By Mike Bedigan, PA Los Angeles Correspondent
Contemporary stars Sam Smith and Lil Nas X will join musical greats Bob Dylan and Lionel Richie on the line-up for this year’s Montreux Jazz Festival.
The 57th edition of the prestigious Swiss festival is set to feature musicians across all genres and generations.
Organisers say 2023’s “eclectic, free-flowing programme”, combining the music industry’s most prominent names and “legends in the making”, exemplifies what the festival is “all about”.
It will take place from June 30 to July 15 on the Lake Geneva shoreline, with performances across the festival’s two venues, the Auditorium Stravinski and Montreux Jazz Lab.
Grammy award-winning singer Smith will perform at the Auditorium Stravinski for the first time, eight years after their performance at the Jazz Lab.
“This festival reminds me why I love music so much,” they said.
“If you haven’t been to Montreux for the festival, please go. It will change your life.”
Smith is scheduled to take the stage as the opening act in the Auditorium Stravinski on July 6.
Their performance at the venue follows that of fellow contemporary pop star Lil Nas X, who shot to fame following his viral hit song Old Town Road in 2019, on July 5.
US superstar Dylan will return to the stage at the festival for the first time in 10 years, to present his latest album Rough and Rowdy Ways, which has already achieved critical acclaim.
The veteran singer-songwriter’s show will take place on July 1 – the second day of the festival.
Other big names set to perform at the Auditorium Stravinski include Billy Idol, Iggy Pop and Janelle Monae.
Multiple Grammy award-winner Jon Batiste will also perform on July 9, which is set to be his only European show this summer.
Throughout the festival, performances by Lionel Richie, Simply Red and Seal, will bring together three decades of hit-makers at the crossroads of soul and pop at the venue.
Elsewhere, the Montreux Jazz Lab will celebrate its 10-year anniversary with a similarly star-studded line-up.
The venue has a longstanding history of hosting the brightest talents before they achieve global success, having previously seen performances from Ed Sheeran, Dua Lipa, Kendrick Lamar and Rag‘n’Bone Man in the early stages of their careers.
This year British talent will feature heavily once again, with Bristol-based punk rockers Idles taking to the stage alongside award-winning duo Wet Leg on July 10.
Maisie Peters, Loyle Carner and Welsh electronic duo Overmono are also scheduled to perform.
The Montreux Jazz Festival’s special relationship with South American music is well represented in the 2023 programme, with performances by two generations of artists.
Columbia’s newest superstar Maluma and Gilberto Gil, the first Brazilian artist to have graced the Montreux stage in 1978, will perform on July 11 and July 7 respectively.
For the festival’s closing night, DJ, composer and producer Mark Ronson will curate and create a unique collaborative concert, at the invitation of Audemars Piguet and the Montreux Jazz Festival.
The show will see the renowned musician bring together on stage artists from his artistic family, including special guests Yebba and Lucky Daye.
Tickets for the 2023 Montreux Jazz Festival are due to go on sale from April 6th at 11am.