Previous events

Vibraphonist Warren Chiasson

Cape Breton University Boardmore Theatre, Grand Lake Road, Sydney, Cape Breton

Vibraphonist Warren Chiasson is formerly from Cape Breton but has played jazz in New York for the past 50 years. Warren is recognized as one of the top jazz vibraphone players in the world. He will be joined on stage by Fabio Miano on piano, Jamie Gatti on bass, Ethan Ardelli on drums, and Mark Adam on congas. This show is dedicated to the memory of Heather Osler, of Glace Bay, formerly from New York. Heather was a generous patron of the jazz festival. She passed away in the spring of 2019. Tickets are $40 advance or $45 at door, the evening of the show. Advance tickets can be purchased here online, or in person at the Gallery Ledrew 331 Charlotte Street Sydney, Nova Scotia B1P 1E1. Phone: (902) 500-0620

Late Night Shows for Cape Breton Jazz Festival

Governor's Pub, Esplanada St., Sydney, Nova Scotia

Admission $10 for three hours of late night music featuring of the Festival's finest musicians taking part in a jam session performance. Stop by and take the show in. You may be surprised at various performers who will take part. Admission at door only for this event. No advance sales.

Kirk MacDonald Quartet

Cape Breton University Boardmore Theatre, Grand Lake Road, Sydney, Cape Breton

Kirk MacDonald is a former Cape Bretoner now living in Toronto , and is one of top jazz tenor saxophone players in Canada. He will be joined on stage with his quartet of Fabio Miano on piano, Jamie Gatti on bass, and Ethan Ardelli on drums. Tickets are $40 advance or $45 at door, the evening of the show. Advance tickets can be purchased here online, or in person at the Gallery Ledrew 331 Charlotte Street Sydney, Nova Scotia B1P 1E1. Phone: (902) 500-0620

Jazz Festival Celebration Jam

Cape Breton University Boardmore Theatre, Grand Lake Road, Sydney, Cape Breton

Jazz Festival Celebration Jam will consist of a blending of various players into a combination of combos. Some of the players participating will clarinetist Virginia MacDonald, Lucien Gray, Fabio Miano of Spain, Ethan Ardelli, Kirk MacDonald, and others. Tickets are $30 advance or $35 at door, the evening of the show. Advance tickets can be purchased here online, or in person at the Gallery Ledrew 331 Charlotte Street Sydney, Nova Scotia B1P 1E1. Phone: (902) 500-0620

Ethan Ardelli Quartet from Toronto

At Hearthstone Inn in Commoner's Courtyard, 560 Kings Rd, Sydney, Cape Breton

The Ethan Ardelli Quartet from Toronto. Joining Ethan on stage for a show a hard hitting jazz classics plus original tunes will be Luiz Deniz on alto saxophone, Chris Donnelly on piano, Devon Henderson on bass, and Ethan on drums. Opening for Ethan's stellar jazz quartet, will be the Carl Getto Jazz Group, featuring vocalists Janet Bickerton, Shelley Allen, and Shirley Dalton, singing well known songs from the American Classic Jazz Songbook. Remember this is an open air event so bring a sweater. If weather is inclement, the event will be moved inside. Because of alcohol regulations, this event is 19 years and over. Tickets are $30 advance or $35 at door, the evening of the show. Advance tickets can be purchased here online, or in person at the Gallery Ledrew 331 Charlotte Street Sydney, Nova Scotia B1P 1E1. Phone: (902) 500-0620

Bill Stephenson Trio

At Hearthstone Inn in Commoner's Courtyard, 560 Kings Rd, Sydney, Cape Breton

Jazz Pianist Bill Stephenson and his trio with Tom Easley on bass and Geoff Arsenault on drums will highlight a great evening of Bill singing and playing blues and jazz classic tunes. Opening for Bill Stephenson, will be the Carl Getto Jazz Group, featuring vocalists Janet Bickerton, Jo-Anne Rolls, and Linda Muise, singing well known songs from the American Classic Jazz Songbook. Remember this is an open air event so bring a sweater. If weather is inclement, the event will be moved inside. Because of alcohol regulations, this event is 19 years and over. Tickets are $30 advance or $35 at door, the evening of the show. Advance tickets can be purchased here online, or in person at the Gallery Ledrew 331 Charlotte Street Sydney, Nova Scotia B1P 1E1. Phone: (902) 500-0620

