All That Jazz


The Cambridge Jazz festival returns for another year of smooth music. 

Back for its fourth year, Cambridge International Jazz Festival features a huge, wide-ranging selection of acts to savour.

Opening the festival will be vocalists Liane Carroll and Ian Shaw – with four BBC Jazz Awards between them – supported by the London Gay Big Band at Junction 2 on 13 November, while the closing night star turn comes from vocalist and composer Madeleine Peyroux, at the Corn Exchange on 27 November.

Artistic director Roslin Russell is looking forward to the celebration of all things jazz. “Every year we celebrate jazz and this year we go further to celebrate women in jazz, global connections in jazz and tributes to the masters of jazz.”

She said the festival would continue its mission to “advocate and celebrate talent and excellence in jazz. Whether it’s established masters, or rising talent or the London jazz scene, there is a place for everyone in the year’s programme”.


From gypsy jazz with award-winning Dutch violinist Tim Kliphuis, drum ’n’ bass inspired jazz from drummer and producer Richard Spaven, Kit Downes’ church organ sounds to raise spirits and soothe souls to family-friendly shows with Groove into Space, featuring the Brass Funkeys, there truly is something for everyone.

“Within a fortnight Cambridge will host more than 60 events, with 72 artists, 428 musicians and thousands of audience members. One of the key themes that we have been developing over the past few years is both the contribution and leadership of women in jazz.

“From headliners to debutants, concerts to workshops, this year’s programme is a proud celebration of the creativity that female artists have given to jazz,” said Russell.

The events take place across numerous venues in and around Cambridge. And, as well as gigs, there will be several talks, films and workshops too.

Full details can be found on the festival website


Yazmin Lacey

14 November  Portland Arms

Yazmin sings with the clarity of classic soul. She began to play acoustic shows in 2014 and has been described by 6 Music’s Gilles Petersen as a “brilliant singer/songwriter and great new name for the UK”.

Tony Kofi and the Organisation

15 November  Hidden Rooms

After starting out in the Jazz Warriors in the early 90s, Tony is an established leading musician, composer and teacher. His fluent, fiery hard-bop style means he’s constantly in demand.

Richard Spaven Trio

15 November  La Raza

Using broken beat, dubstep and drum ‘n’ bass, Spaven’s acclaimed album The Self explores and defies genres. He’s also drummed for many artists live and in the studio.

Orphy Robinson presents Van Morrison’s Astral Weeks

16 November  Saffron Hall

The Jazz FM Live Experience of the Year award-winner presents his interpretation of this classic album, 50 years after its release.

Alec Dankworth Spanish Accents

16 November  Stapleford Granary

A heady mix of top British musicians join bassist Alec Dankworth, vocalist Emily Dankworth and Jesus Olmedo providing flamenco dexterity.

Vanessa Haynes celebrates Aretha Franklin

16 November  Emmanuel United Reformed Church

Haynes and her band present a retrospective of classics for this special festival tribute that celebrates the life of the late and legendary Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin.

Yazz Ahmed

18 November  West Road Concert Hall

Playing standards and new tunes at the festival, Ahmed (who plays trumpet and flugelhorn) has performed, recorded or toured with Radiohead, These New Puritans, Manic Street Preachers and Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry.


21 November  Museum of Zoology 

Mercury prize-nominated Dinosaur play colourful new music that’s full of imagination and surprise, led by trumpeter Laura Jurd. Expect synth-pop meets jazz, with folk-infused grooves and glistening melodies.

Myles Sanko

22 November   Junction 1

UK singer Sanko has been described as the “Lovechild of soul music”. His new album Forever Dreaming has a vintage feel, with a contemporary twist.

Madeleine Peyroux

27 November  Cambridge Corn Exchange

Her latest work Secular Hymns produced a mix of funk, blues and jazz, capturing the live vibe of her trio that’s been together for the last two years.