Now in its twenty-ninth year, the Wangaratta Festival of Jazz and Blues continues to deliver programming that is innovative, ambitious, and far-reaching. That a long-running Festival of this scale and significance takes place annually in a regional Victorian city says much about the tenacity and dedication of the Festival’s artistic team, its board, its many volunteers and supporters, and the general goodwill of the local townsfolk. There can be little doubt that the Festival has, over its near three-decade existence, helped shape the course of jazz in this country, whether via its commitment to showcasing ambitious new work by Australian composers, or staging large-scale performances beyond the scope of most jazz clubs and venues. Along the way, the Festival has delivered substantial audiences for this music and has nurtured several generations of Australian musicians via the National Jazz Awards.
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