The Wichita Jazz Festival offers more than a week’s worth of free and inexpensive musical events. It’s of the longest running jazz festivals in the country, and it happens right here in Wichita, Kansas! The 2017 Wichita Jazz Festival will feature concerts, talks, and other events from April 4-16, 2017.
As always, the Festival hosts a number of free events and offers special ticket rates for students. Students can purchase a Festival Pass, which grants access to all Jazz Festival ticketed events, including Golden Circle seating at the headline concert, for only $42.50 (plus fees). For all others, a Festival Pass is still just $77.50 (plus fees).
When purchased individually, ticketed events range in price from $5 to $15, with the exception of the headliner concert at the Orpheum on April 15.
This year’s festival lineup includes several new events and features regional, national, and international performers. These performers include Deborah Brown, The Kandinsky Effect, Alaturka, and headliner Pat Metheny with Martin Wind and Matt Wilson. Tickets for the Pat Metheny show at the Wichita Orpheum range in price from $47.50 to $67.50.
Tuesday, April 4
The jazz festival opens with a panel discussion on “Wichita Jazz Past, Present and Future” at Fisch Haus on April 4 from 8-10 p.m. This is a free event.
Sunday, April 9
A jazz brunch at the Wichita Art Museum on Sunday, April 9 is also free, although you will probably want to buy brunch. The jazz brunch is from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the museum’s Muse Cafe.
Monday, April 10
The Wichita Jazz Festival Kickoff Party will be held from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on Monday, April 10 in the ICT Pop-Up park. Enjoy live performances by Daydream and Odisea. Food trucks will also be onsite so you can get dinner, but the event is free.
After the kickoff, the new Coffeehouse Crawl at 7 p.m. (on April 10) will offer free jazz festival performances at several community locations. The crawl will feature jazz musicians from Wichita State University at KMUW, Bethel College at Reverie, Hutchinson Community College at Mead’s Corner, and Friends University at R Coffeehouse.
Tuesday, April 11
Another free Wichita Jazz Festival event will be held on Tuesday evening, April 11 at Watermark Books. Author Paul Youngquist will be signing books from 6-7 p.m. at the local bookstore.
At 8 p.m. on Tuesday evening, Mort’s Martini and Cigar Bar will be the location of the Wichita Jazz Festival jam session, which is also free. This event is for ages 21+ only.
Wednesday, April 12
Wednesday night, Alaturka will perform at Roxy’s Downtown from 8-11 p.m. Tickets are $10 or just $5 for students.
Thursday, April 13
Thursday at Roxy’s, The Kandisky Effect will perform from 8-10 p.m. Again, tickets are just $10 or $5 for students.
Friday, April 14
Friday during the day, Wichita State University will host its annual jazz invitational from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the WSU Duerksen Fine Arts Center. This day-long event is free, and features the top high school and college bands in a juried competition.
Friday night, Deborah Brown and the Wichita Jazz Festival All-Star Big Band will perform at Roxy’s Downtown from 8-10 p.m. General admission tickets are $15 and student tickets are $8.
Saturday, April 15
Saturday morning, Watermark Books will host KMUW personality Chris Heim and the WJF Sessions Band from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. This event is also free.
Saturday night, the big headliner concert with Pat Metheney will be held at the Wichita Orpheum from 8-9:30 p.m., with an after-party at Barleycorn’s from 9:30-11 p.m. Tickets range in price from $47.50 to $67.50.
Sunday, April 16
A special concert at Bartlett Arboretum will conclude the 2017 Wichita Jazz Festival on Sunday afternoon, April 16 from 4-6 p.m. Wichita fusion legend Jerry Hahn will perform. Tickets for the Arboretum concert are only $10.
This will be a fun, and very inexpensive, week full of jazz music in Wichita. Take advantage of the opportunity to enjoy some free live entertainment and talks! To purchase tickets or learn more about the performers and events happening, visit the WJF website.