Halls Gap Jazz and Blues Festival is back

The Halls Gap Jazz and Blues festival is set to rock the town this October with a wide variety of jazz genres and a mixed show of entertainment. 

  • An earlier version of this story incorrectly said the festival would move to Port Fairy in 2017. The festival will remain in Halls Gap.

This year’s festival will be held on October 21, 22 and 23 instead of February to avoid the heat of summer.

Festival committee member Don Calvert said the change is a strategic move to protect musicians and festival goers.

“It was a change that caused a lot of angst but it is a huge cost to set up the festival, acquire musicians and hire marquees during the summer,” he said.

“If there was a code red and a need to evacuate, people would be at risk and a lot of cost would not be recovered.”

Mr Calvert said the response this year has been overwhelming and is excited to showcase a mixed piece of entertainment this year.

“There will be a variety of jazz genres such as traditional, blues, swing and American songbook and theatrical and comedy musicals.”

The festival is also promising a more intimate affair than in the past with over 60 bands and performances spread across seven venues.

Nominated venues are Hall, Hub, Pinnacle, Mountain Grand, Comfort Inn, Spirit of Punjab and Kookaburra Hotel. If numbers are solid then a main Marquee will be considered.

Mr Calvert said bands will be coming from all over the country.

“Many popular bands from previous festivals will be returning and we are looking forward to public’s response once the whole list of bands are published shortly.”

Past festivals have attracted 5000 people for three nights to Halls Gap.

“This is a major event for Halls Gap and it has been for years, the same committee has been organising it for well over 30 years and we’re proud to say it’s the biggest festival in Halls Gap.

To ensure the viability of the event, organisers are encouraging the public to register & pay fees as early birds. 

Tickets are available on the day and can be purchased for a full weekend, per event or per day.

Prices start at $25 for adults. 

Mr Calvert said registration forms and information can be downloaded from www.hallsgapjazzblues.com.

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