Festival International de Jazz de Montréal

A responsible Festival

Social initiatives

Social initiatives For the past several years, the Festival has launched a plethora of social initiatives bearing witness to its commitment to sustainable citizen engagement. Here is a brief look at these actions that benefit the entire community.

Awards and grants

The Festival International de Jazz de Montréal promotes our musical heritage by offering grants and internationally renowned awards.

TD Grand Jazz Award

Parc X Trio - 2010 Recipient of the TD Jazz Grand Prix Created in 1982 under the name Concours de Jazz, this award is offered to support the next generation(s) of Canadian jazz musicians. Each year, the winning artist receives a trophy and a $5,000 grant, and is invited to the following year’s Festival edition. The winner also receives an invitation to participate in the Festi Jazz international de Rimouski and the Festival de Jazz de Québec the following year, as well as recording studio time.

Festival International de Jazz de Montréal grants

The Festival International de Jazz de Montréal has created a number of grants to recognize the excellence of students enrolled in jazz programs in Montréal universities. The grants are awarded based on criteria of excellence promoted by both the Festival and the music faculties.

Here is the list of university institutions benefiting from the Festival’s grants program:

  • Concordia University: The Festival International de Jazz de Montréal Jazz Studies Award;
  • McGill University: The Festival International de Jazz de Montréal Jazz Studies Award;
  • Université du Québec à Montréal: Bourse Oliver Jones du Festival International de Jazz de Montréal;
  • Université de Montréal: Bourse du Festival International de Jazz de Montréal. Dedicated exclusively to guitarists, this grant is accompanied by the annual loan of a jazz guitar from the Ste-Cat collection. Alain Simard has been named an ambassador of the faculty’s jazz department.

Two groups representing each of the faculties are eligible to participate in the University Series at the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal.

Dixieband - Les envolées du Festival

Other social initiatives

The degree of social engagement shown by the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal can be measured in many other initiatives:

  • Presenting a music series, Les Envolées du Festival, dedicated to university students.
  • Hiring dozens of dropouts and student interns. Recruited through the intervention of the Société de développement économique Ville-Marie, the former are assigned to cleaning, maintenance and on-site operations. Provided by the Jeun'Est organization, the latter gain concrete experience in the technical aspects of staging and show production.
  • Paying special attention to people with reduced or limited mobility. The organization Kéroul gave the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal an Accessibility certification for persons with a physical impairment. .
  • Donating unconsumed food prepared by our food service to the Maison du Père.
  • Donating unclaimed lost-and-found objects to the Maison du Père. Unclaimed eyeglasses are remitted to a local optometrist who redirects them to Haiti.
  • Skateboards left on the Festival site that cannot not be returned to their owners are donated to RecySkate. The organization recuperates skateboards and redistributes them to kids from low-income families.
  • Bicycles left on the site are donated to the SOS VÉLO organization

The Blues Camp

Created in 2007 for young local musicians aged 13-17, the Blues Camp offers an extraordinary opportunity to benefit from a week of high-level musical training. Dedicated exclusively to blues, the experience is offered absolutely free of charge! [More…]

JazzFest des jeunes

The JazzFest des jeunes series allows musicians from scholastic institutions or amateur community groups to perform as part of the Festival. In order to participate, budding musicians must first register in the annual Jazz de l’année event held by the JazzFest des jeunes du Québec. Founded in 1978, this organization allows students to garner onstage experience and hone their skills by participating in workshops hosted by professionals from the local, national and international music scenes.


Samajam In collaboration with its sponsor Rio Tinto Alcan, the 32nd edition of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal presented the show À mon école, moi je garde le rythme. Some 720 children took the Rio Tinto Alcan stage to present this show, created as part of the Projet Persévérance scolaire Samajam (Stay in School Project). Created by Quebec producer Samajam, the project offers schools a weekly training program in percussion, dance, music, staging and preparing shows. The goal is to collectively produce a musical concert project, thereby encouraging the development of a sense of belonging, pride and self-esteem among young people.

Presented at the Festival for the first time in 2011, the Samajam project has been repeated in each of the following four editions.