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DC Jazz Festival line up includes top artists

By Kelly-Ann BrownHoward University News Service
On June 15, 2015
Esperanza Spalding

This year the DC Jazz Festival will feature Esperanza Spalding (pictured), Femi Kuti, Joshua Redman and Common and more.
Credit: Ben Alman/Creative Commons

WASHINGTON -- DC Jazz Festival celebrates its 10th anniversary this year with over 125 performances across more than 60 venues throughout the Washington area. The festivities run June 10 to June 16 and aid in the DC Jazz Festival’s mission to diversify the jazz audience and expand its following. 

The festival lineup will feature the musical styling of a variety of artists, including the Afrohorn sextet, The Bad trio plus renowned saxophonist Joshua Redman, the Charlie Hunter Trio, Academy Award-winning rapper Common, the seven-member Cookers band and bassist/singer/composer sensation Esperanza Spalding as well as up and coming talent. 

Since its inception, the festival has sought to provide, “enriching and entertaining jazz performances and programs that introduce students and adults from all walks of life to jazz, our nation’s singular original art form,” according to its organizers.

The festival also offers “pay-as-you-can” and free performances throughout the week as part of one its major features, Jazz in the ‘Hoods. 

In its fifth consecutive year, this series partners with varies venues throughout Washington -- from local clubs to galleries to bring the musical influences of jazz to communities that might not otherwise have the exposure. 

This is especially true for the East River JazzFest, which caters specifically to residents of Ward 7 and Ward 8, both east of the Anacostia River, where performances will be held at local libraries and senior wellness centers. 

Other festival programs include DC JazzFest at the Yards June 12 and 13 in Yards Park at Capital Riverfront, DC JazzFest at the Hamilton hotel from June 10 to 16 and the Capital Bop DC Jazz Loft Series from June 11 to 13. 

The festival also features an education component through its Roberta Flack Education Program. One is Jazz for a Healthier Generation, which uses the genre to promote a healthier lifestyle and encouragement for the ill.  Another is Jazzin’ at Sitar, “a year-round weekly instrument and jazz history sessions for Sitar music students,” according to dcjazzfest.org. For more information on DC Jazz Festival, including event schedules and artist biographies, visit the official its website, www.dcjazzfest.org  

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