The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival is one of the most iconic music festivals in the world. Every year, hundreds of thousands of people flock to the city to experience the unique culture and music that the festival has to offer. But what is the history of this event, and how can you make the most of your visit? In this article, we'll explore the history of the festival, its policies on COVID-19, job and volunteer opportunities, ticketing information, accessibility options, and more. The first Jazz Festival took place in April 1970 in Congo Square with an all-star lineup that included Mahalia Jackson, Duke Ellington, Fats Domino, Pete Fountain, The Preservation Hall Brass Band, Mardi Gras Indians and many others.
Only 350 people attended the inaugural event, but attendance has since grown to nearly 500,000. The festival is now supervised and coordinated by the Jazz & Heritage Foundation, as they continue to present local and international talents on the JazzFest platform. Tickets for the JazzFest are available for purchase on the JazzFest site a few months before the event, or at the gates on any day of the festival. You can find a variety of tickets including 3-day general admission one-day weekend passes, VIP packages and travel packages. We recommend buying tickets in advance, as early bird discounts often apply.
The Jazz-Fest cubes are grid-shaped schedules that let attendees know who will perform on what day, time and stage during the two-weekend festival. JazzFest welcomes people of all levels to come out and enjoy the festival's food, music and culture. The Access Program team is dedicated to ensuring the accessibility of the festival. The Access Center and accommodations throughout the festival are detailed on the access map. Accessible seating is available for those who need it; stop at the Access Center to get a wristband each day you attend.
Wheelchairs and medical scooters are allowed at the festival to help customers with disabilities. The festival offers ASL interpretation for performances as requested. For more information on how to bring a bike to the JazzFest, head here and keep in mind that bike rentals will fill up quickly as the festival date approaches. All attendees agree to follow festival policies (including health and safety policies) and post instructions during their stay at the festival. With 12 stages of moving music: jazz, gospel, cajun, zydeco, blues, R&B, rock, funk, African, Latin, Caribbean, folk and much more, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival is firmly established as a singular celebration of historical and contemporary importance. Because New Orleans is so central to pop music, almost every act and genre you can imagine has gone through the more than a dozen stages of the JazzFest. It's best to book your flight for the JazzFest before the lineup is announced, but don't worry if you're a little late to the game.
As a general rule, you'll find better fares if you're flying in the middle of the week. And since JazzFest is such an important celebration in New Orleans, even if you arrive a couple of days before the start of the weekend or leave between weekends, you'll find plenty to do in the city during the week in between. Jazz-Fest Express tickets and tickets are available for sale on the days of the Festival at these locations or in advance. For more information on annual Jazz & Heritage Festival visit here. Be sure to check out our own Ultimate JazzFest Guide periodically for updates and new announcements. Now that you know a little more about what JazzFest is, a brief history and its incredible impact on New Orleans culture and music scene - I'm sure you're wondering how to book and navigate a once-in-a-lifetime Jazz-Fest experience on your own.