saskatoon jazz festival

Revellers packed the Bessborough Gardens Friday night. (CBC)

Organizers at the SaskTel Saskatchewan Jazz Festival say ticket sales are going through the roof this year.

Preliminary numbers say ticket sales are expected to top out at 25,000. 

That beats last year's ticket sales and it's miles ahead of where the festival was at when Artistic Director Kevin Tobin took over in 2000. Back then, the festival only sold a total of 7000 tickets.

Organizers say big acts are the reason for the increase.

"For example, Lauryn Hill sold out in a matter of hours, and that has never happened in the history of the festival," said Marketing Director Jacqueline Conway. "Previous to that, John Legend sold out in about a week, and that was a record-breaking thing. Then we had Ben Harper sell out in a three week window."

Conway says the festival tries to be as diverse as it can.

"We've tried to keep it very diverse in terms of the styles of music we're presenting, so it can appeal to as many people as possible," she said. 

By the numbers

Here's a quick list of numbers that sum up the SaskTel Saskatchewan Jazz Festival:

Number of beers sold: 22,000
Number of volunteers: 425
Musicians performing: 650
Number of festival goers: 85,000