Festival Operations Manager (Contract Position)

Updated August 11, 2023

Start Date: October 2023 (Contract Position)

Location: Toronto (Remote)
*Please note that in-person attendance will be required on-site during Festival operating hours in June/July 2024 in addition to routine team working sessions and site visits.


We are seeking a highly motivated and skilled Festival Operations Manager to join our team on a contract basis. This role offers a unique opportunity to work within a dynamic and innovative environment, with hours that vary based on project cycles and your experience level.

As the Festival Operations Manager, you will play a pivotal role in orchestrating the operational aspects of our annual jazz festival and year round special events. You will work closely with the festival's executive team, various stakeholders, and third party suppliers to ensure the seamless execution of all festival-related activities. Your leadership, attention to detail, and ability to manage a diverse range of responsibilities will be crucial in maintaining the festival's reputation for excellence.


For the past 36 years, Toronto Jazz has presented some of the biggest artists – not only in jazz, but across the music industry. From The Roots, Janelle Monae, Diana Krall, Oscar Peterson, Aretha Franklin, De La Soul, to Tony Bennett we have done it all. Every year, Jazz Fest attracts over half a million people and we continue to see growth by evolving and staying connected to trends in music. In more recent years, our focus has been to broaden our audiences and expand into jazz related music such as hip-hop, R&B, funk, DJ’s, and soul. This expansion has set the foundation for our next generation of loyal Jazz Fest patrons and we’re excited to start planning for 2024!

Logistics Coordination
• Manage and oversee all logistical aspects of the festival, including vendor & artist logistics, site maps, equipment rentals, volunteer management, transportation, catering, and hotels. Manage contracting, purchasing, and budgeting processes.
• Collaborate with all teams to ensure a well-coordinated approach to festival operations.

Event Planning and Execution
• Collaborate with the artistic team to ensure the smooth scheduling and execution of performances.
• Coordinate labor requirements and oversee festival operation and production budgets.

Budget Oversight:
• Partner with the executive team to develop and manage the festival operating budget, monitoring expenses and identifying cost-saving opportunities without compromising the quality of the event.

Festival Production:
• Provide comprehensive oversight of all production elements to execute the festival to a high standard.
• Collaborate effectively with the Production teams to ensure schedules and budgets are adhered to.

Stakeholder Communication:
• Serve as the primary liaison between the festival's management, artists, vendors, sponsors, city planners, police, and the local community. 
• Uphold a standard of clear communication and cultivate positive relationships with all stakeholders.

On-Site Management:
• Oversee on-site operations, effectively managing unforeseen challenges and maintaining a seamless experience for attendees.
• Oversee both production and site crews, ensuring a focus on safety, effective communication, budget adherence, and overall crew satisfaction to produce top-tier concert experiences.

City Permits:
• Lead city relations and manage all permits and approvals, including street closures, park closures, noise exemptions, signage by-laws, and building permits.
• Develop comprehensive plans to secure city approval, encompassing emergency actions, waste management, traffic management, alcohol service, security, and police coordination. Ensure full compliance with city regulations and manage insurance requirements.

Health and Safety Compliance:
• Implement protocols to establish a secure festival environment.
Oversee all aspects of safety plans, site maps, security coverage, traffic coordination, paid duty officers, emergency medical services, and weather services.

Artist Relations:
• Oversee coordinating of artist festival advance and management of artist hospitality needs.
• Ensure artist needs are met including accommodations, transportation, show schedules, and immigration matters.

• Determine festival staffing needs, budgets, job descriptions, and competitive compensation rates.
• Create job postings, conduct interviews, hire and train festival contractors where required.

Food & Beverage Management:
• Lead the implementation of bar and food programs, managing logistics, budgets, and profit margins.

Post-Event Evaluation:
• Conduct a comprehensive evaluation of the festival's operations, identifying strengths and opportunities for improvement.
• Provide strategic recommendations to enhance the quality of future events.
• 3+ years of experience in event operations, preferably in music festivals or cultural events.
• Previous experience producing a music concert event.
• Experience managing staff or overseeing contractors.
• Strong organizational and project management skills, with the ability to multitask and prioritize effectively.
• Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, with the ability to collaborate with diverse stakeholders.
• Familiarity with health and safety regulations and risk management practices for large events.
• Proficiency in budget management and financial oversight.
• Ability to work under pressure and adapt to changing circumstances in a fast-paced environment.
• Passion for music and the arts, with an understanding of the unique needs of the industry.
• Experience working with volunteers and managing teams.
• Flexibility to work evenings, weekends, and extended hours leading up to and during the festival.
• A resident, currently living in Ontario who is legally authorized to work in Canada.
This is a contract position with flexible hours driven by project needs and your experience.

Anticipated start date is early October 2023 with a 10 month commitment requiring 16-40 hours per week. Compensation and timeline will be discussed during the interview process, aligning with your skills and contributions. The prorated annual salary for this role falls within the $80,000 CAD range, reflecting your working hours and experience level.
If you are a dedicated professional with a passion for music and event management, and you're excited about contributing to the success of the Toronto Jazz Festival, we encourage you to apply! TDJS is committed to diversity and inclusion. We encourage applications from individuals of all backgrounds and experiences. We thank all applicants for their interest, however only those selected will be contacted.
Please apply before August 31, 2023.