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DC Jazz Festival Moving Its Headquarters to Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater

DC Jazz Festival® (DCJF) is excited to announce that we are moving our headquarters to Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater later this Spring. Founded in 1950, Arena Stage has been hailed as “a flagship American theater,” home to diverse theatrical productions spanning both classic and contemporary perspectives. Arena Stage is located in the city’s vibrant Southwest Waterfront neighborhood, conveniently adjacent to The Wharf, home of the annual DC JazzFest’s marquee weekend.

“DC Jazz Festival is thrilled to be moving its headquarters to Arena Stage," says DCJF President and CEO Sunny Sumter. “Partnering with the most significant theater for American voices is the perfect fit for DCJF as we set the course for the next phase of the festival’s growth.”

“From the moment of conception, the Mead Center was built with the idea that Arena Stage would have amazing artistic partners from around our community showcased in the spaces, focusing on our mission of American artists and ideas,” shared Arena Stage Artistic Director Molly Smith. “We have shared the space with other theater companies, and this season with Step Afrika! through their dynamic and revelatory dancing. We look forward to now sharing DC Jazz with our Arena fans, who I know will be thrilled to experience these brilliant artists.”

“I could not agree more with the statement that jazz is our nation’s gift to the world,” observed Arena Stage Executive Producer Edgar Dobie. “In Sunny’s grace-filled hands, DC Jazz Festival is a vibrant organization and a gift to our community. We are thrilled to share the Mead Center with them and last summer have already felt their most welcome presence at the Wharf. We cannot wait to hear the most American of voices, jazz, on our stages.”

The move is in line with DCJF’s shift of its DC JazzFest from June to September. The 2022 DC JazzFest will take place August 31-September 4 over Labor Day Weekend. With five days of concerts citywide, the 2022 DC JazzFest will be a celebration of all things jazz in more than 12 venues citywide. DC JazzFest at The Wharf will take place September 3-4, featuring multiple waterfront stages, as well as the DCJazzPrix international band competition at Union Stage. For the first time, DCJF will welcome Arena Stage to its family of venues with jazz programs throughout the weekend.

Learn more about the DC Jazz Festival and the full range of programs by visiting


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