For Immediate Release March 28, 2019
The Orangeville Blues and Jazz Festival announced today details about the 17th annual Festival taking place this year from May 31st to June 2nd in downtown Orangeville.
Josh Leitch, President of the Festival Board of Directors, and Larry Kurtz, Festival Founder and Artistic Director, welcomed an enthusiastic crowd of Festival insiders and supporters at the annual Festival Launch Event at Mill Creek Pub in Orangeville.
Festival President Josh Leitch said, “On behalf of the Festival and our thousands of attendees and hundreds of volunteers, we are deeply grateful for the funding and services that are generously provided to support the Festival. This Festival has become a signature event for Orangeville and the Dufferin region, and we would like to thank our partners, sponsors and funders for their tremendous support, particularly the Orangeville Business Improvement Association as a major partner with the Festival. We would like to also acknowledge the financial support from Heritage Canada in helping to showcase our outstanding local performers, which has become such an important part of the Festival’s programming. We would also like to thank the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the County of Dufferin and particularly the Town of Orangeville for their outstanding support. We were very pleased to be recognized once again as one of the Top 100 festivals and events in Ontario for 2019 by Festivals & Events Ontario. This is our eighth year to receive this award and it is a great honor for our Festival to be recognized among some of the very best festivals and events in Ontario! “
The Festival would like to acknowledge the support from Central Counties Tourism who has partnered with the Festival again to help promote the Festival and the region as a cultural tourism destination. “As one of Ontario’s 13 Regional Tourism Organizations, Central Counties Tourism works to support and elevate the very best that York, Durham and Headwaters has to offer”, said Chuck Thibeault, Executive Director of Central Counties Tourism. “The Orangeville Blues and Jazz Festival is one of Headwaters’ and Central Counties’ premier events, drawing tens of thousands of visitors each year. They continually evolve and grow to stay relevant and attract new audiences. Central Counties is proud to be a partner with the 2019 Festival.”
The Treasurer and Board Member of the Orangeville Business Improvement Association, Joe Sammut said “I am pleased to announce on behalf of the members of the Orangeville Business Improvement Association that we will be providing $35,000 in funding to the Orangeville Blues and Jazz Festival for this year’s event. As one of the Festival’s largest contributors over the last eleven years, Downtown Orangeville’s businesses and merchants welcome the economic activity this important Festival brings to our local business community. Our members consider this event to be the number one attraction for visitors in the area.”
The Mayor of the Town of Orangeville made the official proclamation that May 31st to June 2nd, 2019 is the 17th Annual Orangeville Blues & Jazz Festival weekend. The Mayor noted “Congratulations to the Orangeville Blues and Jazz Festival on its continuing legacy of providing the most exciting weekend of the year to residents of Orangeville & Southern Dufferin County. The Blues and Jazz Festival continues to grow and foster the love of music to all who attend. The festival is at the heart of the cultural soul of our Town – a place where music, theatre and art are revered and supported. Our Town Council and residents give our heartfelt thanks to all of the hundreds of volunteers who collaborate with Town Staff, our various Town Departments and the many generous sponsors to make this one of the greatest festivals in Ontario!”
In announcing this year’s outstanding line-up of performers, Festival Founder and Artistic Director, Larry Kurtz, stated “We are excited to announce the Festival will take place from May 31st to June 2nd in downtown Orangeville and will feature over 9O ACTS on 4 STAGES and in local pubs, restaurants and event venues with several pop-up Bands performing on Broadway”.
The 17th Annual Orangeville Blues & Jazz Festival kicks off on Friday night at 5PM with the extremely popular Blues Cruise, sponsored by Dairy Queen, and MacMaster Buick GMC and Orangeville Chrysler. The Blues Cruise features over 300 classic cars and 10 bands performing on Broadway including Al Lerman, Danny Marks, Alan Gerber and Gavin McLeod.
The Main Stage will feature Larry Kurtz & The Lawbreakers with special guest Heather Katz going on stage at 8PM on Friday night followed by an amazing eleven-piece soul band from Ottawa, The Commotions.
Throughout the entire weekend there will be live music featured in over 20 clubs, restaurants and event venues around town as part of the Festival experience.
On Saturday, starting with the Orangeville Business Improvement Area’s (OBIA) Farmers Market running from 8AM to 1PM, the Broadway Ramble will be closed to vehicle traffic and will provide a pedestrian friendly festival environment with over 10 bands performing in various outdoor locations on the street. In addition, this year will mark the introduction of a Festival Kid Zone as part of the Broadway Ramble and will feature several family-friendly workshops and programs such as harmonica lessons, a photo booth, music art activities outside of Maggiolly Art, drum circle, coloring station and more.
The festival also features plenty of great local talent performing in the TD Local Stars Tent on Saturday and Sunday such as the ODSS Jazz Band, Stan Chang, Campfire Poets, Orangeville Chorus, Travelling Wannabes, Jazz Society Band, and Soul Collective.
Special workshops will be offered in the Orangeville Public Library featuring Songwriting, Saxophone and Boogie Woogie Piano.
The Main Stage located in Alexandra Park will feature an outstanding line-up of award-winning artists starting at 2PM including rising star Angelique Francis, Juno award winners Digging Roots, vocal powerhouse Erin McCallum, Maple Blues Award nominated Jon Knight & Soulstack, the electrifying Miss Emily, and back by popular demand closing out the evening, will be award winning Australian harmonica and didgeridoo player Harper & Midwest Kind.
On Sunday, the Main Stage schedule will begin at noon until 6PM with performances by Maple Blues Award winners Murray Kinsley & Wicked Grin, Toronto Blues Society new talent search winners The Byward Blues Band, two-time Juno winner Steve Strongman and multi Maple Blues award winner Sue Foley will close the festival.
The Opera House series, sponsored by Mortgage Architects and Orangeville Insurance Services will begin at noon on Saturday and the line-up will include Cobalt Prize winner Joe Nolan, two- time Juno nominee Jason Wilson, an extremely rare appearance by Halifax’s incredible Garrett Mason, and will be headlined by 2019 Juno Winner for Vocal Jazz Album of the year Laila Biali Sunday in the Opera House will feature Orangeville’s own very popular Leisa Way & The Wayward Wind Band, from Budapest Hungary, Memphis Blues Challenge winner Little G Weevil, and headlined by the award-winning Cuban pianist and composer Hilario Duran.
The increasingly popular Blues & Bikes event on Broadway, sponsored by Barrie Harley-Davidson has been moved to Sunday (from Saturday) from 1PM to 5PM and will feature an expanded area to facilitate even more motorcycle enthusiasts. In addition to the incredible collection of motorcycles will be pop-up music performances taking place on the street.
For more information about the Festival, including a detailed schedule of activities and performers, please visit orangevillebluesandjazz.ca
For Festival Interviews contact:
Larry Kurtz – Festival Founder & Artistic Director firstname.lastname@example.org or 519.217.7875
Josh Leitch– President, Festival Board of Directors, email@example.com or 519,942.2937