21. May 2021 - 18:00 till 21:30
The Pump House Theatre and Arts Centre
United KingdomWatford5 Local Board Road

Watford Jazz Festival Gala Concert featuring Emma Smith, The Pump House Theatre and Arts Centre, Friday, 21. May 2021

Watford Jazz Festival Gala Concert celebrating the best of jazz now and for the future featuring the Emma Smith Quartet

About this Event

A special evening in the historic Pump House Theatre featuring the Emma Smith Quartet plus fabulous jazz musicians of the future including from the National Youth Jazz Orchestra and Purcell School.

Watford has produced many wonderful musicians over the years, with several going through the Purcell School in Bushey and the National Youth Jazz Orchestra before striking out on highly successful and often international careers.

This gala concert is an opportunity to hear both the talent of tomorrow and share in the acclaimed vocal gifts of Emma Smith with a rare local performance.

With a full bar running from 7pm and a pop-up bistro kitchen serving cold creole treats, this promises to be a memorable Friday evening both to relax and enjoy the very best of young jazz - getting a taste of the vibrant modern UK scene.

About the artists

Emma Smith

Emma is an award-winning jazz vocalist who has shared the stage with Kurt Elling, Michael Buble, Georgie Fame, Goldie and the late Sir John Dankworth. As one third of the Puppini Sisters she has appeared on Graham Norton, Strictly Come Dancing, The One Show and The Royal Variety Show.

She grew up in Hertfordshire and won the first ever vocal jazz scholarship to Purcell, attended the Royal Academy of Music and won the Worshipful Company of Musicians' Jazz Medal.

She has sung at jazz festivals throughout the world including, London, Montreux and North Sea, where audiences find it impossible not to share in her infectious and joyful spirit. Alongside Soweto Kinch she presents 'Jazz Now' on BBC Radio 3.


Since founding in 1965, the National Youth Jazz Orchestra has grown into a multi-faceted organisation working in jazz education across the country. Alumni are many and famous including Yazz Ahmed, Steve Arguelles, Joe Stilgoe, Gwilym Simcock, Dave O'Higgins, Stan Sulzman, Dennis Rollins, Winston Rollins, Jacqui Hicks and Amy Winehouse.

Purcell School for Young Musicians

The Purcell School Bushey boasts a well-established and flourishing jazz department. Recent graduates include the multiple Grammy Award winning jazz pianist Jacob Collier, Kit Downes, Jake Labazzi and Seth Tackaberry.


Concert Sponsored by Future Interiors

Emma Smith Quartet sponsored by Classic Motor Events

Event promoted by the Watford Jazz Festival 20-23 May 2021 - encouraging live local jazz for all.

Event times

19:00 Kitchen and bar open, with live jazz in the foyer

19:45 Purcell Ensemble

20:15 NYJO Quintet

21.00 Interval

21.15 A complete set from Emma Smith and her quartet

22.15 Live music ends, venue closes 23.00


With a free car park adjacent, the Pump House Theatre is just a 2-minute walk from Watford High Street Overground Station, and a 5-minute cab ride from Watford Junction Train Station.

Friday, 21. May 2021, The Pump House Theatre and Arts Centre, Watford Jazz Festival Gala Concert featuring Emma Smith

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