The IJFO is an umbrella
organization to currently 14 leading jazz festivals worldwide.
The members do not compete territorially and are situated at times
which allow for the touring of common projects.
The history of IJFO goes back more than 20 years: Several European
jazz festivals promoters (Paul Acket, Norbert Gamsohn, Jyrki Kangas,
Claude Nobs and Fritz Thom) met in Paris in 1982 to discuss a
tour with Miles Davis.
Three promoters emerged out of this Paris meeting as the core
of what became the EJFO (European Jazz Festivals Organization):
Paul Acket (North Sea), Jyrki Kangas (Pori) and Fritz Thom (Vienna).
In 1988, Paul Acket invited 7 European jazz festivals to meet
in New York, among them were Molde, North Sea, Pori, Vienna (Austria)
and Vitoria. This was the birth of the EJFO. Shortly after that,
Umbria Jazz and Vienne (France) joined, followed a bit later by
Istanbul and Montreux.
After Montreal joined the organization a few years ago, the
time was finally right in 2002, after Monterey and Vancouver came
on board, for the original European association to go international.
This was the birth of the IJFO - the International Jazz Festivals
Since 2001, the IJFO sponsors an international jazz award. This
award is presented in partnership with the IAJE (International
Associaton for Jazz Education) at their annual conferences and
rewards upcoming talents in the genre of jazz.