Today, July 13th, the music is ready to resonate through the medieval streets of Perugia for the opening of the 45th edition of the Umbria Jazz Festival, which will continue until July 22nd.
Since the inauguration of its first edition on August 23rd, 1973, the festival has gone a long way and it is now the most important jazz festival in the world, and the fact that its program is executed in arenas, theaters, auditoriums, but also in the picturesque squares and streets of the city, adds to its charm. Since 2003, the most important concerts have been held at the Santa Giuliana arena, although there have been other stages, such as the Renato Curi stadium for Miles Davis and Sting, or Villa Fidelia in Spello for Eric Clapton in 1997. Other big names that performed ta Umbria Jazz in these years are Van Morrison, James Brown, Elton John, Carlos Santana, Donna Summer, Simply Red and B.B. King, with rock and blues digressions that increasingly accompanied the pure jazz program.
This year the official opening is entrusted in the iconic hands of Quincy Jones, who will perform tonight at the Santa Giuliana Arena. The same stage will host on the 16th the Massive Attack, the historic British band founder of the trip-hop genre; while the following day it will be the turn of the Chainsmokers, in the only Italian date of the American duo, and then on the 18th Somi and Benjamin Clementine, and the Brazilian group Os Mutantes on the 19th. On the 20th, David Byrne, the frontman of the Talking Heads, will be in Perugia, and on the 21st Mario Biondi, Nik West, and Hypnotic Brass Ensemble.The classical jazz program will be performed at the Morlacchi, and it will present among others, Roy Hargrove Quintet, Kurt Elling Quintet with Marquis Hill, Billy Hart Quartet with Joshua Redman, Paolo Fresu Devil Quartet, Igor Butman & Moscow Jazz Orchestra, Sergio Cammariere Quintet, Mingus Big Band, and Roberto Gatto. The live shows will be divided into different time slots with afternoon, evening and night concerts.
Moreover, as for all the editions, the whole of Perugia will become a widespread stage, with free concerts in Piazza IV Novembre and at the Carducci gardens, while in the historic center there will be daily street parades. Also, concert-aperitives are in the program at Umbrò and jam sessions at the Cesarino restaurant.
Ilona Catani Scarlett