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New Montreux jazzfest director announced

The board of the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland has named Mathieu Jaton, who was chief aide to the late festival founder Claude Nobs, to take charge of the annual event.

New Montreux jazzfest director announced
Screenshot of Johnny Hallyday's Twitter page: the French star tweeted plans for Montreux this summer.

Jaton, who began working for the festival in 1999 and became its general secretary in 2001, had been "chosen by Claude Nobs to be his successor", the festival foundation said in a statement released on Tuesday.
   
Nobs, who founded the summertime jazz event in 1967, became a legend in musical circles for bringing the top names in jazz to the shore of Lake Geneva and for gradually broadening the festival's scope.
   
He died last week, aged 76, and the festival foundation said that Jaton's appointment followed "very moving memorials" to "an exceptional person who shaped the world of music and his region for nearly 50 years."
   
A tribute to Nobs will take place at the Stravinsky Auditorium on February 8th, the foundation said, to be followed in the spring by a memorial event in New York.
   
Finally, on July 26th and 27th London's Royal Opera House will host a "special event" conceived by Nobs.

The programme will be released later.

The lineup for the 47th Montreux Jazz Festival, to be held from July 5th to 20th 2013, has also yet to be announced.

But French rock star Johnny Hallyday tweeted a few days ago that he would be at Montreux this year "to pay tribute" to Nobs, whom he hailed as "passionate and courageous."

His planned appearance has yet to be confirmed.

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MONTREUX JAZZ FESTIVAL

Line-up released for Switzerland’s Montreux Jazz Festival

After being postponed due to the Covid pandemic, the Montreux Jazz Festival will be held this July.

Line-up released for Switzerland's Montreux Jazz Festival
A statue of Freddie Mercury in the Swiss town of Montreux. Fabrice COFFRINI / AFP

British singer-songwriter Rag’n’Bone Man and French neofolk musician Woodkid are headlining this year’s Montreux Jazz Festival, downsized and to be held mostly outdoors due to the pandemic, organisers said Tuesday.

French-Lebanese trumpeter and composer Ibrahim Maalouf and British singer-songwriter Arlo Parks, who was named best breakthrough artist at this year’s Brit Awards, are also in the line-up.

“Small is beautiful,” is the informal slogan for the 55th edition of the festival, which was cancelled last year due to the coronavirus crisis.

The festival has been scheduled for July 2-17, coinciding with the planned loosening of anti-Covid measures in Switzerland.

Around 20,000 spectators are expected to turn out — more than 10 times fewer than in 2019, when some 250,000 took part, according to organisers.

For more than half a century, Montreux has been a magnet for big names of the music business and rising stars alike.

It has retained its jazz label despite dramatically expanding its repertoire, with big names in rock, punk, R&B and hip-hop also on the bill this year.

The 2021 programme has been condensed and the format adjusted to easily adapt to the Covid-19 situation in the idyllic Swiss town of Montreux, on the shores of Lake Geneva.

The main stage has been built on the lake, 25 metres (80 feet) from the shore, opposite a grandstand that can hold up to 500 spectators.

It will be one of only four stages used for the festival — two for ticket holders and two free of charge — able to accommodate a total of up to 1,500 people a day.

Tickets go on sale on June 8. Organisers also said they would livestream several of the concerts “in order to bring the festival to a larger audience”.

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