Longtime journalist and broadcaster Michael Bourne will host and emcee the 14th Annual Litchfield Jazz Festival, which will begin on Friday, July 31 and conclude a few days later on Sunday, August 2. Artists scheduled to appear this year include Jane Monheit, Lewis Nash, Benny Green and Bucky Pizzarelli, the Bill Henderson Quartet, the Poncho Sanchez Latin Jazz, and the Lionel Loueke Trio.
Bourne adds a colorful, lively presence to this year’s festival. The St. Louis native has been a senior writer at Downbeat magazine for 40 years. Since 1984, he’s also been a deejay for WBGO Jazz88.3 FM in Newark, New Jersey. (He hosts the popular “Singers Unlimited” show on Sundays from 10 a.m.-2 p.m., and “Afternoon Jazz” every Monday through Friday from 2-6:30 p.m.) A recipient of the Willis Conover/Marian McPartland Lifetime Achievement Award for broadcasting, Bourne’s emceed jazz festivals from New York to Bombay, and for 10 years he’s been an artistic director, performer and emcee for the Jazz on the Mountain Festival in New York’s Hudson Valley.
Though this will be the 14th edition of the Litchfield Jazz Festival, it’ll be the first held at Kent School in Kent Connecticut. In addition to main-stage performances, there’ll be crafters, fine artists, student performances, master classes with festival stars, food from a variety of local restaurants and more. For more details, go to www.litchfieldjazzfest.com. Also, to learn more about WBGO, go to www.wbgo.org.