Tri-C JazzFest will make toes tap this year, just in a
different way. The show, as they say, must go on.
So a virtual festival showcasing Cleveland’s deep reservoir of
jazz talent will stream across various online platforms over two
late-summer nights. The tunes start at 7 p.m. on both Friday,
Aug. 21, and Saturday, Aug. 22.
The online event will be free, though viewers will have the
opportunity to donate to Cuyahoga Community College’s Student
Emergency Fund. Money raised will specifically benefit creative
arts students experiencing
unforeseen financial challenges with the potential to derail
“The format may be different this year, but music is about the
moment,” said Terri Pontremoli, director of Tri-C JazzFest.
“We’re going to provide plenty of those for our audience while
making a difference for our students.”
The virtual festival will feature pre-recorded and live
performances from local acts; drop-in interviews with jazz
icons; and footage of memorable moments from past Tri-C
The goal is to
put the depth and scope of Tri-C JazzFest on display while
highlighting the festival’s powerful influence on creative arts
students and the Northeast Ohio jazz scene over the past four
Acclaimed trumpeter Dominick Farinacci will perform and serve as
host of the virtual festival. Farinacci’s path to becoming an
international recording artist began in the classrooms of
Cuyahoga Community College two decades ago.
The full lineup of performers will be announced June 18.
The future of jazz will also be represented at the virtual
festival with young musicians from the Tri-C JazzFest Academy.
The academy’s Spirit of the Groove ensemble will show the
results of countless hours of training through the College’s
Creative Arts Center of Excellence.
Tri-C’s music program offers opportunities for students to earn
associate degrees while building their skills. Graduates
routinely continue their education at esteemed institutions such
as Berklee College of Music and The Hartt School at the
University of Hartford.
“Our students always shine bright in the spotlight,” Pontremoli
said. “Their hard work embodies the mission of the College and
of Tri-C JazzFest.”
At its heart, Tri-C JazzFest strives to educate and nurture an
appreciation of jazz. Events
throughout the year connect students of all ages with jazz
performers who bring the art form to life. Many of the programs
are free to expand access to the performing arts.
The virtual festival in August reflects the College’s goal to
connect the community to the arts. Visit tri-cjazzfest.com for
information on the festival, including how to stream the
“Tri-C JazzFest is a cherished tradition in Cleveland,”
Pontremoli said. “And while we can’t gather in person this year
as we normally would, we can come together virtually to
appreciate great music, share an experience and support our
“COVID-19 may have canceled the June weekend festival, but it
will not silence the music.”
The virtual Tri-C JazzFest Cleveland is presented by KeyBank and
made possible by Cuyahoga Community College,
the National Endowment for the Arts,
the Ohio Arts Council, Strassman Insurance Services Inc., The
George Gund Foundation and a growing list of donors and vendors.