The Toronto Jazz Festival is a jazz event in Toronto and takes place for 10 days in late June through early July. Unlike the Toronto Beaches Jazz Festival, most of the events are indoors and located throughout the downtown core. The hub of the Festival is Nathan Phillips Square, with more than 40 other locations spread out all across the city. It attracts over 500,000 people and is the city's second largest annual music festival next to NXNE. Incorporating a blend of jazz styles - from straight-ahead to bop to fusion to avant-garde- with tastes of other genres (for example, blues, funk, R&B, hip-hop, Latin, etc...) the Festival has something for everyone. Formerly known as the DuMaurier Jazz Festival until the ban on tobacco advertising by the federal government forced the need for a new sponsor. Today, the festival is now sponsored by TD Bank and has since dropped the word "Downtown" from its title.
Originally started in 1987, the Festival was co-founded by Executive Producer Patrick Taylor and Former Artistic Director Jim Galloway; currently, the Artistic Director is Josh Grossman. Roy Thomson Hall, the CN Tower and Metro Convention Centre were the three venues for that inaugural season. Miles Davis, Roberta Flack and Tony Bennett were the headliners that year.
Past performers include: Miles Davis, Sarah Vaughan, Dizzy Gillespie, Cab Calloway, Sonny Rollins, Ray Charles, Sun Ra, Tony Bennett, Rosemary Clooney, Dr. John, Dave Brubeck, Stan Getz, Oscar Peterson, McCoy Tyner, Harry Connick Jr., Etta James, Diana Krall, Pat Metheny, Jane Bunnett, Roy Hargrove, Keith Jarrett, Wynton Marsalis, The Roots, Molly Johnson, Bela Fleck & The Flecktones, Seu Jorge, Madeleine Peyroux, Hiromi, Herbie Hancock, Aretha Franklin, Chaka Khan, George Benson, Blind Boys of Alabama, Macy Gray, Medeski, Martin and Wood, Dr. John, Chris Potter and more.