Finnish fans soak up Pori Jazz Festival

Finnish fans soak up Pori Jazz FestivalThe 2014 Pori Jazz Festival proved a huge hit with Finnish fans, despite the fact that organisers banned spectators from bringing their own alcohol.

This year’s festival, in the western municipality of Pori, attracted 60,000 fans in total between Thursday and Saturday as music lovers soaked up the sun and enjoyed the many acts on show. It was the largest attendance recorded at the Kirjurinluoto Arena in five years, and this after organisers had reduced the number of days from four to three.

Unsurprisingly, Saturday was the most popular day, with 24,000 fans from Finland and beyond turning up at the arena to watch acts such as rock legend Patti Smith, jazz musician Jamie Callum and pop star James Blunt. Thursday evening was also a huge hit, with around 20,000 spectators turning out to watch Bob Dylan and Suzanne Vega among others. The star attraction on Friday was UK act the Pet Shop Boys, who played to 16,000 visitors.

The Pori Jazz Festival featured a range of different music genres, although one of the three stages was dedicated solely to jazz. The festival is one Europe’s oldest jazz festivals having been first held in July 1966, when 1,500 spectators showed up. In the early years of the 21st century, audience numbers were surpassing 120,000, before declining in recent years.