The Festival

Since 1999, The Cavell Leitch New Zealand International Jazz & Blues Festival has provided Christchurch with a world-class music festival. An annual event, which aims to profile, support and present New Zealand artists alongside international musicians.

The 2016 Festival carries on in this tradition, boasting an exciting line-up of concerts featuring Grammy Award winners; rising stars; local legends and everything in between.

At the top of our list of must-see performances is the Ramsey Lewis Quartet – in New Zealand for one show only! Multi Grammy Award winning jazz pianist and composer, Ramsey Lewis has been an iconic leader in the contemporary jazz movement for more than 50 years. With an unforgettable sound and outgoing personality that has allowed him to cross over to the pop and R&B charts, this is a concert not to be missed. The Ramsey Lewis Quartet will perform one magni cent show in the Isaac Theatre Royal on Thursday 26 May. Get your tickets early and secure your seat at what promises to be one of the best concerts of the year.

To celebrate 25 years of the Jazz School in Christchurch, we’re kicking off the 2016 festival with a 25th Anniversary Gala Concert of ‘everything’ Christchurch Jazz – Isaac Theatre Royal, 25 May.

The 2016 Festival also sees the return of the very popular Jazz Dine at the George Hotel and Dormer Jazz and Blues Club at The Gym (The Arts Centre). The club will host a selection of festival shows including the fantastic 7.30 pm series featuring international jazz and blues musicians as well as a 10 pm Jazz Slam presented by Christchurch’s New Music Collective’s and a few lunchtime concerts. Our Jazz in the City series is sure to get people moving with special performances by Tami Neilson, Sal Valentine & The Babyshakes, and the Hipstamatics. Closing out the 2016 event will be an afternoon concert featuring four high jazz bands.

The 2016 Cavell Leitch New Zealand International Jazz & Blues Festival is made possible by the generosity of our supporters including our loyal naming partner Cavell Leitch, and our sponsors Christchurch City Council, Publica, Rata Foundation, Dormer Construction, iSite, Wickliffe, Black Estate, Pernod Ricard, The George Hotel, The Heritage, Classic Villa and the Ramada Inn. Grants provided by Creative Communities, CNZ, The Southern Trust, The Lion Foundation, Four Winds Foundation, First Sovereign, Pub Charity and Trust Aoraki.

We look forward to another great event.


Jodi Wright

Festival Trust

Austin Forbes QC


Tom Rainey


Neill Pickard


Hall Cannon


Tim Trollope



Jodi Wright

Festival Director

Lindsay Mayor Brady

Production Manager

Marianne Hargreaves

Marketing Manager

Produced by

Christchurch International Jazz Festival Trust

PO Box 1089, Christchurch 8140, New Zealand



Past Seasons

2015 Season

2014 Season

2013 Season