Founded in 1997, Edgefest is an award­-winning annual avant­-garde jazz and creative new music festival with a unifying purpose: to explore new music created by today’s composer­s and performers from the United States and beyond. Under the direction of founder Dave Lynch, it began as a single­day event and is now a major 4­ day festival that includes collaborations and educational outreach.

EDGEFEST 22: Chicago-Out Kind of Town 
Almost a century ago, the Russian poet Vladimir Mayakovski wrote: “Then there is Chicago and this Chicago is different from all other cities—different not by its houses or its people, but by its very own, Chicago-style centered energy.” This vital industrial metropolis has long attracted people from all over the world, integrating them into the fabric of its being, and music has always played an important role in the social life of the Windy City, be it early jazz, blues, or house music or avant-garde improvisation. Edgefest 2018 will celebrate the more experimental sounds of Chicago, including artists of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM) and the iconic Art Ensemble of Chicago (AEC). Since the 1960’s these organizations and the artists associated with them have established new forms of music and new avenues for artistic self-determination and social involvement. Artists who currently populate the new music, avant jazz improvising scene in Chicago will be featured at the festival along with those who left their city but whose creativity will always be associated with their former home. All share that illusive “Chicago-style centered energy” that has been there ever since King Oliver brought his music there exactly a century ago.

Edgefest presents world-class cutting-edge jazz, creative improvisation, and category-defying music often ignored in the commercial marketplace. Artists/composers who participate in Edgefest and its various outreach activities increase the public’s appreciation for and understanding of this musical genre as well as promote their own unique compositions.

Edgefest creates a community spirit that brings together artists, audiences, and the neighborhood in a shared experience; not merely paying lip-service to the idea of local engagement, but making it the lifeblood of the festival with in-depth school workshops and an improvised music parade; offering the next generation fun and accessible introductions to uncompromising creativity.

More details coming soon! 

Edgepass – Pass to all edgefest events!

Daypass – Pass to edgefest events in the day that you have chosen.

The Microtel Inn and Suites is a sponsor of Edgefest, offering Kerrytown Concert House Edgefest artists and patrons a special Edgefest rate. An added Microtel benefit is seeing and meeting Edgefest artists as they come and go at the Microtel.

To make a reservation at the Microtel (3610 Plymouth Road-near US 23):

  1. Call the Microtel Reservations Desk at 734-997-9100
  2. Make a reservation with the front desk and be sure to mention that you are an Edgefest patron.

For more information on places to stay in Ann Arbor, see our Planning Your Visit page or go to visitannarbor.org

Planning Your Visit

Our historic Kerrytown neighborhood

As part of the 10th anniversary of Edgefest in 2006, KCH created a series of free public performance events which took place during the days and early evenings in restaurants, cafés and galleries in downtown Ann Arbor, featuring some of the areas most accomplished creative musicians.

The Fringe project, now a festival staple, has been very successful in moving creative and imaginative music making out of the conventional concert hall venue and into public spaces such as bars, restaurants and markets.

Stay tuned for more information about Fringe performances at this year’s Edgefest!

The festival depends on individual contributions from you! As an Edgepass holder who becomes an Edgehead, will be invited to the opening night dinner – always a gourmet feast in an informal, fun atmosphere.

Contact Kerrytown Concert House on how you can support Edgefest today! (734) 769-2999

Additional support for Edgefest is made possible in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. Art Works.

2019 Edgefest Line Up

Coming Soon