Founded in 1954, the Newport Jazz Festival® was the first annual jazz festival in America. It has been host to numerous legendary performances by some of the world's leading established and emerging artists. Referred to as “the grandfather of all jazz festivals,” the event draws thousands of people from all over the world to Newport, Rhode Island, a city that is famed for its spectacular coastal scenery and awe-inspiring architecture.
Historic moments since its inception include performances by Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie, Frank Sinatra, Thelonious Monk, John Coltrane, Dave Brubeck, Miles Davis, Harry Connick, Jr., Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Diana Krall, Esperanza Spalding, Hiromi, Gregory Porter and numerous others.
George Wein, the impresario who went on to found numerous festivals worldwide including the JVC Jazz Festival, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and the Newport Folk Festival, created the festival after Louis and Elaine Lorillard, jazz fans and frequent visitors to his Storyville jazz club in Boston's Copley Hotel, asked him to produce a jazz event in Newport to bring more excitement to the resort area's summer season.
In 2010, George Wein created the Newport Festivals Foundation, Inc., a 501(c)(3) organization that returns the Newport Jazz Festival® and Newport Folk Festival® to their roots as non-profit events, ensuring that the Festivals will be a part of Newport's, and the world’s, musical history in perpetuity.
The 60th Anniversary Newport Jazz Festival® will take place from Aug. 1-3, 2014 in Newport, RI. More information on the festival can be found at newportjazzfest.net
More information on the Newport Festivals Foundation, Inc. can be found at newportfestivalsfoundation.org
The Newport Jazz Festival®: Now 60 tour features an all-star band that will honor the festival’s rich heritage while celebrating it’s contemporary significance and the globalization of jazz today.