Fresh from the confines of The Music Room and following a two hour production meeting with Matt, I now sit at my desk once more. It can mean only one thing.. Lancaster Jazz '14 is upon us!
That manic time of year when the third weekend of September merges into one long day. Days lose their titles and are referred to only by the stage they are hosting. Jazz fans become ever more excited about the headliner, announced earlier in the year, names that I myself have never heard. And the 24 hour clock is well and truly forgotten.
And that is just Festival dates themselves.
All year the Fest Team work to pull off a festival that brings in, so I am told, big name artists to the idyllic town of Lancaster. Matt and Dave work tirelessly to produce a festival out of very little. Leo, NEVER stops. Luke blogs like there is no tomorrow. Jack works with very little to spread the word of LJF. And that's not to mention the countless others who generously give up there time to carry gear, help with get-ins and outs, distribute flyers and find lost artists in Lancaster's infamous one way system – it has happened to the best of us!
So why bother?? Every year I ask myself the same question. And, truthfully, I do not have an answer. But what I can say is the sense of achieving something, seeing grown men excited like children about a Jazz Artist, seeing what can be made when people of varying backgrounds with varying strengths work together. Witnessing it from an Non-Jazz point of view, seeing the festival without its dressings. Seeing what is fundamentally important. I guess that is what I have taken from LJF.
So here's to another year of Lancaster Jazz Festival. May it be better than the last, but hold less than the next!
- Jen Benson, festival manager