Manchester’s longest running music festival returns this Bank Holiday weekend, with more than 60 free gigs, music in more venues across the city than ever before and an exciting new festival hub.

From May 23 – 27, the length of St Ann’s Square to New Cathedral Street will play host to free gigs across three stages – the St Ann’s, mjf introduces and Acoustic stages. You’ll also find a range of culinary treats curated in partnership with Manchester Food and Drink Festival. Harvey Nichols Manchester will extend their bar outside the store and into the festival hub, selling a range of prosecco and other delights. Here you’ll also find two further festival bars serving up beers from Meantime Brewery and a range of specialist gins from JJ Whitley.

Highlights of mjf 2019’s music line-up include the Celebrating Europe strand which champions the rich musical talent across the channel at such a pertinent political time, the addition of new festival venues The Whiskey Jar, YES, The Royal Exchange Studio, The Bread Shed, Deaf Institute and The International Anthony Burgess Foundation, and the premiere of three new commissions.

mjf Artistic Director Steve Mead said: “This year’s new and improved mjf has taken months of planning and programming – and we can’t believe it’s finally here! There’s a lot to listen out for this year and the festival experience will take you on a non-stop rollercoaster ride of discovery around the city, creating your own sonic adventure of unmissable and memorable moments.

“Amidst all the changes, our commitment to commissioning northern and European artists is stronger than ever. I count amongst my personal highlights our three new works: Maja Bugge’s multi-media Northern, Nani Noam Vazana and Abel Selaocoe’s moving Both Sides of Africa and Andy Scott’s Mancunity – a spectacular opening fanfare for the festival, our new location and Manchester and its people.

“Join us for some extraordinary music-making this summer and see for yourself what makes us one of Europe’s most adventurous jazz festivals.”

Tickets for all mjf 2019 events are now on sale at

This year, mjf is offering £5 tickets for under 25-year olds at selected gigs for a limited time only, to welcome the city’s student population and celebrate the first term-time mjf in over 20 years.  


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