Panama Jazz Festival 2020 starts off with an injection of joy and positivity
On Monday, January 13, after the completion of its traditional press conference, the Danilo Perez Foundation formally opened its seventeenth Panama Jazz Festival, which is consolidated as the "Bridge of the Americas" for students from all over the region.
Institutional representatives, businessmen, invited national and international artists, students, media and music enthusiasts gathered at the City of Knowledge Convention Center to learn the details of the festival that has managed to position itself as a cultural project that consolidates creativity, exchange and talent, with a strong commitment to education and Panamanian social welfare.
The event began at 9:50 a.m. with the presentation of the Congo group: La Escuelita del Ritmo de Portobelo, who for almost a decade have played an increasingly important role in the socio-economic development of the population of Portobelo through the promotion of art, culture, creative industries and social and environmental sustainability.
The meeting was then opened by the Cultural Ambassador and Artistic Director of the Panama Jazz Festival, Danilo Perez and the company of the Mayor of Panama City, Engineer Jose Luis Fabrega; the Minister of the Tourism Authority of Panama, Ivan Eskildsen; the Minister of the Ministry of Culture, Carlos Aguilar; the Executive Director of the City of Knowledge Foundation, Jorge Arosemena; Lic. Ariadne Castrellón, of BAC Credomatic; Marco Ocando, Director of Marketing & E Business of Copa Airlines; Lic. Francisca Bruyer, Commercial Manager of Alamo and Panamanian saxophonist Reggie Johnson.
"Because we believe in culture and as an essential part of our identity and as the shaper of the noblest values, this year we not only want to contribute to the seventeenth edition, but we have also agreed to sign a cultural cooperation agreement between the Danilo Perez Foundation and the Municipality of Panama, for the dissemination, organization and development of the Panama Jazz Festival that from this year 2020 until 2024 for the sum of $250,000.00" were the Honorable Lord's previous words of commitment. José Luis Fábrega, Mayor of Panama at the time of sealing this alliance between the Panama City Hall and the Panama Jazz Festival.
Panama Jazz Festival 2020
The development of art, education and culture, are emblematic characteristics that are part of our mission, which have permeated the lives of hundreds of children and young Panamanians for 17 years.
"This year has been the most difficult of all, difficult for the country and do not think that by celebrating 17 years we are in a golden cradle, we have the same challenges and many nights I could not sleep thinking about how we would do the festival this year and so I remembered my first promise, which was, that if I grew up I would commit to help my country, to my neighbor, to my people and that is why I studied abroad and that is why we are here, fulfilling a promise that must be followed" were the words of the Artistic Director of the Festival Danilo Perez when he thanked the main table and the audience for believing in this project for one more year.
The Danilo Perez Foundation was legally established in 2005, but its work and spirit originated in the 1960's when Danilo Perez Sr. experimented with basic education for children at social risk and began to compose songs for learning all school subjects. This experience culminates in 1967 with the writing of a thesis in pedagogy that suggests that teachers of all subjects should have a basic musical education since their observations show that children learn faster, retain learning longer, and practice the creative process that eventually helps them become more productive, sensitive adults with less incidence of violence, poverty, and marginalization.
Since its inception in 2003, the Panama Jazz Festival has attracted more than 350,000 jazz fans worldwide and has announced more than $4.5 million in national and international scholarships. Its educational component brings together 5,000 music students from around the world each year, and in January 2019 the festival brought together more than 30,000 people from around the world.