JIS News

With less than a week before the start of the Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival, Executive Producer of the festival and President of Turnkey Productions, Walter Elmore, said that preparations are on target.
“The stage is already up and the roof is going up now. Most of our skyboxes are up, we are putting in the food court, so we are well advanced in our preparations,” he told JIS News, adding that the sound system and lighting equipment should be on site within a few days.
The festival, which is in its 11th year, will be held at the Aqueduct in Rose Hall from January 22 to 24. The Jamaica Tourist Board is the title sponsor.
Mr. Elmore, who spoke to JIS News at the festival site recently, said that there should be a spike in visitor arrivals to Montego Bay for the event and most hotels in and around the tourism capital have indicated that they are fully booked.
“The hotels are reporting that they are doing quite well. Some of them are sold out already. I am very confident that we should have a very good turnout of both locals and visitors from overseas,” he stated.
Mr. Elmore said that crowd support for the festival is expected to be as good as or even better from previous years.
He noted that the festival has received “tremendous support” from the local business sector over the years and the event has brought business to Montego Bay and Jamaica in general.
According to Mr. Elmore, the annual event not only showcases top local and overseas acts, but also serves to unearth local talent. “One of the things that we hang our hats on is helping young people, and working with finding new talents in Jamaica. And I dedicate an entire stage, our second stage, which we call our talent stage to that effort,” he informed.
“So, when we have a band change on the main stage, young acts perform on the smaller stage,” he told JIS News, pointing out that auditions have already started to identify the acts that will perform on the talent stage. He said some 15 acts will be selected for the talent stage.
Mr. Elmore informed JIS News that adequate arrangements are in place to handle the large volume of traffic expected over the three nights of the show.

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