Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition: SASSY Awards

Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition: SASSY Awards

The eighth annual Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition, also known as the “SASSY Awards,” gives outstanding jazz singers a platform for embarking on a career in the music business!

“… rightfully one of the most anticipated events in jazz.” – Christian McBride

Held in honor of Newark’s “Divine One” – Sarah Vaughan – this exciting competition attracts gifted young talents from around the globe to perform in the finals on November 24 at NJPAC. Singers are evaluated by a panel of special guest judges, and rated for vocal quality, musicality, technique, performance, individuality, artistic interpretation, and ability to swing. The first-place winner receives a $5,000 cash prize and a performance slot at the 2020 Newport Jazz Festival.

“This esteemed event provides a platform for today’s outstanding jazz singers and gives audiences an early glimpse at tomorrow’s jazz stars,” writes Jazziz magazine.

Past winners have included Cyrille Aimée, Jazzmeia Horn, Laurin Talese and Quiana Lynell. This year’s event, which closes the 2019 TD James Moody Jazz Festival, will be hosted by WBGO-FM personality Gary Walker. Serving as judges are multi-GRAMMY™ winning bassist Christian McBride; acclaimed jazz vocalists Dee Dee Bridgewater and Jane Monheit; jazz publicist Monifa Brown; and jazz producer Matt Pierson.

Discover the jazz greats of tomorrow today at this amazing afternoon of performance.


Enter to win $5,000 and an opportunity to launch your career in music!

Deadline for Entry: September 9, 2019 at 5pm
Finalists will be announced on October 15
Competition Date: November 24, 2019 at 3pm


Sponsored by The Institute of Jazz Studies at Rutgers


NICO Kitchen + Bar will be open for this performance.