I was seduced by my visit to Valletta. One has to visit Malta to dive into a place, a universe where architecture can date from the prehistoric era, where the Romans lived as well as the Arabs, the French, the Knights of St. John and the British. It’s absolutely fantastic.
A major event on the international calendar, the Valletta festival brings baroque music to the fore in January, in a city where the melodious echoes of the 16th century still resonate. The masterful interpretation of renowned artists (Andrea Bocelli), the beauty and acoustics of prestigious concert venues such as the Manoel Theater, as well as the quality of the works presented, make this festival an inevitable rendez-vous for fans of the genre.
And one could not imagine a more beautiful setting to celebrate baroque music than the city of Valletta, which carries in it the quintessence of this flamboyant time. The Maltese capital as we can discover it today, built by the knight Jean Parisot of Valletta after the Great Siege of the island by the Ottomans in 1565, retains intact perfectly intact the charm and the architectural harmony of its creation.
Unesco’s World Heritage Site for its concentration of monuments from the 16th and 17th centuries, invites you to a wonderful dive in the heart of the rich and spectacular Baroque style.
You may locate in a very comfortable 5-star hotel at the gateway to the historic entrance of Valletta, you will go to meet this exciting city, while enjoying the festival thanks to these exceptional performances that will delight all music lovers. ..
In France, more precisely, on Côte d’Azur, from July 14th to 25th 2010, the prestigious international jazz festival « Jazz à Juan, » the oldest in Europe, will be celebrating its 50th anniversary. Antibes Juan-les-Pins, the capital of jazz, has chosen to pay tribute to the great musicians who have performed ever since 1960 in the legendary setting of the Gould pine grove. On the strength of the festival’s international recognition, the town is also preparing the future generation of young artists with the « Jazz à Juan Révélations »—a series of concerts promoting young jazz musicians on stage.
As early as the 1920s, Antibes Juan-les-Pins was the meeting place for the intellectual and modernist elite, in the manner of F. Scott Fitzgerald and Hemingway. They brought with them jazz and a new art of living. The city of joie de vivre, dear to the heart of Picasso, was also the adopted homeland of the great saxophone player Sidney Bechet. Created in 1960 as a tribute to Bechet, « Jazz à Juan » sparked many other festivals which spread across the whole of Europe.
The concept was revolutionary. For the first time, the general public could discover, up close, the jazz greats in a beautiful setting—under the centenarian pine trees of the Pinède Gould, facing the Mediterranean Sea. It was certainly a risky gamble, but came off brilliantly, leading to a permanent festival celebrating jazz in all its forms: New Orleans, Gospel, Blues, Swing, Be-Bop, Latin Jazz, Cool Jazz, Hard-Bop, Free Jazz, Jazz-Rock, Modern Jazz and Electro-Jazz.
The Jazz à Juan Festival has become one of the most effective conveyors of communication for Antibes Juan-les-Pins in Europe and throughout the world. The favorite festival of Ray Charles, John Coltrane, Miles Davis—and more recently, Keith Jarrett, Sonny Rollins and Jamie Cullum—is now preparing to welcome once again, upon the occasion of a half-century of existence, an exceptional variety of artists including bassist Marcus Miller, pianist Keith Jarrett, bossa-nova great Carlinhos Brown, sax-player David Sanborn, and drummer Manu Katché.
In order to make this a very special 50th birthday celebration and to help prepare future jazz talents, the Antibes Juan-les-Pins Tourist Office is presenting:
• The « Jazz à Juan » spring & summer series 2010
Fifty years of « Jazz à Juan » jazz heritage will be exhibited through movie projection, conferences and art exhibitions throughout the spring and early summer period in Antibes Juan-les-Pins.