Photos: 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival

The 40th annual gathering was both a valediction and a celebration

The Orchestre National de Jazz de Montréal at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival
The Orchestre National de Jazz de Montréal, led by Sylvester Onyejiaka, a.k.a. Sly5thAve (far left), at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival (photo: Sharonne Cohen)
Alain Simard, André Ménard, and WBGO’s Michael Bourne at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival
Left to right: Alain Simard, André Ménard, and WBGO’s Michael Bourne at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival (photo: Sharonne Cohen)
George Benson at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival
George Benson at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival (photo: Sharonne Cohen)
Joe Claussell at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival
Joe Claussell at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival (photo: Sharonne Cohen)
Nubya Garcia at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival
Nubya Garcia at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival (photo: Sharonne Cohen)
Kendrick Scott at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival
Kendrick Scott at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival (photo: Sharonne Cohen)
Larry Grenadier at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival
Larry Grenadier at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival (photo: Sharonne Cohen)
Keyon Harrold at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival
Keyon Harrold at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival (photo: Sharonne Cohen)
Malika Tirolien at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival
Malika Tirolien at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival (photo: Sharonne Cohen)
Roberto Fonseca at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival
Roberto Fonseca at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival (photo: Sharonne Cohen)
Nate Smith at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival
Nate Smith at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival (photo: Sharonne Cohen)
Lex French at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival
Lex French at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival (photo: Sharonne Cohen)
Allison Miller at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival
Allison Miller at the 2019 Montreal International Jazz Festival (photo: Sharonne Cohen)

When Alain Simard and André Ménard founded the Montreal International Jazz Festival in 1979, it consisted of two concerts at one theater. Forty years later, the fest takes over much of Montreal for 10 days, presenting a dizzying array of performers and music styles in multiple venues, and its growth shows no sign of ceasing. Having achieved all they wanted and more, Simard and Ménard announced that this year’s festival would be their last at the helm. That the annual Quebec gathering—held from June 27 to July 6—had something of a valedictory air wasn’t surprising. But the predominant mood was one of celebration, of four decades well spent. Montreal photographer Sharonne Cohen was on call with her camera as usual; here is just some of what she saw. For more on the festival, check out Sharonne’s review of its second week and Philip Booth’s review of its first weekend. —Mac Randall

Sharonne Cohen

Sharonne Cohen is a Montreal-based writer and editor. A music journalist since 2001, she has contributed to publications including JazzTimes, DownBeat, OkayPlayer, VICE/Noisey, Afropop Worldwide, The Revivalist, and La Scena Musicale; her articles are often accompanied by her photographs.