It is with great sadness we announce that this year’s Manchester Jazz Festival is cancelled.

Along with the rest of the population, our hope is that the situation surrounding the current COVID-19 pandemic improves in the coming months. However it is too great a risk for our staff, artists and partners to embark on delivering large scale events across the city during the worst public health crisis in a generation.

Manchester Jazz Festival formed in 1996 and has now become the city’s longest-running music festival. Our very first festival was cancelled on the day due to the city centre bomb in Manchester, so it is a strange book end to the first quarter century of our history that this, our 25th anniversary, will also be cancelled.

We know this news will come as a disappointment and we’d like to reassure everyone that we will be back in 2021. Those who have bought tickets to this year’s festival will be entitled to a full refund and should contact the booking agent they used to make their original purchase.

In the meantime, we’ll be working on supporting all artists across the North West and beyond. Please stay tuned over the coming months as we switch our focus to digital projects, so we can continue celebrate the work of our extraordinary artists with our loyal audiences.

Some of our partner venues may continue with the festival events they had programmed between May 21 -25. Although these gigs will no longer be part of mjf2020, if they are able to continue we ask you to support these events where you can.

mjf Artistic Director Steve Mead, said: “It’s with a heavy heart that we’re forced to announce the cancellation of mjf 2020. The festival team has been working hard all year round towards this year’s event, and artists – our greatest asset – are now enduring a sudden downturn in their livelihoods.

“Although I won’t be there with you in person to share their inspiring music, we’re turning our attention to digital platforms to share some of their music with you instead. Music will keep our spirits high.”

The COVID-19 pandemic is a really worrying situation and we hope everyone is getting the support they need to stay happy and healthy.

We know the necessary cancellation of gigs, festivals and encouraged isolation is adding extra stress to artists and venues across the country.

We’ve put together some useful links of where you might be able to find up to date advice:

Statement from Arts Council England

Musician’s Union Advice
Health & Welfare Support from Help Musicians UK

Advice on Web Streaming
Advice from UK Music
BBC advice on working from home

Government advice on those affected financially by Coronavirus
Petition from Music Venues Trust
Music Minds Matter
Bandcamp waive revenue share
Tutti Resources for creatives

ISM (Incorporated Society of Musicians)


It’s official – mjf2020 is almost here!

The 25th Manchester Jazz Festival will take place from 21 – 25 May, and it’s set to be bigger and better than ever before.

We’ve announced the majority of the venues where you can catch this year’s special anniversary event.

Back by popular demand is The Whiskey Jar, where NQ Jazz will be running more gigs featuring the very best from the UK and International Jazz scene.

We’re excited to make a return to the iconic Band on the Wall for a weekender of big names and emerging artists, and free concerts.

Also returning as mjf venues are the RNCM for our popular series of larger concerts, and St Ann’s Church where audiences can catch more wonderful creations and one-off performances.

As always, Matt and Phreds are a staple of this year’s festival and they’ve packed more gigs in than ever before across the Bank Holiday Weekend.

We’ve also teamed up with HOME to bring you a series of jazz-themed films in the run up to the festival.

New to this year’s festival is The Stoller Hall, where we’ll be offering you the chance to see a big name in their state of the art building.

To check out all the venues in this year’s festival here.

We’ll be making more announcements on our festival hub and of course this year’s line up very soon. Make sure you never miss an announcement by signing up to our newsletter.