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Press Reminder: EFG London Jazz Festival returns to the Barbican this November with a full line-up of some of the world’s most talented contemporary jazz musicians, including free public performances and film screenings – plus new support announcements

EFG London Jazz Festival 2023

The EFG London Jazz Festival returns to the Barbican this November, with live performances from some of the world’s most talented contemporary jazz musicians, alongside screenings and free gigs for everyone to enjoy.

Presented by the Barbican’s Associate Producer Serious, the festival comprises hundreds of gigs across the city, seeing jazz popping up everywhere, from concert halls to street corners. The Barbican will host nineteen events from 10 – 19 November 2023 including FreeStage performances in the Barbican foyers, a collaboration with the Barbican’s Resident Orchestra the London Symphony Orchestra, and legends and newcomers alike in the Barbican Hall, Milton Court Concert Hall and the Barbican’s public foyers, as well as performances from Guildhall Jazz musicians.


Fri 10 Nov – Sunday 19 Nov 2023

Various venues

The programme of live performances features an electrifying line-up of global stars, jazz masters, cutting edge ensembles, moving tributes, special collaborations, and the finest and freshest music from the London scene. Festival events at the Barbican include concerts in the hall, a FreeStage programme as well as screenings in our cinemas.  Full listings details below and here.

  • Musician, composer, arranger, and the ‘father of Ethio-jazz’ Mulatu Astatke takes to the Hall stage in his 80th year to open the EFG London Jazz Festival 2023 at the Barbican. (10 Nov)
  • Renowned American drummer and producer Makaya McCraven presents an evening of musical exploration at the Barbican, joined by the London Contemporary Orchestra, conducted by Robert Ames. This special performance will see McCraven perform his boundary-pushing album In These Times in the Barbican Hall. (11 Nov)
  • Contemporary classical composer and pianist Joep Beving returns to his piano solo roots with Hermetism Light Sculpture, a live audio-visual performance in collaboration with contemporary artists Boris Acket and Merijn Versnel in Milton Court Concert Hall. (12 Nov)
  • Following the success of MoodSwing in 2022, globally acclaimed saxophonist Joshua Redman returns to the Barbican to lead a remarkable new group in an evening of captivating jazz, performing his latest project WHERE ARE WE. The performance will feature vocalist Gabrielle Cavassa joined by Nicholas Payton (trumpet), Kurt Rosenwinkel (guitar), Peter Bernstein (guitar), and Joel Ross (vibraphone). (12 Nov)
  • Renowned Japanese composer and pianist Hiromi takes to the stage in the Barbican Hall with a performance promising to push the boundaries of jazz, classical, and pop. (13 Nov)
  • American saxophonist and music producer Sam Gendel will take to the stage at Milton Court Concert Hall, bringing his unique approach to jazz and experimental music together in a one-of-a-kind performance. For this performance Gendel will be joined by Philippe Melanson on electronic percussion. (14 Nov)
  • World-renowned Brazilian musician Sergio Mendes brings his iconic mix of bossa nova and samba to the Barbican Hall. (15 Nov)
  • One of the most important and innovative recording artists of our time, the late saxophonist Pharoah Sanders, is honoured in The Harvest Time Project at the Barbican, part of a global tribute series to his 1977 record Pharoah. Following Sanders' passing in 2022, this project reinterprets the iconic track Harvest Time. The Barbican performance features Brazilian singer Domenico Lancellotti, original Pharoah guitarist Tisziji Muñoz, musical director Joshua Abrams, and London-based progressive jazz trio Ill Considered with more special guests to be announced. (16 Nov)
  • In his debut performance with the London Symphony Orchestra, virtuoso cellist, singer, and percussionist Abel Selaocoe brings South African and European traditions together with his own music and jazz-flecked pieces by Gary Carpenter and Bartók. The performance will be led by dynamic composer Duncan Ward, preceded by free concert performances by Guildhall Jazz musicians in the Barbican Foyers. (16 Nov)
  • After an unforgettable sold-out performance in 2021, Charles Lloyd, the iconic American saxophonist, flautist, and early global-music pioneer, returns to the Barbican with his new trio of pianist Gerald Clayton and guitarist Marvin Sewell. (17 Nov).
  • Miles Davis’ legendary album Bitches Brew is reimagined in the first-ever performance from British jazz super group London Brew. (18 Nov)
  • A rising star of the jazz world, American singer Samara Joy makes her Barbican debut in an exclusive one-night-only performance. (19 Nov)


Visitors can enjoy free-to-watch daytime performances on our FreeStage throughout the EFG London Jazz Festival week. The FreeStage is located on Level G of the Barbican Foyers where visitors can come and go as they please.

  • Melbourne International Jazz Festival presents an evening of ethno-jazz and instrumental electronic jazz performances featuring the Zela Margossian Trio and Brekky Boy. (11 Nov, Midday)
  • BBC Radio 3's flagship jazz program, J to Z, which celebrates the finest in jazz across past, present, and future, presents a special episode from the FreeStage in the Barbican foyer. This unique show will feature some of the most thrilling jazz artists of today. (12 Nov, 1pm)
  • Jazz in Ireland: In partnership with Ireland's leading advocate and promoter of jazz and improvised music Improvised Music Company, experience a sampling of Ireland's finest improvised music through two distinctive interpretations of a saxophone trio without chords. (18 Nov, 2pm)
  • Jazz North presents a showcase featuring emerging jazz talents from Northern UK regions through Northern Line, Jazz North's acclaimed talent development programme. (19 Nov, 3pm)


  • As is tradition, Jazz on Screen returns to Barbican Cinema complementing EFG London Jazz Festival with three rarely seen films that shine a cinema light on some of the modern jazz legends in an era of change and creativity, the 1950s and 60s. Screenings include Ron Mann’s Imagine the Sound (11 Nov) with a special introduction by writer, comedian and documentary filmmaker Stewart Lee about the avant-garde, free jazz movement; Sven Klang’s Combo (12 Nov) by Swedish filmmaker Stellan Olsson, about a small dance band which explores a clash between tradition and innovation, and the power of music to shape destinies, with an introduction by film curator, critic and filmmaker Ehsan Khoshbakht; and Umetsugu Inoue’s The Stormy Man (14 Nov), an atmospheric view of 50s Japan, following an angry young man aspiring to make it in the competitive and occasionally violent world Ginza’s seedy jazz nocturnal clubs, set to a lively score by the prolific composer Seitaro Omori



Beyond the concerts at the Barbican, the EFG London Jazz Festival extends to many other venues in London. You can view the full festival line up here.


The creativity and originality of the Guildhall Jazz community is celebrated in the return of the School’s Jazz Festival in November, which is presented in partnership with EFG London Jazz Festival.

Three afternoons and evenings of performances in Milton Court Concert Hall will be headlined by Ari Hoenig (13 November), Nikki Yeoh (15 November) and Zara McFarlane (18 November) with a wealth of performances by Guildhall Jazz students, alumni and special guests including NYJO showcased throughout the days.

These performances, part of Milton Court’s 10th anniversary celebrations, are free of charge to attend and will be live streamed.

As part of the festival, Guildhall Jazz musicians also perform in Barbican Foyer ahead of the LSO’s Barbican Hall concert A World of Possibilities – Abel Selaocoe and Duncan Ward (16 Nov).

The Guildhall Jazz Festival line up can be viewed here.