39th Annual ‘Jazz’SAlive’ Festival

The San Antonio Parks Foundation preserves the art of jazz

Kylar Royer, Contributing Writer

This past weekend, the 39th annual Jazz’SAlive festival was held at Travis Park in downtown San Antonio. The festival was a two-day-long event featuring over 20 jazz artists, including the UTSA Jazz Ensemble. The free event was hosted by the San Antonio Parks Foundation — a nonprofit organization with a mission to support and enhance parks in the greater San Antonio area. 

While the festival was free to the public, the proceeds from food, beverages and VIP sales benefited the foundation to support their community effort to improve the residents’ quality of life. In addition to the festival, the foundation hosted two separate events — an old-fashioned swing dance after-party at the St. Anthony Hotel sky terrace and a Jazz’SAlive Sunday concert at Travis Park Church. 

The Jazz’SAlive festival aims to showcase a collection of artists and expose the community to the preservation of the art of jazz. It is the largest free jazz festival in the United States and has hosted Grammy-nominated jazz groups such as the Pedrito Martinez group and Sammy Miller and the Congregation this year. 

Throughout the event’s entirety, the attendees participated in an immersive environment filled with vibrant energy. The festival recently began expanding its genres of jazz, bringing diverse groups of people together and not limiting guests to one category of music. Tomar and the FCs, a band hailing from Austin, Texas, performed rich soul music — a subgenre of jazz. Tomar Williams’ stage presence was felt throughout the park, turning the heads of many. Shortly after the band began their performance, festival attendees got up from their seats and started dancing around freely. Williams captured the audience with relatable lyrics, funky rhythms and powerful vocals. 

The Jazz’SAlive festival will return for its 40th anniversary next year and will continue to draw in an audience who appreciates jazz. The event is constantly evolving and always looking to captivate the community in the art while supporting the preservation of our beautiful city. 

To learn more about the Jazz’SAlive Festival, visit the San Antonio Parks Foundation’s website at https://saparksfoundation.org/event/jazzsalive/.