HAVANA TIMES – For over 90 years, jazz has been made and enjoyed in Cuba. The first known reference revolves around the Roof Garden of the Hotel Sevilla, where it was performed by USA orchestras. As the 20th century progressed, Jazz became an integral part of Cuban musicians’ culture. In 1963, the First Jazz Festival took place at the Payret Theater in Havana.
It became necessary to channel the musical torrent developing in Cuba to bring musicians together, organize a schedule, and promote their work. The First encounter became a must-attend event for Cuban musicians, and the doors of Jazz Plaza opened to the world, summoning the most important names in the genre. From that date until 2024, 39 Jazz Plaza events have taken place, also serving as a launching pad for new national talents.
The Jazz Plaza Festival, the most important event in Cuba for this musical genre, is taking place from January 21 to 28, 2024. It is an annual music event gathering artists from over 20 countries This edition will pay tribute to Bola de Nieve, Miguelito Cuní, and Cesar Pupy Pedroso. The extensive program of concerts and presentations is taking place in Havana and Santiago de Cuba.
I was able to capture some pictures at the Pabellon Cuba, one of the festival venues where the following groups performed: Grupo Conexión Cubana (Cuba), Las Chicas y los Chicos del Barrio (Netherlands), Pedrito y Mi Son entero (Cuba) y Mari Bel and Patrice Fisher (United States).