BIG 40th Festival

Festival Postponed!

After much discussion, the Merimbula Jazz Festival Committee has resolved to postpone the BIG 40th MJF for another 12 months. While we had confidence that we could program a very successful BIG 40th Jazz Festival in 2021, the reality is that uncertainties remain – which makes planning the festival problematic.

The Committee has specifically carried out a risk assessment of the possibility of lockdowns, or other restrictions being imposed at short notice, as well as the progress of the vaccine roll-out. Any restrictions imposed at short notice late in the planning process would have a serious financial impact, and that could affect future Festivals.

Trying to plan around and mitigate the impacts of the different scenarios is almost impossible for a Festival that relies on its musicians and audience who come (mainly) from Victoria, NSW and the ACT.

Sadly, many of our much-loved events such as the Festival Parade, Street Fest, Lantern Parade, Ecumenical Service, Jazz Quest, and our Trad Jazz highlights (noting that there are delays in the Twyford Hall and Theatre build project) cannot go ahead.

The Committee looked at various reduced formats, but ultimately felt it was not fair to either our musicians or jazz lovers.
We did not want our BIG 40th Festival to be the little 40th Festival.

So, our sincere apologies – this has been a difficult decision – but we want the Jazz Festival to continue, to thrive and be in good shape for the 40th and beyond.

We are now diverting our attention to planning for the BIG 40th Merimbula Jazz Festival in 2022, when we look forward to seeing our jazz friends return to Merimbula to enjoy the best of jazz and everything the town has to offer.

See you in Twenty Two!

Hello again Jazz Lovers

Welcome to our newsletter for the BIG 40th Merimbula Jazz Festival, held as usual on the Queen’s Birthday weekend (which for 2022 falls on the 10th to the 13th of June). The Festival will be held in 6 venues, all of which are in Merimbula and within easy walking distance of each other.

Our website will provide you with all the information you need to register – whether you are a band leader, musician or jazz lover.

The colours for 2022 are:
Ruby Red (for the BIG 40th), Yellow and Blue on White.

Yours in Jazz,
MJF Committee

How to Register

The easiest way for a Jazz Lover to register is to do everything on-line (with payment by PayPal). We have also included a complete set of fillable registration forms on our website. Simply download the appropriate form, enter your details and save your changes, and then send the completed form to us by email or post.

While you are on the website, take a moment to sign up to our email list and we will keep you informed with any updates.

You can pay your registration fee by PayPal, direct deposit, cheque or money order. Late registration for jazz lovers will be accepted at Jazz Office on your arrival. Forms and further information can be found on

What’s On


JazzFest, the programmed live music for the Merimbula Jazz Festival, will start at 5pm in all six venues, finishing at midnight.


The Festival will again feature the ever popular parade through town. Starting at 10.30am, it will finish at the outdoor stage with the Big Blow and a sing-along. The JazzFest program will re-start immediately afterwards, and continue through till midnight.
Market Street will remain closed to traffic for the remainder of the day, and will be the home of StreetFest – a fabulous street market with music, dancing and food.
This year, we are pleased to bring back the Lakeside Lantern Walk. Assembly will be at 5 pm at Spencer Park, Merimbula. The walk begins at 5:30 pm and makes its way into Beach Street, ending near Twyford Hall.
Jazz Quest will be held on Saturday evening at the Lakeview Hotel. This provides a great opportunity to hear the future trends of jazz and to be amazed at the talent on show from our young musicians.


This year, the ecumenical service will be back at the church, commencing at 11.00am. The JazzFest program will recommence at noon in all venues and continue through till midnight.


The Jazz Hatters Party is a fun-filled day to be held at Merimbula RSL and will feature a line up of popular bands. There will be prizes for the best hats and the Festival raffle will also be drawn. It is a community event and is free for all. You cannot bring your own food or drinks but there will be plenty available at a reasonable cost.

Don’t forget to take time to see the Jazz Art display at Club Sapphire. One of the paintings will feature as the basis for next year’s poster. The 2022 poster is based on the painting by SueEllen Yates and the colours for this year are based on those in the painting.

Our website has all the information you need for easy registration for the 2022 Festival.

We look forward to seeing you in Merimbula in 2022 for the BIG 40th Merimbula Jazz Festival.

Jazz Quest

Jazz Quest at the Lakeview Hotel will once again be part of the Merimbula Jazz Festival. Open to musicians 25 years of age and under – great cash prizes will be up for grabs. See the website or below for details of how to enter.

If you want to be a part of this fantastic opportunity for young musos, make sure you tick the box on the Musician Registration Form. In addition, please send your details (name, instrument, mobile number, postal and email address) to Paul Dion at Paul may be contacted on 02 6495 7411 or 0408 545 859.

Registration Process & Fees


There is no fee for bands but members must be fully registered.
There is a limited number of spots available and entries received after the closing date cannot be accepted.
Note that band registration must also rely on band leaders and musicians registering with their fee.
Unregistered musicians will not appear in the program book and will not be eligible for a disbursement.


Please note that you will not be registered until your form and your fee have both been processed.
Musicians also note that time shown for a private gig includes the time taken to get there and to return.


Musicians are responsible for the storage and safe keeping of their instruments at all times. The Merimbula Jazz Festival Inc. is not liable for loss or damage to any musical instrument during the Festival.


Jazz Lover Registration is $100 or Early Bird Special Rate $85 (registered by 21st March 2022)
Musicians performing on Official Program $10
Musician’s Partner or Parent $50
University and TAFE students $50
School Children (to Year 12) FREE


Friday Evening $40
Saturday Afternoon OR Evening $40
Sunday Afternoon OR Evening $40
Saturday or Sunday All Day $60

The best way to ensure the success of the 40th Festival is to register early, so please complete the appropriate Registration Forms and send them off to us as soon as you can.



The Jazz Office will be open from 9am – 5pm for registrations, collection of badges and programs.


The Jazz Office opens at 9am and will be open until late to catch the weary travellers from afar and post any late program changes. The Jazz Program commences at 5pm at all venues.


The traditional Festival Street Parade gets the mood pumping at 10:30am. Musicians assemble outside the Caltex Service Station at 10am. The Jazz Program commences at 12 noon at all venues.


The Ecumenical Church Service is at 11:00am. Check your program for more information. The Jazz Program commences at 12 noon at all venues.


The Jazz Hatters Party is at Merimbula RSL. This indoor event replaces the Jazz Picnic to avoid problems with inclement weather. The RSL will run a FREE shuttle bus throughout the day and further details will appear in the Festival program book and on our website.
Note that alcohol cannot be taken onto club premises and grounds, however there will be ample food and drink available for sale on the day.

Thank you for your past support. We’re preparing for a terrific BIG 40th festival in 2022 so make your plans early, bring your family and friends along, and enjoy all the delights of Merimbula with a weekend of Jazz in June.