Hamptons Jazz Fest - Festival Launch


The Church Thu, Jun 29, 2023 5:30 PM



THURSDAY JUNE 29th | 5:30 PM  - 8 PM
Social Hour:
5:30 PM - 6:30 PM
6:30 PM - 8 PM 


Student/Young Patron (18 and Under):
*Ticket includes one comp drink


It must be summer because Hamptons Jazz Fest is launching its 2023 season at The Church! Hamptons Jazz Fest, produced by The Jam Session Inc., is a series of performances that bring together world-class musicians in the fields of jazz, Latin, and world music to the East End of Long Island. Kicking off the season on June 29th is vocalist Nicole Zuraitis accompanied by GRAMMY-nominated Israeli drummer and composer Dan Pugach, and his award-winning nine-piece ensemble (nonet). The nonet’s compositions are conceived for six horns and a trio rhythm section. To kick off the season, this concert will include festive food and drink available for purchase at the event.


Zuraitis is the premier vocalist for both the Birdland Big Band and the Dan Pugach Nonet; she headlines at iconic NYC jazz clubs like Dizzy’s Club, Birdland, the Blue Note, the Carlyle and the late, great 55 Bar. The nonet focuses on original music, though the arrangement of “Jolene” by Dolly Parton from the 2018 debut album Dan Pugach Nonet - Plus One was GRAMMY nominated for Best Arrangement for Instruments with Vocals. When asked about the nonet’s performance at On Stage at Kingsborough, Executive Director Anna Becker stated, “The Dan Pugach Nonet delivered a gorgeous evening of joyful jazz. Nicole’s vocals and the band’s musicianship is just outstanding, whether charming us with standards or taking our breath away with original compositions. The huge crowd was just thrilled!”



Similar to last year, The Church’s studio/ground level will transform into a jazz club, filled with the talented sounds of the nonet. Food and drinks will be available for purchase. Join us in celebrating the beginning of what we know will be a wonderfully diverse season with a variety of jazz bands from all over the world.


(Photo Courtesy of the Artist) 

Nicole is the premier vocalist for both the Birdland Big Band and the Dan Pugach Nonet and headlines iconic NYC jazz clubs like Dizzy’s Club at Lincoln Center, Birdland, the Blue Note, the Carlyle and the late, great 55 bar. Her co-produced collaboration “How Love Begins” with bassist and 8x Grammy Award winner Christian McBride is set to release July 7th, 2023, featuring all-original compositions and the talents of some of the jazz world’s best. She has appeared as a featured soloist with the Savannah Philharmonic, Asheville Symphony and other noted pop orchestras, as well as supported with piano and iconic singers such as Morgan James and Darren Criss. Nicole regularly plays Birdland, The Blue Note, Dizzy’s Club at Jazz at Lincoln Center, The Carlyle, 54 Below, and 55 Bar in New York City. As a recording artist, Nicole has released four albums as leader, including 2020’s All Wandering Hearts on Dot Time Records. She is also a member of the modern jazz supergroup Ryan Keberle and Catharsis, as well as SONICA with Thana Alexa and Julia Adamy.  

(Photo by Ben O'Brien Smith)

Dan Pugach is a GRAMMY® nominated Israeli drummer and composer. He moved to the United States in 2006 to pursue a career in music after three years of service in the IDF playing drums for The Air Force Band and attending the Rimon School of Jazz at the same time. His nine-piece ensemble focuses on original music, though his arrangement of “Jolene”/Parton from his 2018 debut album Dan Pugach Nonet - Plus One was GRAMMY® nominated for Best Arrangement for Instruments with Vocals. Dan won two ASCAP Young Jazz Composer Awards in 2011 and 2013 and is the 2019 recipient of the BMI Charlie Parker Composition Prize/Manny Albam Commission as part of the BMI Jazz Composers Workshop and the 2021 grantee of the Café Royal Cultural Foundation Music for producing his second album with his big band. His nonet showcased at the 2023 National Chamber Music America Conference in New York City. https://www.danpugach.com 



Hamptons Jazz Fest, produced by The Jam Session, Inc., is a series of performances that bring world-class musicians in the fields of jazz, Latin, and world music to a diverse cross-section of populations on the east end of Long Island, held in iconic venues throughout July, August, and September. HJF also stages a Winter Series during the remainder of the year. They present dozens of concerts at no or low cost and collaborate with other non-profit cultural organizations like OLA of Eastern Long Island, the Parrish Art Museum, The Church in Sag Harbor, East Hampton LTV, the Bridgehampton Childcare and Recreation Center, the Shinnecock Nation, and others to engage the diverse groups from the East End in our performance and educational events. 



The Jam Session, Inc. is a not-for-profit production and education arts organization that produces live jazz music, including Latin and world music, through performances, recording, broadcast, and educational opportunities for the people of the East End of Long Island, primarily Eastern Suffolk County. The Jam Session brings the music to the community it serves in various ways, including at partnering venues that are accessible and well served to the public. The Jam Session’s ultimate purpose is to bring these diverse groups together through music and have shared public experiences and thus nourish the roots of the community…its people.