The Koktebel Jazz Party has been slightly downsized for its 2020 edition in order to meet all the sanitary standards, festival founder and Rossiya Segodnya Director General Dmitry Kiselev said.
“We have reduced the number of seats to 600 instead of 1,000, and recommended that people sit in every other chair, unless they are a family. We hope that journalists and organizers will become role models, setting an example of respecting the sanitary and epidemiological norms, and will wear masks properly so that they cover their noses,” he pointed out.
This year, organizers had to give up on the idea of inviting foreign musicians to the festival. Nevertheless, the audience will be treated to a surprise performance by the Dave Yaden Band playing from Los Angeles via video linkup.
In another highlight of the 2020 festival, Pyotr Vostokov will present a new program with his orchestra.
“He loves playing old music in new formats, and will definitely surprise the audience,” Koktebel Jazz Party Artistic Director and radio JAZZ 89.1 FM Program Director Mikhail Ikonnikov said.
Just like every year, quality sound will be a top priority.
“Koktebel is a very special place for me. There is something new every time I’m here. Bringing together jazz musicians from all over the world is not difficult. Ensuring that they have the proper sound is a different story. Sound quality has become the hallmark of this festival. For me, music knows no boundaries, and jazz is all about expressing one’s feelings. When your soul is singing, nothing can stop you,” Sergei Golovnya, the second Artistic Director of the Koktebel Jazz Party, noted.
Dmitry Kiselev said that the festival has a number of missions, including environmental protection, education and charity. In previous years, proceeds from ticket sales went toward renovating the courtyard of a local school and buying interactive boards and other equipment for the classrooms. This year, the funds will be donated for rebuilding a local clubhouse that burned down. It used to offer workshops for children and served as an assembly hall for local residents.
In addition, this year’s festival will also include the annual clean-up campaign. Koktebel Jazz Party volunteers will pick up trash on the beaches, so that the Koktebel coastline will be cleaner when the musicians and audience leave compared to when they arrived.
“Our event is like a rose in a landfill: every year, we come here to make this tiny piece of Crimea a better place. I think we have succeeded in raising awareness about the problems that both locals and vacationers have been grappling with for many years,” Kiselev pointed out.