DC Jazz Festival Announces Nick Cannon to Host Finale Celebrating Great Masters of Jazz

April 30, 2019

DC Jazz Festival Announces Nick Cannon to Host Finale  Celebrating Great Masters of Jazz

Tribute to honor Quincy Jones, Roy Hargrove, Nancy Wilson, and More 

at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts



WASHINGTON, DC – April 30, 2019 – DC Jazz Festival (DCJF), with the only city-wide jazz festival in the mid-Atlantic region, today announced that Nick Cannonwill hostGreat Masters of Jazz, on June 16 in the Kennedy Center Concert Hall. Co-presented by the DC Jazz Festival and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, with support from Events DC, Great Masters of Jazzwill celebrate the life and work of the legend Quincy Jones; the trailblazing trumpeter-bandleader Roy Hargrove; the highly influential song stylist Nancy Wilson; and DC’s own peerless pianist-vocalist Shirley Horn and saxophonist-educator Fred Foss. Featured performers and presenters include the Roy Hargrove Big Band, Patti Austin, Kenny Garrett, Justin Kauflin, Adam Clayton Powell III, Angela Stribling, Paxton Baker, Sharón Clark, Princess Mhoon Dance Project, and very special guests. 


For Great Masters of Jazz tickets,click here.  


Nick Cannon has entertained audiences in film, on television, on record, onstage and online for nearly 20 years. The talented artist continues to dominate all facets of entertainment as a comedian, host, actor, writer, director, executive producer, deejay, philanthropist, and children’s book author. While regularly making guest appearances on hit comedies including 30 Rock, Real Husbands of Hollywood, Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Chappelle’s Show, Cannon spent eight seasons as the host of NBC’s highly successful talent competition series America’s Got Talent.


“Nick Cannon is the perfect addition to Great Masters of Jazz,” said Sunny Sumter, DC Jazz Festival Executive Director. “Our 15thAnniversary finale promises to be chock full of fantastic music tributes and surprise guests honoring iconic jazz legends who have influenced music of all genres.” The DC Jazz Festival will bestow its annual lifetime achievement awards to Quincy Jones and DC saxophonist-educator Fred Foss in recognition of their stellar contributions to jazz music. 


As the largest and most diverse music festival in the nation’s capital, DC JazzFest presented by Events DC, celebrates its 15thAnniversary with a citywide celebration of jazz,  June 7-16, with concerts in over 40 venues, attracting national and international audiences to the District. Venue partners includeThe Wharf, The Anthem, the Kennedy Center, City Winery, The Hamilton Live, CapitalBop, East River Jazz and the Anacostia BID, Kreeger Museum, Franklin Square and the Downtown BID, UDC, Atlas Theater, Ivy Smokehouse, National Gallery of Art, Westminster Church, Mr. Henry’s, Pearl Street Warehouse and dozens of DC clubs, galleries, hotels, and restaurants.  A list of signature events follows.


For more information about the 2019 DC JazzFest presented by Events DC, including concert updates and ticketing information, visit dcjazzfest.org.



DC JazzFest at The Wharf presented by Events DC (June 14-16) with four stages. Artists include: Snarky Puppy, José James, Jon Batiste & Stay Human, Michael Franks, Joshua Redman Quartet with Aaron Goldberg, Reuben Rogers & Gregory Hutchinson, Joey Alexander Trio, Ralph Peterson & GenNext Big Band (honoring the Art Blakey Centennial), Sean Jones Dizzy Spellz, DCJazzPrix winning band Cornerstore, Tarus Mateen & Beyond Genre, and an international stage featuring guitarist Olli Soikkeli (Finland), saxophonist Evan Harris (Australia), Girls In Airports (Denmark), Witness Matlou Trio (South Africa), and more. Concerts on the District and Transit Piers, and Pearl Street Warehouse are free to the public. Concerts at The Anthem are ticketed. Snarky Puppy (and José James) on sale now here. Jon Batiste & Stay Human (Brass-A-Holics) on sale here


Great Masters of Jazz in the Kennedy Center Concert Hall (June 16) andCelebrating Randy Weston in the Family Theater (June 9), as well as free Millennium Stage concerts that are part of Jazz in the 'Hoods. This year's Millennium Stage series June 9-16, The Nat King Cole Legacy, will feature singing piano players in the Cole tradition. Tickets for Great Masters of Jazz,click here.  For Celebrating Randy Weston, click here.


