Thank you + some news

The Saskatchewan Jazz Festival is so grateful for another amazing year. Though there were (many!) unanticipated challenges, this year was another success. We had more than 50 live attendees, and over 30,000 people join us. We met the restraints of this year with vigour, and used these limitations as a way to showcase exceptional local talent. Your support and contributions helped us make this unique year a success — thank you!

The Saskatchewan Jazz Festival is so grateful for another amazing year. Thank you, Saskatoon for all you do to make our festival a success, even in the most challenging of times. This year’s festival was no exception. We have some big news to tack onto the success of this year. 

After nearly two decades with the festival, our Artistic Director Kevin Tobin is leaving the Saskatchewan Jazz Festival. Though we are sad to lose Kevin, we are so excited for him to experience the next piece of his music journey. Under Kevin’s leadership, the festival has grown immensely. The first festival took place in Saskatoon during the summer of 1987. Today it has become the second-largest festival of its kind in Western Canada. We’ve attracted international talent and given local artists a place to grow, transitioning from an unknown to a unique destination. We wish Kevin all the best on the next leg of his journey. He has given so much to us over the years, and we know he will continue to excel wherever he lands. 

As for us, we’re excited to see what’s next. The music scene has grown exponentially over the past many years, and the past two years have brought new challenges and opportunities. We are passionately pursuing our vision: to create enjoyable opportunities of involvement with jazz and its diverse forms to the people of Saskatchewan with an internationally recognized festival that is revered for its high-quality performances, deep economic and cultural impact, sense of community ownership and deep cultural impact. 

Keep your ears to the ground — we’ll be looking to fill Kevin’s shoes with a visionary leader soon! Someone who is passionate about music, experienced in the industry, and leads by example. This person will be essential in evolving the organization year-round within the community we serve and reimagining and lifting to new heights the Saskatchewan Jazz Festival.

If you have questions or want to talk about the recent changes, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me at any time. Myself and the rest of the board are eager to bridge the gap between artistic leadership and excited to bring on board new talent.

Thank you Saskatoon and thank you, Kevin.

Shawna Nelson