Melbourne Int Jazz Festival announce iconic lineup: Chaka Khan, Nile Rogers & CHIC

Melbourne Int Jazz festival is bringing the crème de la crème of funk and soul, and we are so here for it.

After drooling over a certain Swiss Jazz festival line up recently, we are beyond stoked to have on our shores, a jazz line up that is suitably freaking impressive, no fomo here…unless you aren’t from Melbourne, in which case you should book tickets, and accomodation pronto.

This years International Jazz Festival, kicks off at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl on October 21st. Expect nothing less than six hours of, jazz, disco, and soul care of Chaka Khan, and the one and only king of funk Nile Rodgers & CHIC.

chaka khan

Chaka Khan, is set to take the stage in an exclusive Australian performance celebrating her remarkable 50-year career. A total icon, Khan’s performance isn’t just a concert; it’s a tribute to her incredibly illustrious career. Adding to this, Khan will also officially be inducted into the prestigious Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, confirming her status as a true living legend.

As the sun sets, groove to classic hits like “I’m Every Woman” and “Ain’t Nobody,” and move to the timeless tunes of Nile Rodgers & CHIC, creators of “Le Freak” and “Good Times,” emblematic of the funk and disco spirit.

This years festival is set to be huge, check out the festivities below.

jazz festival 2023

Federation Square Showcases Legendary and Local Acts

Prepare for a weekend of musical magic at Federation Square, where renowned artists from around the world and local heroes will grace the stage on October 20 and 21. This includes MIJF First Nations Resident Artist Bumpy, Zimbabwean soul sensation Thndo, and the talented singer-songwriter Rita Satch, unveiling new material from her upcoming album.

New Orleans Vibes Take Over Melbourne Streets

The streets of Melbourne will groove to the beat of a classic New Orleans jazz parade during the Second Line Street Party. Led by New Orleans legends, the Hot 8 Brass Band, and Melbourne’s own Horns of Leroy, this joyful musical march will sweep along the Yarra River, through Southbank, and Federation Square. So, don your vibrant attire, grab some colorful beads, and join the festive celebration.

Ebo Taylor Brings Ghanaian Highlife to Australia

Renowned Ghanaian guitarist and highlife pioneer Ebo Taylor will grace Australian stages for the first time, teaming up with Melbourne’s The Public Opinion Afro Orchestra. With a six-decade-long career that has influenced Afrobeat and collaborations with legends like Fela Kuti, Taylor’s performance promises an unforgettable Afrobeat and highlife tribute.

lisa simone

Lisa Simone Honors Her Mother’s Legacy

At Hamer Hall, the stage will come alive as Lisa Simone, Grammy-nominated jazz vocalist and daughter of the iconic Nina Simone, pays tribute to her mother’s legacy. Backed by an all-star big band, Lisa will bring the Simone repertoire to life in a deeply personal and lushly orchestrated performance.

Diverse Sounds at Chapel Off Chapel

Chapel Off Chapel becomes a hub of jazz activity with diverse performances. The Lah-Lah’s Adventures show offers a jazzy journey for the little ones, while accomplished musicians like Kendrick Scott and Kristin Berardi deliver their inspiring jazz renditions. Unique collaborations, like the one between Mindy Meng Wang and Paul Grabowsky, offer a blend of Chinese folk music and contemporary jazz.

Late-Night Jam Sessions at The JazzLab

Prepare for late-night jams at The JazzLab, where emerging artists and seasoned performers come together to create thrilling musical experiences. The festival opens with Cheryl Durongpisitkul’s powerful improvising ensemble, followed by international and local talents like Marike van Dijk, Shannon Barnett Quartet, and Daniel Gassin Crossover Band.

Jazz Takes Over Melbourne’s Westside

MIJF expands its reach into Melbourne’s western suburbs, transforming Grazeland into a music and food paradise. Enjoy delectable eats from various vendors while being serenaded by local jazz, soul, funk, and swing acts. A street party in Moonee Ponds and free performances at Maddern Square in Footscray further amplify the festival’s presence in the west.

Get Up Close with Jazz Masters

Experience a series of intimate conversations and enlightening panels as MIJF invites you to get closer to the world’s top jazz artists. Masterclasses with Ingrid Jensen, industry panels, multicultural arts discussions, and Q&A sessions provide unique insights into the world of jazz.

  • Tickets will go on sale 8am today via www.melbournejazz.com
  • Melbourne International Jazz Festival runs from 20-29 October.