presented by the University of Iowa Community Credit Union
Come down for a three-day weekend of live Jazz performances, delicious dishes, and cap off the weekend with a full blown fireworks display over the University of Iowa's Pentacrest lawn.
You're sure to enjoy the music from all four stages, which showcase a variety of well-known jazz musicians and up-and-coming talent alongside national and international artists to encourage and educate a jazz audience of all ages.
Bring a blanket, chair, or come sit in our beverage garden and get ready for a weekend Jazz extravaganza!
Since its humble beginnings in 1991 the Iowa City Jazz Festival has transformed into a nationally recognized event with an average annual audience of more than 50,000. Admission has always been free thanks to our sponsors who underwrite all costs of producing the event, allowing it to transcend socioeconomic barriers and provide free access to families and individuals regardless of income.
From the beginning, the principal goal of the festival has been to present impressive level of musicianship. Each year the audience is treated to some of the very best jazz performers in the world. The festivals often feature cutting-edge musicians who have been cited top performers by their peers. From the Grammy-winning Neville Brothers, Poncho Sanchez, Paquito D’Rivera, Joe Lovano, and Yellowjackets, to Grammy-nominees John Scofield, Bill Frisell, Kenny Werner, Greg Osby and Brad Mehldau, the festival has brought some of the world's most influential talent to its stage.
A vital component of the festival is the focus on jazz education. Each year, the festival creates educational opportunities for students and aficionados through its Keyhole program. Young musicians from schools around the area are invited to perform at the festival and learn from such noted educators like Ron Carter, T.S. Monk, Jr., Ed Wilkerson, Kenny Werner, Paul McKee, Curtis Fuller, Geri Allen, David Berkman, and Dick Oatts in a focused and effective workshop setting. The festival has gained recognition as a supporter of local youth jazz groups by collaborating with both the Iowa City and West High jazz bands, featured openers at past festivals.
There are few things the Iowa City locals enjoy more than the FREE annual Iowa City Jazz Festival every summer! The rest of America agrees; the festival is recognized as one of the top ten Jazz Fests in the US, and spans four blocks of downtown Iowa City.
Locals love hearing new music from up and coming artists like Ambrose Akinmusire, and also hearing the great jazz legends like Dr. Lonnie Smith and Charles Lloyd.
Locals can explore, experience and enjoy not only some of the greatest jazz, but enticing foods, children’s activities, after- hours jam sessions at local clubs, and family friendly activities.