Jazz In The Gardens kicks off Friday in Miami Gardens

MIAMI GARDENS, FLA. (WSVN) - Event coordinators for the annual Jazz In The Gardens event is giving 7News an inside look into what’s to come from the festival this weekend.

The two-day event is about to get started Friday evening in Miami Gardens, and jazz enthusiasts have a lot to look forward to.

Jazz In The Gardens kicked off the festival with an opening party at Hard Rock Stadium.

A panel of stars and city leaders told fans what they can expect this year. “Jazz In The Gardens attracts the best R&B and jazz musicians,” said one panelist.

Miami’s own Oscar-winning “Moonlight” star, Jaden Piner took part in the panel and is also expected to receive a key to the City of Miami Gardens at the festival, on Sunday.

“It’s very exciting ’cause a couple years ago, I wasn’t thinking about all this,” Piner said. “I was just prepared to play basketball, but now? Amazing.”

A star-studded lineup will take the stage on Saturday and Sunday, just outside Hard Rock Stadium.

The artists range from Miami artist A. Randolph to R&B stars like Robin Thicke, Common and LL Cool J to jazz singer Andra Day.

“I’m gonna bring some urban soul, some pop,” said artist A. Randolph.

Leading up to performances, event coordinators took it beyond the music with a film, music and art conference at Florida International University’s Biscayne Bay campus.

Celebrities like Miami Heat forward Chris Bosh took part in the panel discussion. “It’s just a diverse group of knowledge, you know, so many people can benefit from,” Bosh said. “It’s a great thing that FIU is putting on this thing, and hopefully it will grow in the near future.”

Over the festival’s 12-year history, Jazz In The Gardens has become a must-see. “This started as a concert in the parking lot for a couple hundred people, and now it’s gonna draw thousands of people from around the world,” said Miami Gardens Mayor Oliver Gilbert.

The two-day festival starts on Saturday at 3 p.m. and runs until Sunday.

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