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Sixth Annual Haitian Jazz Festival Kicks Off January 20

The Haitian government, national and international organizations, and private sector firms have joined to sponsor the Sixth Annual Port-au-Prince International Jazz Festival from January 20–28, 2012. For the first time, this year’s festival also includes an event outside the capital, the inaugural concert in Les Cayes featuring Haitian stars Claude Carré and Thurgot Théodat.

Festival sponsors include the Ministry of Culture and Communication, Ministry of Tourism, the Municipality of Port-au-Prince, and the embassies of Brazil, Canada, Chile, Dominican Republic, Germany, Mexico, Spain, United States, and Switzerland.

In its feature article on the festival, Le Nouvelliste noted that sponsorship “demonstrates involvement in the country’s reconstruction not only in terms of rebuilding infrastructure but also in relaunching Haitian culture.”

The festival will feature 20 artists from around the world performing at five different locations in Port-au-Prince. The full concert schedule is available at www.papjazzhaiti.org.

Performers will include Jacques Schwarz-Bart and Jazz Racine Haïti; German saxophonist Angelika Niecer; Kellylee Evans, 2011 winner of the Canadian Smooth Jazz Award; percussionist Rubem Dantas of Spain; Guadeloupan pianist Jonathan Jurion; trumpeter Hans Kennel of Switzerland; the Jed Levy Quartet from the United States; Mexico’s Aguamala; Rafael Mirabal from the Dominican Republic; Batuke Samba Funk from Brazil; and Chile’s Maraquetta. Haitian performers will also include Chardavoine, Felina Backer, Lord’s Power, Ex-Key, Miu, and Pawòl Jazz Tanbou.

Additional event sponsors include the Institut Français d’Haiti, Fokal, Radio et Télé Métropole, Fondation Canez Auguste, and nearly a dozen Haitian businesses.

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