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MOSCOW, August 25. /TASS/. UNESCO has chosen Russia’s St. Petersburg as the city that will host the 7th International Jazz Day in 2018, renowned Russian jazz musician Igor Butman told TASS.
According to him, this event may contribute to improvement of relations between Russia and the West.
"We hope that this event will be internationally important for the start of a constructive dialogue between our country and Western countries. Jazz is the most democratic form of art and it will be the best way to start any new relations," the jazzman said.
Butman said that Russia’s northern capital had been chosen for hosting the event taking into account the international situation.
"To slightly iron out the kinks, to ensure that the gala concert will take place in Russia, we decided that St. Petersburg would be the most suitable place," the jazzman said.
"Our people love jazz, it is popular here, in the past people suffered a lot for it and even ended up in prison, if we take the story of Eddie Rozner [in 1946 the musician was exiled to Khabarovsk Territory in the Far East of the country - TASS]. But most important is that we have a lot wonderful musicians the world should hear. Of course, we did our best to ensure that St. Petersburg was chosen, "Butman said.
The International Jazz Day was established by UNESCO in 2011 on the initiative of the American jazz pianist and composer, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador Herbie Hancock.
Since 2012, it is celebrated annually on April 30 to raise awareness of "the virtues of jazz as an educational tool, and a force for peace, unity, dialogue and enhanced cooperation among people."