Nice Jazz Festival 🎷 2023 Guide
This is a complete guide to the 2023 Nice Jazz Festival, written by a local, including the location, ticketing, insider information, the festival’s history, and showtimes.
One of the most important jazz festivals in the world, the performances at the Nice Jazz Festival are wide in scope to celebrate jazz and to open arms to contemporary music, and include rock, pop, hip-hop, and funk. The festival consists of five incredible nights with six concerts per evening.
There will be two outdoor stages: Théâtre de Verdure will be the venue for all-jazz performances, while the massive Place Masséna stage will be open for the larger (standing) crowd, for all musical genres. Tickets will give access to all concerts on both stages. Spectators can bounce between performances, and help themselves at various food and drinking venues.
The History of the Nice Jazz Festival
The Nice Jazz Festival was the world’s first-ever jazz festival. That’s right — it was in Nice, and not America, that the world’s first ever jazz festival was born. The event took place for the first time in February 1948, at the end of the Carnival, at the opera house! Another venue, the municipal casino (now no longer there) on Place Masséna, lent its Belle Époque decor to this spectacular first festival, and several of the concerts were broadcast live on French radio. The jazz greats were there, starting with Louis Armstrong, the uncontested star of the first edition.
On the closing night at the Hôtel Negresco, the party went on until dawn, ending with a feverish jam session. This first festival was a historic moment, and from that time forth, jazz had a strong following in France.
Ever since Louis Armstrong hit the stage as the undisputed star of the first event, many great artists followed: Ella Fitzgerald, Stephanie Grappelli, Carlos Santana, and Earth Wind and Fire.
But, as time progressed, the festival has begun to open up to various other musical trends. Pop, hip-hop, and eclectic musicians now join the stage for a one-of-a-kind music festival. Now, jazz stars are joined by musicians like Chick Corea, George Benson, Gipsy King, Mary J. Blige among many others. It also opened its door to current artists like Keziah Jones, Ibrahim Maalouf, Jamie Cullum, Billy Hart, Randy Weston, Parov Stellar, and many other contemporary artists.
Videos of the Nice Jazz Festival
Nice Jazz Festival 2023 Event Details
Event Type: Music Festival
Date: July 17 to 21, 2023
Timing: Generally, doors open at 6:30pm and concerts start at 7:30pm. Check your ticket.
Tickets: €39 per evening (reduced fares for young people), or get the Blind Pass fare at €106 instead of €140 which will give access to all concerts on both stages for the entire festival.
Location: Two outdoor stages: Place Masséna (which can accommodate up to 6500 standing people) and Théâtre de Verdure (up to 2415 people, including sitting, standing, and wheelchair). Children under 10 are free.
Website: Official Jazz Festival Website
Transportation: Check our guide to Nice’s transportation options.