The Montreux Jazz Festival Expands Its Legacy to Miami with a Spectacular Weekend

Will Smith's cameo rap performance with Jon Batiste becomes a highlight of the festival.
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The Montreux Jazz Festival Expands Its Legacy to Miami with a Spectacular Weekend

The Montreux Jazz Festival Miami made a grand entrance this weekend at The Hangar in Coconut Grove, marking its debut with three days of eclectic musical performances from March 1 to 3. This multi-genre music celebration successfully blended exceptional musical talent with a scenic Miami backdrop, creating an unmatched cultural experience.

Star-Studded Performances Light Up The Hangar

The festival attracted thousands of fans, eager to see performances by a range of artists including Jon Batiste, Daryl Hall, The Wailers, Cimafunk, and Emily Estefan. The event kicked off with a bang, with the opening night quickly selling out, prompting an additional performance by Grammy-winner Jon Batiste due to high demand.

 Jon Batiste and Will Smith at Montreux Jazz Miami
Jon Batiste and Will Smith at Montreux Jazz Miami,  Photo Credit: @mannyofmiami

A Festival of Musical Fusion and Surprises

Highlights from the festival's first night featured Justin Kauflin, ELEW, and Jon Batiste, along with special guests like Cecile McLorin Salvant and Cory Henry. Batiste's Love Riot procession through the crowd brought a New Orleans vibe to Miami's shores. The Legendary Montreux Jam Session curated by Elmo Lovano saw musicians like Cory Henry returning for a memorable two-hour improvisation, with young talent Brandon Goldberg joining on the grand piano.

 Daniela Mercury's Montreux Jazz Miami Performance
Daniela Mercury's Montreux Jazz Miami Performance, Photo Credit: @MannyofMiami

The festival's second night was filled with unexpected moments and special guest appearances, including a masterclass by Jon Batiste. Cimafunk's Grammy-nominated rhythms and Daniela Mercury's performance added to the festival's vibrant atmosphere. A standout moment was Brazilian artist Lia de Itamaracá joining Jon Batiste for her first performance outside Brazil, alongside a cameo by Will Smith that became one of the festival's most talked-about moments.

 Daryl Hall's Performance at Montreux Jazz Miami
Daryl Hall's Performance at Montreux Jazz Miami, Photo Credit: @MannyofMiami

Closing Night Brings Legends to the Stage

The festival concluded with performances by Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Daryl Hall, The Wailers, Emily Estefan, Cory Henry, and the remarkable pianist Mathis Picard. Supported by partners like Audemars Piguet and Meyer Sound, the Montreux Jazz Festival Miami closed on a high note, leaving attendees looking forward to its future editions.

The Legacy of Montreux Jazz Festival

Originating in Switzerland in 1967, the Montreux Jazz Festival has evolved from a purely jazz event to a genre-spanning musical extravaganza, showcasing legendary performances and fostering emerging talent. Its expansion to cities worldwide has carried the festival's spirit across the globe, with the Miami edition adding a new chapter to its illustrious history. For more information on Montreux Jazz Festival Miami visit: