This May bank holiday weekend can only mean one thing – the City of Derry Jazz and Big Band Festival is back, and at the Chamber, we can’t wait!

Now in its 23rd year, the event attracts tens of thousands of revellers, and most of the events are free, ensuring live music and quality performances are accessible for everyone.

Jazz Festival Coordinator with Derry City and Strabane Council, Andrea Campbell, said:

“It’s all happening as we put the final preparations in place for this year’s event. The flights are booked, the programme is ready, and the stage is almost set for the 23rd outing of the jazz festival. We have some fantastic new acts featuring this year and we’re looking forward to welcoming back our regulars who have a dedicated fanbase here. We are also delighted to work with Ulster University as a sponsor for this year’s event.’

“The festival footprint extends right across the city and the event is vital to the local economy, with concerts, workshops, and al fresco performances taking place in numerous venues. Where else would you get to enjoy such a wide variety of free entertainment, with something to suit all ages?”

A key priority for the festival is its outreach programme involving local young people and providing opportunities for new talent to develop. Over 1,200 pupils from eight schools will this year enjoy a fun introduction to jazz through the interactive ‘Jazz Lab’ sessions featuring familiar jazz standards and improvisation techniques. Watch out for the next generation of jazz talent, as they take to the stage throughout the festival weekend.

The Chamber recognises the festival as one of the City’s key events in driving footfall on our streets, and with all the challenges businesses face at the moment, the City of Derry Jazz and Big Band Festival is a welcome boost for all of our members, particularly for those in the hospitality sector.  

With accommodation always in high demand, for the first time the festival is this year offering a dedicated parking facility for camper vans, located right at the heart of all the action. Spaces are available at Bishop Street Carpark, just a stone’s throw from the city centre venues.

Early booking is advised for all accommodation and visitors should check out the options on the Visit Derry website –

Motor home parking can be booked at

Details of this year’s Jazz Festival programme can be found at