Every year at the beginning of March, the peaceful and picturesque town of Boquete becomes eclipsed by Jazz fans and the sounds of ‘tshs’, ’de’s’ and ‘dums‘ for the annual Boquete Jazz & Blues Festival.
The festival features top-class Blues acts in addition to Latin Jazz bands from Central and South America and elsewhere and the line up for 2012 does not fail to disappoint. Performies include Mitch Woods, Johnny Sansone, Andy Egert and his band, Bob Stroger, Ron Hacker, The Smoking Jazz Time club and Carlos Ubarte.
General Director Antonio Singh created the Boquete Jazz & Blues Festival in 2007 and has seen the festival grow from humble beginnings, into a well-known fixture on the calendar of musical events in Panama. Together with a small group of dedicated volunteers Antonio has succeeded in keeping the festival alive for 5 years.
This year, the festival gets off to special start with a Mardi Gras style parade; creative costumes, masks, umbrellas in true New Orleans style. The Parade Band will start at Central Park at 1pm to and start the parade route up Central Avenue to the Panamonte.
Dedicated to supporting musical education at schools in the Boquete area, 30% of the festival proceeds will be used to buy musical instruments and improve musical education in schools. As well as promoting the musical arts and tourism in the Chiriqui highlands, the festival attracts growing numbers of Panamanian as well as international music-aficionados to this beautiful area.
Situated 300 miles west of Panama City and 55 miles northeast of the Costa Rican border, Boquete can be reached by a short plane journey from Panama City to David, the province’s capital, followed by a taxi ride winding uphill through breathtaking scenery.