World's largest jazz festival in Montreal cancelled due to pandemic

Dominique Fils-Aimee performs with her band on day 10 of the 2019 Montreal Jazz Festival in Montreal, Canada. (Photo by Roberta Parkin/Getty Images)
Dominique Fils-Aimee performs with her band on day 10 of the 2019 Montreal Jazz Festival in Montreal, Canada. (Photo by Roberta Parkin/Getty Images)

This year's Montreal Jazz Festival, the world's largest, and other popular summer jamborees in Canada's francophone metropolis were cancelled on Friday due to the Covid-19 pandemic, organisers announced.

It had been scheduled to start on 25 June.

"This decision, which was made with our private partners and the government, was not an easy one, but it had become necessary in order to protect the public, the artists and our employees," the Jazz Festival's general manager Jacques Primeau said in a statement.

The Francos de Montreal music festival, which is put on by the same group and was scheduled for 12 June, was also cancelled, he said.

The pair of summer festivals attract hundreds of thousands of visitors each year to Canada's second-largest city.

Locally The Cape Town Jazz Festival, which was scheduled to take place in March, was also postponed. In America popular festival Coachella was also postponed and many musicians have cancelled or postponed thier tours. 

Organisers of the hugely popular Just for Laughs Festival, usually held in late July, also announced Friday that they were postponing the comedic performances until the fall.

And a cycling event, the Tour de l'ile, scheduled for 7 June, was cancelled.

Compiled by Alex Isaacs.