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NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — For the second year in a row, the New Orleans Jazz Fest has been canceled due to COVID-19. The event sent out a release at 2 p.m. on Sunday announcing the cancellation after weeks of surging coronavirus cases has put Louisiana on the nation’s radar as one of the worst state’s affected by the fourth surge.

The statement read:

As a result of the current exponential growth of new COVID cases in New Orleans and the
region and the ongoing public health emergency, we must sadly announce that the 2021
edition of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival presented by Shell, scheduled to take
place October 8 –17, 2021, will not occur as planned. We now look forward to next spring,
when we will present the Festival during its traditional timeframe. Next year’s dates are
April 29 – May 8, 2022.

Ticketholders for both Festival weekends (including those that rolled over their tickets
from 2020) will receive an email this week with details about the ticket refund and rollover
process. All Wednesday, October 13 tickets will be automatically refunded.
In the meantime, we urge everyone to follow the guidelines and protocols put forth by
public health officials, so that we can all soon experience together the joy that is Jazz Fest.

Jazz & Heritage Festival

Headliners for this year’s event, which was scheduled over two full weekends and a first-ever Wednesday this October (8-17) at the New Orleans Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, included 1989 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductees, the Rolling Stones, as well as two-time inductee Stevie Nicks, along with a jam-packed lineup of local and international recording artists covering most genres of music, including blues, gospel, jazz, zydeco and rock.

Despite the cancellation, Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts will likely miss the band’s upcoming U.S. tour to allow him to recover from an unspecified medical procedure.

All ticketholders, including those with rollover tickets from 2020, will receive an email regarding refunds and rollover processes this week. According to the organizers, all Wednesday, Oct. 13, tickets for the Rolling Stones will be automatically refunded.

The 2020 edition was postponed in March of last year at the peak of the first surge in the pandemic. The event joined other notable festivals at the time such at the French Quarter Fest, as well as Buku and Coachella. In January, Jazz Fest announced it would move the event to the fall and host it in October.

According to the most recent release, the 2022 Jazz Fest will return to its normal spring schedule with dates set for April 29 – May 8.