundreds of individuals also contribute to the Festival through membership and donations.

Major corporate partners include Quicken Loans, J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., DTE Foundation, Carhartt, Inc., Mack Avenue Music Group, Absopure, Dirty Dog Jazz Cafe and Comcast Cable. Additional partners include AARP, AMTECH International, Andiamo, Ascension Michigan, Bedrock Detroit, Bingham Legal Group, Blue Note at Sea, Central Michigan University, Cliff Bell’s, Creative Day Technologies, Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center, Display Group, Domino’s, Downtown Detroit Partnership, Element Detroit at the Metropolitan, Fifth Third Bank, George Johnson & Company, Giffels Webster, Grand Valley State University, Greektown Casino-Hotel, MGM Grand Detroit, Oakland University, Pepsi, Plante Moran, Rocket Fiber, SMART Bus, Schupan SustainAbility™, Steinway Piano Gallery of Detroit, Stella Artois, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Wayne State University and Woodward Gallery.

Media partners include Fox 2 DetroitWJR Newstalk 760 AMWEMU-FMDownBeatJazzTimesMetro TimesMichigan ChronicleWDET-FM 101.9WRCJ 90.9 FM and Detroit Public Television.

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