Early bookings for Cheltenham

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The eleventh Cheltenham Jazz Festival will take place from 27 April-1 May 2006 and follows on from a very successful tenth birthday edition which headlined with Herbie Hancock and Ornette Coleman. Sponsored again this year by Jazzwise the programme is now deep in the planning stage and a full list of performers will be announced in the months ahead. But Jazzwise can exclusively reveal that the programme will include appearances in the Gloucestershire spa town by the McCoy Tyner Trio, singer Dianne Reeves, a commission for trumpeter Abram Wilson and an appearance by singer Claire Martin with the Lawrence Cottle Big Band. The festival bases itself around the Everyman Theatre and Town Hall with gigs also taking place in local bars and restaurants in the town. One main stay of the festival is the Jerwood Rising Stars programme which has been a galvanising force on the UK jazz scene in that it helps bring on a new generation of UK jazz talent. For more on the festival read Jazzwise in the run up to the event.