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International Jazz Festival to Celebrate 36th Anniversary of Irakere in Habana
This year’s Havana jazz festival, sponsored by the Cuban Institute of Music (ICM), will run February 12-15 at several locations in the Cuban capital and the world-famous Varadero beach resort.

In 1979, a series of successful concerts by Bobby Carcassés, one of Cuba’s jazz masters, and other musicians led to the first jazz festival, held in 1981 at the Casa de la Cultura of the Havana municipality of Plaza (from which the event took its name).

In 1967, a group of Cuban musicians began to develop an Afro-Cuban Latin Jazz rhythm, using electric instruments. In 1973, they formed the group Irakere, which means “vegetation” in Yoruba language.

“Renowned International jazz masters have confirmed their participation in Jazz Plaza 2009,” said Jazz Festival President, Master Jesús “Chucho” Valdés. These include, among others, Kash Killion, Daniel Martina, Luis Monge and Barroco.

Prestigious Cuban jazz bands and soloists will take part, among them Mayra Caridad Valdés, Bobby Carcassés, José Luis Cortés, Ernán López-Nussa and Lázaro Valdés, as well as young talents, who won awards at different contests like the Jojazz Festival.

The event’s program also includes the exhibit "Maestros del Jazz" (Jazz Masters), by Dutch photographer Caspari de Geus, the presentation of the book “New Yorkers’ Jazz”, by poet David López Ximeno and several CDs, released by the record company Colibrí of the Cuban Institute of Music (ICM).

The event’s agenda also includes a colloquium, workshops, master lectures and conferences by renowned figures of the world of culture.


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