Cape Breton Jazz Festival Opening Night

At Hearthstone Inn in Commoner's Courtyard, 560 Kings Rd, Sydney, Cape Breton

The opening night gala in the outdoor court brings together several music performances for an evening of great entertainment. The show will open with Michele Stephen on piano and vocals, accompanied by Red Mike MacDonald and Ron Leadbeater. Marcel Amores and Plan Ashe, as well as Kevin Colford and Steppin' Out are scheduled to participate in this celebratory opening show. Remember the is outdoors so keep a sweater close by. In case of inclement weather the event will be moved inside. Because of alcohol regulations, this event is an 19 years and over. Tickets are $30 advance or $35 at door, the evening of the show. Advance tickets can be purchased here online, or in person at the Gallery Ledrew 331 Charlotte Street Sydney, Nova Scotia B1P 1E1. Phone: (902) 500-0620

Juno Award winner saxophonist Kirk MacDonald with Special Guests

Joan Harris Cruise Pavilion Big Fiddle, Esplanade, Sydney

Juno Award winner saxophonist Kirk MacDonald of Toronto will highlight the evening along with ECMA award winner trumpet player Paul Tynan of Antigonish who will lead an of hot and cool jazz backed by a rhythm section of some of Cape Breton's top players. Opening the show will be clarinet player Virginia MacDonald and guitar player Lucian Gray.

The Booty Boppin' Brass Band

Sydney Waterfront, Near the Big Fiddle , Sydney, Nova Scotia

Led by Halifax Trumpet player and vocalist Mike Cowie with a selection of some of Atlantic Canada's top jazz players, this high energy band includes: Rick Waychesko on trumpet, Martin Davidson on tenor sax, Dan Martin on trombone and vocals, Pierre Devillers on Tuba, and Dave Burton on drums. The group will have people dancing in the aisles.

The Booty Boppin' Brass Band plays blues based high energy music with driving 2nd line, Funk, Hip Hop and Latin beats. The BBBB is about impossible horn arrangements, a Sousaphone that doesn't stop and fun vocals.

The Booty Boppin’ Brass Band gets our audience singing, stomping, and playing percussion on stage with us - we also feature some cool choreography and audience march throughs.

The BBBB was featured on the main stage at The 2016 Halifax Jazz Festival with Preservation Hall. In 2017 the band is featured 5 times on the CBC stage during the Halifax Tall Ships Festival.

New York Stories: Jazz crooner Micah Barnes and acclaimed pianist Holly Arsenault

Joan Harris Cruise Pavilion, 60 Esplanade, Sydney, Nova Scotia

“New York Stories” takes audiences on a musical tour of The Big Apple starting uptown at The Apollo Theatre and The Cotton Club and moving midtown to Times Square & Broadway before landing downtown at legendary Jazz Clubs such as Birdland and The Blue Note in The Village!   

Canadian Jazz crooner, Micah Barnes and critically acclaimed Jazz Pianist Holly Arsenault will be performing classic songs from legendary New York songwriters like Irving Berlin, George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Fats Waller, Duke Ellington, Carole King & Burt Bacharach, as well as material from Micah’s critically acclaimed album “New York Stories” (eOne Music) which he and Holly are touring the Atlantic provinces with! 

Don’t miss the chance to spend an evening in Manhattan! 

Micahbarnes.com   Hollyarsenaultmusic.com 

Jazz Fest Celebration Featuring Lots of Local Performers

Joan Harris Cruise Pavilion, 60 Esplanade, Sydney, Nova Scotia

Some of the local jazz performers expected to be on stage include saxophone players Russell LeBlanc, Bruce McKinley, and Matt Nicholson. Along with guitar players Doug Johnson, Scott Rodney, and Chris McDonald, drummers Ethan Ardelli, and Johnny Hawkins, and vocalist Debbie Keating. and others.

Outside the Jazz Box: Dwayne Cote and Jason MacDonald; Also Crowdis Bridge, Jordan Musycsyn

Joan Harris Cruise Pavilion, 60 Esplanade , Sydney, Nova Scotia

The word jazz is often unclear. This year the Cape Breton Jazz Festival presents music which often has been considered as 'outside the jazz box'. Outstanding Cape Breton Fiddler Dwayne Cote and guitarist Jason MacDonald will heat the audience up with their energetic playing. As a further treat, the Cape Breton group Crowds Bridge and solo musician Jordan Musycsyn will showcase their talents during this fun evening.

Blues with the Whiskysmoke Blues Band

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Outdoor Beer Garden Show in Membertou, Membertou Trade and Convention Centre, Membertou, Nova Scotia

Fill up your evening with Blues music which begins at 8 pm and continues until midnight. Theresa Malenfant and Scott Medford will open the evening followed by the Whiskeysmoke Blues Band. This event is presented as a partnership between The 'Ride for the Cure', in conjunction with the Cape Breton Bike Rally, and the Cape Breton Jazz Festival.