The legendary Swiss festival returns to full capacity for the first time since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic this summer, running from July 1 to July 16. The typically stacked lineup once again proves the festival’s moniker to be a misnomer, with jazz acts including Herbie Hancock, Gregory Porter and Jamie Cullum to be joined by the likes of Måneskin, Self Esteem and Phoebe Bridgers.
The festival, which takes place across the two stages of Auditorium Stravinski and Montreux Jazz Lab in the resort town on the north coast of Lake Geneva, still has more acts to announce. For now, though, the town’s residents and those visiting can expect to see stalwarts like John Legend, Diana Ross and Robert Plant & Alison Krauss, alongside up-and-comers including Lous and the Yakuza, Gabriels and Nubya Garcia.
The UK is handsomely represented on the initial lineup, with the British charge encompassing everything from experimental Radiohead offshoot The Smile to Mercury Prize-winning blues-rocker Michael Kiwanuka. Loyle Carner, Arlo Parks, Years & Years, Celeste and Paolo Nutini are also in the mix.
Never one to do things by the book, Björk will team up with the Sinfonietta de Lausanne for a special performance, as she continues to put the finishing touches to her hotly-anticipated 10th album. Elsewhere, the festival will continue its tradition of offering a programme of free performances, with details to be confirmed in the coming weeks.
A reinvention of the festival’s format, meanwhile, will see the three-story Lake House serve as the festival’s hub; open 24 hours a day, it will feature ten rooms, including a bar, club, and cinema. “With so many great artists set to play this year, the 56th edition of the Montreux Jazz Festival will be one of our finest yet,” said festival CEO Mathieu Jaton. “For over 50 years, Montreux has created some of the most magical moments in music and we are excited to continue the festival’s legacy”.