This weekend Nanaimo will be filled with the sound of jazz as the second annual Nanaimo International Jazz Festival comes to venues across the city.
The festival begins with a free concert at Diana Krall Plaza on Friday afternoon, climaxes with a headlining concert by the Charles Mingus Dynasty Quintet at the Port Theatre on Saturday night and the Victoria Jazz Orchestra brings the festival to a close at the Port on Sunday.
Monik Nordine, artistic director of the Victoria Jazz Orchestra and a former saxophone instructor at VIU, said her group will showcase the work of B.C. jazz composers.
“I kind of feel like we live on the outer edge of Canada,” Nordine said.
“It’s hard to get the kind of recognition here that people in Toronto can get really easily … so I feel as though we should play this music because who else is going to do it if we don’t?”
Among the VJO’s provincial repertoire are pieces by Nordine, Vancouver tenor saxophonist and pianist Ross Taggart and trombonist Ian McDougall of Victoria.
Members of the Mingus Dynasty Quintet will also perform with the VJO and Nordine said she has some Mingus-inspired material prepared as well, including Open Letter to Mingus by Vancouver composer and arranger Alan Matheson.
Click here for a full schedule of events and to purchase tickets.