United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Director-General Irina Bokova and famed jazz musician Herbie Hancock have announced the lineup for the fifth annual International Jazz Day, which will be celebrated around the world on April 30.
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama will host the 5th annual International Jazz Day All-Star Global Concert at the White House on April 29. The event will be broadcast on International Jazz Day as a one-hour prime-time ABC television special, “Jazz at the White House,” and streamed on the United Nations, UNESCO, U.S. State Department and White House websites.
The concert will feature an extraordinary array of artists from around the world paying tribute to the truly American art form of jazz.
Washington, D.C. has been selected to serve as the 2016 Global Host City, and International Jazz Day programs are made possible by Toyota, the 2016 Lead Partner. Presented each year on April 30 in partnership with the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz, International Jazz Day highlights the power of jazz as a force for freedom and creativity, promotes intercultural dialogue through respect and understanding, and unites people from all corners of the globe.
The day is recognized on the official calendars of both UNESCO and the United Nations.
The All-Star Global Concert at the White House will feature stellar performances by Joey Alexander, Terence Blanchard, Kris Bowers, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Till Brönner, Terri Lyne Carrington, Chick Corea, Jamie Cullum, Kurt Elling, Aretha Franklin, Robert Glasper, Buddy Guy, Herbie Hancock, Zakir Hussain, Al Jarreau, Diana Krall, Lionel Loueke, Hugh Masekela, Christian McBride, John McLaughlin, Pat Metheny, Marcus Miller, James Morrison, Danilo Pérez, Rebirth Brass Band, Dianne Reeves, Lee Ritenour, David Sánchez, Wayne Shorter, Esperanza Spalding, Sting, Trombone Shorty, Chucho Valdés, Bobby Watson, Ben Williams and others, with further details to be announced shortly. John Beasley will serve as the evening’s musical director.
“We are thrilled that President Obama and Michelle Obama are hosting the International Jazz Day All-Star Global Concert at the White House, and are truly grateful for their commitment to jazz and its role in building bridges and uniting people around the world,” said Hancock, who also is a goodwill ambassador for UNESCO. “Over the past five years, the innovation and creativity of Jazz Day has been a beacon of light to millions of people who find common ground and communicate through the values inherent in jazz.
“On April 30, people of all ages in all corners of the globe will participate in International Jazz Day,” Hancock said. “A wide range of momentous events will take place in thousands of neighborhoods — and the streets will be alive with the sounds of peace and freedom.”