Jazz Fest uncertain for 2010

The Cayman Islands Department of Tourism, which promotes
Jazz Fest, has not heard whether the event will be held this year, said Public
Relations Manager Gina Matthews.

“We are currently waiting on an official statement from
the (tourism) ministry,” she said. “I don’t know. There are other pressing
issues being dealt with by the premier
and the government.”

Ms Matthews said there should soon be an announcement
about whether the event will go ahead, and that if the
Department of Tourism gets word the Jazz Fest will take place, it could put its
machinery in motion fairly quickly and promote the event .

“Once we know, we can throw everything at it,” she said.

“Though I do think that things were a bit ahead of
schedule last year.”

The lineup for last year’s event was announced on 13 May.

The government has pre-booked Camana Bay as a venue for
the event for the past year.

However, the marketing department at Camana Bay could not
give any details about this year’s
Jazz Fest.

The three-day Cayman Jazz Fest was launched in June 2004
and was held at the Pageant Beach site.

It was later moved to an early December time slot. Last
year’s festival was the first at Camana Bay. 
With a lineup that included Alicia Keys, Pebo Bryson and Keith Sweat,
the event set attendance records, including more than 6,500 people the night Ms
Keys performed.

Funding the Jazz Fest could be part of the reason for the
indecision on this year’s event.

The cost of staging Jazz Fest last year was $1,149,092,
according to a response to a Freedom of Information request.

Included in this figure was a budget allocation of
$409,537.50 for the foreign artists.

A Freedom of Information request about the financial
profit or loss of last year’s event has not yet been answered.

Efforts to reach the
Ministry of Tourism for comment were unsuccessful.

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