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Litchfield Jazz Festival 2011

Roy Haynes, Vijay Iyer are standouts at Connecticut fest

Davell Crawford at Litchfield, 2011
Roy Haynes at Litchfield, 2011

In 2009, the Litchfield Jazz Festival moved from its previous location in Goshen, Conn.-held in a huge tent with clear views of the stage from the grassy area surrounding it-to its present location on the grounds of the Kent School, where the successful month-long Litchfield Jazz Camp holds forth. In its first year in Kent, the festival was hampered by torrential rains, which caused flooding in the tent, forcing the festivities into the Springs Center hockey rink located on the Kent School grounds.

To avoid the issue of flooding, the festival moved into the spacious hockey rink in 2010 and remained an indoor event in 2011 for its 16th edition. Long-time regulars now lament the move from Goshen, where the Litchfield Jazz Festival felt more connected to the great outdoors. While the hockey rink provides protection from the elements (and it did indeed rain steadily on Saturday night), the boomy acoustics indoors are hardly ideal. And the vibe has been seriously diluted in this dark, sterile environment. Watch for the festival to move to a new location in the future, possibly by next year.

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