Louis Martinez, a jazz enthusiast, launched the Sète Jazz Festival in 1985 with two concerts in the grounds of the Château d’Eau in Montpellier. In 1996, the event moved to the coastal city of Sète in the Languedoc, and officially became the Sète Jazz Festival. Since then, the event has grown, and now attracts the world’s top jazz musicians as well as jazz-lovers from all over the world. Today, the festival spans 7 days of concerts and brings together numerous performance groups at the spectacular Théâtre de la Mer overlooking the Mediterranean as well as other venues throughout the town.
A town of neon and sound
The festival pours out beyond the official performance spaces to fill every nook and cranny of the city with the toe-tapping sounds of saxophones, pianos and other instruments. Every historic building is lit up at night – bringing the city to life – and people gather all over to listen to and applaud the spontaneous concerts that pop up in every street and square. To end it all, fireworks fill the night sky, reflecting off the calm waters of the Med and the Thau Lagoon.
This July, around 20 artists including Jamie Lidell & The Royal Pharaohs, Religo Duo, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue and Youn Sun Nah, performed during the festival. Only 20 minutes’ drive from the La Baraquette vineyard resort and spa in Marseillan, owners and guests alike will be encouraged to make the most of what, in the summer of 2018, should be a truly memorable musical experience.