Roman City International Summer Jazz Festival
Since 1981, the historic Roman City of Vienne has hosted this wonderful music festival on the banks of the Rhone River just 30 km south of Lyon. With a line-up of internationally acclaimed artists and many concerts for children this is truly a festival for everyone.
The gorgeous and mystical ancient Roman amphitheatre of Vienne is one of the most stunning music venues in Europe. Previous years have seen some of the great names from the world of jazz and blues including Miles Davis, Stan Getz, Claude Challe, Michel Petrucciani, Ella Fitzgerald, Sonny Rollins, Lionel Hampton, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Chuck Berry and Ike Turner.
One of the best evenings I’ve ever spent in France was an opening night of Vienne’s Jazz Festival. Philippe Barbour
Music in a Roman amphitheatre among the vineyards
Lasting a glorious 15 days over the summer, the city of Vienne lying at the gateway to the vineyards of the Cote du Rhone becomes a vibrant place, pulsating to the sounds of jazz, but not only jazz. The festival includes good portions of soul, funk, blues, R&B, electro, folk, hip hop and world music.
There is a smaller daytime stage and two late night venues for some after hours jazz open until the early hours and a host of other activities such as projections, conferences and workshops covering everything from gospel singing to yoga with jazz.
There are film screenings, exhibitions of photography, book readings and much more.
The Guardian’s Philippe Barbour reportedly spent his best night in France at Jazz at Vienne :
I already had a soft spot for this ancient bruiser of a town that guards the first Côtes du Rhône vineyards south of Lyon. As dusk fell over the valley, its Roman theatre filled with a brilliant mosaic of outfits. Then the instruments took off. It was the musical equivalent of watching swallows at sunset, only the scene continued late into the night”.
Simply an amazing festival and with 15 days to choose from you’d be silly to not go for at least one day!
It’s great for all ages, especially families with kids.
When is Jazz à Vienne 2017?
From June 29 to July 13 in Vienne