After COVID knocked out last year's Twin Cities Jazz Festival, the popular event will return in a scaled-down combination of live and virtual performances June 24-27.

Grammy-winning vocalist Kurt Elling, an alum of Gustavus Adolphus College, is the big name, headlining the Belvedere tent at Crooners in Fridley on June 26.

Twin Cities singer Ashley DuBose, who competed on NBC's "The Voice," will kick off the event June 24 with a livestream performance from the Dakota in Minneapolis.

All other performances will take place at Crooners, either in the tent or indoors on the main stage.

Veteran tenor saxophonist Jerry Bergonzi, who played with Dave Brubeck and others, will bring his quartet June 25 and 27.

Also appearing will be such Twin Cities favorites as Connie Evingson, Jamecia Bennett, Andrew Walesch, Laura Caviani, Thomas West and the Jazz Women All Stars featuring Patty Peterson and Ginger Commodore.

Some performances are free, some ticketed, some streamed for free. For details, go to

Founded in 1998, TC Jazz Fest hopes to return in September 2021 to its traditional site of Mears Park in St. Paul's Lowertown, according to executive director Steve Heckler.

Twitter: @JonBream • 612-673-1719