Legendary “Jazz Ambassadors” Randy Weston &
Buster Cooper & Renowned Photo-Journalist Herb Snitzer Headline October 13, 2010 “Jam Session” Opening Event
at 6 pm in St. Petersburg
The International Council of the Tampa Bay Region
Presents “Jam Session: America’s Jazz Ambassadors Embrace the World!” This 6-Week historical photo exhibition
live music “jam sessions”, & concerts by college and high school jazz musicians plays at the St. Petersburg
(FL) Museum of History.
St. Petersburg, FL, October 5, 2010:
International Council of the Tampa Bay Region announces that three legendary jazz artists will appear at the
October 13 Opening Reception for the six-week historical exhibition at the St. Petersburg Museum of History.
Randy Weston: At the October 13 Opening Reception, one of the original “Jazz Ambassadors –
Randy Weston, a globally-renowned jazz pianist, composer and
leader of a 1960s tour in Africa – will be honored, speak about his State Department tours, and perform a
program of his music.
Another original “Jazz
Ambassador” – Buster Cooper, trombonist in the Duke Ellington Orchestra during the 1963 State Department
tour – a St. Petersburg native, will be honored at the event.
world-renowned photo-journalist, photographed nearly all of the Jazz Ambassadors and created indelible images of
them in rehearsal, on stage, and in their private lives. Snitzer will also be honored at the opening event, and
display some of his work as part of the exhibit.
For a complete
6-week schedule, media kit, and for ticket information, please visit http://www.ic-tbr.org/JAM-SESSION-AMERICA'S-JAZZ-AMBASSADORS-EMBRACE-THE-WORLD!.html.
”Jam Session” is a major
photographic retrospective of the historic 1950s – 1970s era that chronicles the US State Department globe-trotting
concert tours of America’s “Jazz Ambassadors” – Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman, Dave Brubeck, Randy
Weston, and Dizzy Gillespie, among others. For more than 20 years, individual bands,
orchestras and even the Newport Jazz Festival brought the artistry of jazz to millions behind the Iron Curtain, to
Asia, Africa and to Latin America. The Meridian International Center exhibit has traveled the world and the US.
This is the only tour stop in Florida.
The exhibit plays
at the St. Petersburg Museum of History six days a week (Tues-Sun) from October 12-November 21, 2010, with related
live music and jazz history events happening three days a week. Partners in the event include three charitable
organizations: The International Council, the St. Petersburg Museum of History, and the Al Downing Tampa Bay Jazz
October 1, 2010
“Jazz Ambassadors” Land in St. Petersburg October
in Egypt? Duke Ellington in Iraq? Count Basie
in Burma? Dizzy Gillespie in Iran? Randy Weston in Senegal?
From October 12 –
November 21, 2010, The International Council of the Tampa Bay Region presents “Jam Session: America’s Jazz Ambassadors Embrace the World!”, a Meridian
International Center traveling photographic exhibition that chronicles of the days when the US Department of
America's "Jazz Ambassadors" - among them, Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington and Dizzy Gillespie - on a series of
overseas "cultural exchange tours" from the 1950s - 1970s. The show plays at the St. Petersburg Museum of
History six days a week, with related music and jazz history events around the area.
Diplomacy” – employing the arts to further international and inter-cultural understanding – has often helped the
United States share its message abroad, sometimes at critical moments in American foreign policy. During the
Cold War 1950s – 1970s, America’s cultural ambassadors were the great jazz musicians of all time. They took
“America’s classical music” to millions of listeners in Eastern Europe, East Asia, Africa and Latin
“Jam Session” is a collection of nearly
100 photos and posters from the global journeys of these jazz greats. The exhibit has travelled around the world
under the auspices of Meridian International Center, and is currently featured at the Shanghai World Expo in
A number of jazz greats who were part of this era will
appear at “Jam Session” events:
- At the October 13 Opening Reception, one of the original “Jazz Ambassadors –
Randy Weston, a globally-renowned jazz pianist, composer and leader of a 1960s tour in Africa – will
be honored, speak about his State Department tours, and perform a program of his music.
- Another original “Jazz Ambassador” – Buster
Cooper, trombonist in the Duke Ellington Orchestra during the 1963 State Department tour – is a native
of St. Petersburg and will be honored at our opening event.
- Herb Snitzer, world-renowned photo-journalist, photographed
nearly all of the Jazz Ambassadors and created indelible images of them in rehearsal, on stage, and in
their private lives. Herb, who currently resides in St. Pete, will also be honored at the opening event,
and display some of his work as part of the exhibit.
- Dan Morgenstern, Director of the Institute of Jazz Studies (Rutgers
University), jazz historian and Grammy Award winner, will join Herb
Snitzer on November 4 for a dialogue that places the Jazz
Ambassador tours in the American historical context of the 1950s-1970s.
- Dick Hyman, another original “Jazz Ambassador” in the 1970s
who is a renowned jazz pianist and composer and Emmy Award winner, will play at an evening event on
November 10 celebrating the 10th anniversary of the
Many of these
“Jazz Ambassadors” played around the Tampa Bay area, and especially here in St. Petersburg at the historic
Manhattan Casino and the Royal Theater. As part of the “Jam Session” global experience, two very special
exhibits will also be on display at the Museum. One will celebrate the “History of Jazz in St. Petersburg”, which will explore the rich and diverse
heritage of jazz in our city. Another special exhibit will feature the historic jazz photography of photojournalist and author Herb Snitzer, an
internationally known photographer who lives in St. Petersburg. This is one blockbuster show that you’ll not
want to miss!
Each week of the
exhibit will feature live “jam sessions”, jazz history lectures, “swing” dancing, and featured jazz performances
by professional and area high school and college jazz combos. The International Council and the Museum are
working with the Al Downing Tampa Bay Jazz Association – a regional non-profit that provides training and
scholarships for aspiring young musicians – to create a great jazz music program to accompany the “Jam Session”
and up-to-the-minute information can be found at www.ic-tbr.org. Further information can be obtained by calling Gary L. Springer, President
of the International Council, at 727-709-3354.
International Council of the Tampa Bay Region is
the originating sponsor of this exhibit at the Museum. The International Council – the State Department’s
exclusive “public diplomacy” partner organization for our region, annually provides professional, educational
and cultural programs for over 300 current and emerging global leaders invited to the US by our Embassies
Click Below for Details!
"America's Jazz Ambassadors"
Jazz Photography of Herb
"Jam Session" Community Partners