GRAMMY Award-winning bass player Christian McBride is to become the new artistic director of the Newport Jazz Festival.
GRAMMY Award-winning bass player Christian McBride is to become the new artistic director of the legendary Newport Jazz Festival, where he debuted in 1991 as a 19 year old. He takes over from George Wein who has been artistic director for its entire 62 years. McBride will begin immediately on festival strategy alongside Wein, taking over fully for the 2017 Newport Jazz Festival.
George Wein is now 90 and has also promised a donation of around $10 million from his estate towards Newport Jazz and Folk Festivals. He makes the appointment in recognition of his own age and and diminishing health.
Talking frankly about it he said, "Not many people can engineer their own demise. I've been working on this a few months with Christian. Nobody knew about it. I wanted to make sure Christian was the right person."