Hear from both local jazz veterans and international talents

No stranger to bringing folks from all walks of life together through good tunes, local arts venue Esplanade will once again return with its annual Jazz in July music festival, wholly online to be in accordance with the Covid-19 social distancing measures. Get excited for actual live performances, something the centre hasn’t been able to conduct since its temporary closure in April earlier this year.

Happening from Jul 8-31, the month-long series will spotlight the jazz genre with talks, jam sessions and listening parties. And instead of trying to be larger than life, the 2020 festival goes intimate with duets that focuses on music and friendship.

There’ll be a total of 24 unique pairings of 43 jazz artists based in Singapore, including Cultural Medallion recipient Louis Soliano, veteran jazz vocalists Rani Singam and Alemay Fernandez as well as pianists Aya Sekine and Chok Kerong.

First, chase your blues away with uplifting, rhythmic interpretations of a collection of compositions by Sonny Stitt, John Coltrane, Dinah Washington and more thanks to the dynamic duo that is Lester Ang and Chok Kerong (Jul 15).

Next, listen to melodies by Japanese pianist Aya Sekine and Singapore drummer Aaron James Lee (Jul 16) as they join forces to present an experimental performance of original material as well as jazz classics.

Finally, be blown away by Mario Lopez and Duncan McKee, as the two will share their love for jazz with audiences by offering both jazz staples and original compositions. After all, we wouldn’t expect anything less from this remarkable pair which have played together for a whopping 20 years.

But don’t forget to get engaged with fun videos and discussions on the Esplanade Offstage microsite before and after the live streams on both Facebook and the dedicated platform; The Jazz Cat Diaries: Jeremy Monteiro and Rick Smith will provide insights on the growth of the local jazz scene, while Can you talk the (jazz) talk? will quiz you on jargon pertaining to the music style.

With so much flair and musical fun available on the Esplanade’s platforms, join the local veterans and promising new talents in exploring the roots of jazz and everything it has to offer.


Jazz in July 2020 runs from Jul 8-31 on Esplanade Offstage and the Esplanade Facebook page.