Jazz in the 'Hoods presented by Events DC (June 6-16). Jazz takes over the District in 20+ neighborhoods with presentations curated by Jazz in the ‘Hoods partners including The Hamilton Live, City Winery, CapitalBop, East River JazzFest, and more. Jazz in the ‘Hoods artists and schedule to be announced soon.


Jazz 'n Families Fun Days (Prelude Weekend, June 1-2). In partnership with The Phillips Collection, the Jazz 'n Families Fun Day weekend celebrates jazz and the visual arts with performances by more than a dozen regional artists and rising star ensembles. Artists and schedule to be announced soon.


Stay connected to the DC Jazz festival at dcjazzfest.org.


ABOUT THE DC JAZZ FESTIVAL:DC Jazz Festival presents world-renowned and emerging artists in celebration of jazz; unifies diverse communities; advances jazz and music education with exciting and adventurous musical experiences; shines the spotlight on DC-based musicians; and highlights   DC as a premier cultural destination. Our signature programs are the annual DC JazzFest, now in its 15th year, with 150 performances in 40 venues including our tribute concerts in partnership with The Kennedy Center; Jazz in the 'Hoods with citywide partnerships in 20+ neighborhoods; DC JazzFest at The Wharf, our marquee weekend with free outdoor stages and The Anthem; the year-round DCJF Education in partnership with DC public and charter schools, and arts centers; the Charles Fishman Artist Embassy Series honoring our founder; and DCJazzPrix, an international band competition. The DC Jazz Festival won the 2018 DC Mayor's Arts Award for Excellence in Creative Industries. In 2015, The New York Timesnamed DC JazzFest one of “50 Essential Summer Festivals.” For more information, visit dcjazzfest.org.


ABOUT KENNEDY CENTER JAZZ: Kennedy Center Jazz, under the leadership of Artistic Director Jason Moran, presents legendary artists who have helped shape the art form, artists who are emerging on the jazz scene, and innovative multidisciplinary projects throughout the year. The KC Jazz Club, launched in 2002 and dubbed “the future of the jazz nightclub” by JazzTimes, hosts many of these artists in an intimate setting; while the Crossroads Club, launched in 2012, is a nightclub dance venue. Annual Kennedy Center jazz events include the professional development residency program for young artists, Betty Carter’s Jazz Ahead;NPR’s A Jazz Piano Christmas, the Kennedy Center holiday tradition shared by millions around the country via broadcast on NPR; and theMary Lou Williams Jazz Festival, created in 1996 by the late Dr. Billy Taylor (Kennedy Center Artistic Director for Jazz, 1994–2010). The Center co-produces the annual NEA Jazz Masters Tribute Concerts, celebrating iconic figures in the music. 

Keep up with the DCJF:

•       Twitter: @dcjazzfest

•       Facebook: facebook.com/dcjazzfest

•       Instagram: @dcjazzfest


The DC Jazz Festival®, a 501(c)(3) non-profit service organization, and its 2019 current programs are made possible, in part, with major grants from the Government of the District of Columbia, Muriel Bowser, Mayor; with awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, an agency supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Office of Cable Television, Film, Music & Entertainment; the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development; and, in part, by major grants from the Galena-Yorktown Foundation, The Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation, Gillon Family Charitable Fund, Wells Fargo Foundation, The NEA Foundation, Venable Foundation, The Dallas Morse Coors Foundation for the Performing Arts, The Max and Victoria Dreyfus Foundation, and The Reva & David Logan Foundation. ©2019 DC Jazz Festival. All rights reserved.