Good evening, dear friends!
This all started in 2003, with tents, pilaf cooked on the fire and jazz music under a marquee. Now, as you can see, this has grown into something completely different.
I want to express gratitude to all those who have made this possible. Thank you! Also, thank you to all those who have supported this jazz festival by coming here each year. I know there are people who have taken part in the festival and who have been with us in Koktebel since 2003. Also, thank you to my Ukrainian colleagues and friends, who had to leave this venue against their will and hold the Jazz Koktebel Festival in the Odessa region as the law on "occupied territories" was passed in Ukraine prohibiting them to support jazz here. They are doing great, noble work by popularizing Koktebel in Odessa.
I would like to express special gratitude to the US Embassy, which has done a good deed and supported the Jazz Koktebel Festival in the Odessa region, and this is a case where we absolutely support them. Our gratitude also goes to all those who have made this festival possible now, at this moment — those who are building bridges literally and figuratively, the bridge to Crimea and the musical bridge connecting Koktebel and Crimea with the world through this festival.
This festival is held with the assistance from the Ministry of Culture and joint efforts from the Rossiya Segodnya International Information Agency and the All-Russia State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company.
Of course, this wouldn't happen without the bravery of the musicians who arrived here from all over the world — from the five continents. We send our gratitude and our warmest Koktebel regards to everyone. Thank you!