The Manly Jazz Festival is a lively and enchanting celebration of jazz music that annually graces the picturesque beachside suburb of Manly, Australia. With its mesmerizing live performances by both local talents and international jazz musicians, this festival has become a harmonious convergence of music, culture, and the idyllic coastal setting. In this article, we will delve into the festival’s history, location, mission, and some of its memorable moments.

The Manly Jazz Festival was founded in 1978, making it one of Australia’s longest-running jazz festivals. Initially a small-scale event, it has since grown in both size and reputation, attracting jazz enthusiasts and music lovers from near and far. Over the years, it has become an integral part of the vibrant cultural scene in Manly.

When and Where?

Manly, situated on the northern beaches of Sydney, is renowned for its pristine sandy beaches, inviting ocean waters, and a relaxed coastal atmosphere. The festival takes full advantage of this scenic backdrop, with multiple stages set up in and around Manly’s iconic Corso, foreshore parks, and beachside locations. The Manly Jazz Festival typically takes place over the October long weekend, offering a splendid opportunity to enjoy jazz music in the mild spring weather. This timing allows festivalgoers to relish the sounds of jazz while basking in the coastal charm of Manly.


Mission and Purpose

The Manly Jazz Festival has several core missions and purposes:

  1. Celebrating Jazz: The festival is dedicated to celebrating the rich and diverse genre of jazz music, showcasing its various styles, from traditional and contemporary to fusion and improvisational.
  2. Promoting Local and International Talent: It provides a platform for both emerging local jazz musicians and internationally acclaimed artists to showcase their talents, fostering cross-cultural exchange and appreciation.
  3. Enhancing the Cultural Experience: The festival aims to enhance the cultural experience of residents and visitors alike, creating an inclusive and vibrant atmosphere that encourages music appreciation.
  4. Community Engagement: By involving the local community in the festival’s activities and workshops, it fosters a sense of participation and belonging.

Past Highlights

Over the years, the festival has featured a captivating array of events, artists, and performances that have left a lasting impression on attendees. Some notable highlights include:

  1. World-Class Jazz Musicians: The festival has attracted renowned jazz musicians, such as James Morrison, Don Burrows, and Vince Jones, who have graced the stages with their remarkable performances.
  2. Varied Jazz Styles: Jazz lovers can enjoy an eclectic mix of jazz styles, including traditional jazz, swing, Latin jazz, and modern fusion, catering to a wide range of musical tastes.
  3. Outdoor Performances: Many of the festival’s stages are set up outdoors, allowing attendees to soak up the sun, sea breeze, and music simultaneously.
  4. Street Performers: Manly’s Corso comes alive with street performers, creating a lively and festive atmosphere that adds to the overall experience.

For the latest updates and information about the Manly Jazz Festival, please visit the official website and Facebook page: