Russian Jazz Across Borders Forum&Festival to Bring Together World's Jazz Leaders Online in 2020

Since the International Day of Jazz in St Petersburg (2018), the Russian jazz community has been developing rapidly driven by the Jazz Across Borders (JAB) International Forum & Festival – one of the world's largest jazz conferences. This year, it will be held online on November 13 and 14.

“Every year JAB takes place in Saint Petersburg as part of the International Cultural Forum. This year, understandably, the 9th Cultural Forum was cancelled. However, we decided to hold our conference online because this year has brought out a lot of issues that need publicity and joint discussions. For example, it's important to tell musicians about grant support and potential sources of funding amid the environment of uncertainty, discuss prospects of online education, focus on how to promote jazz projects and work with the audience, and so on,” says Igor Butman, internationally acclaimed saxophone player, producer and founder of JAB.

The JAB 2020 program will consist of 5 sections: JAB Conference, JAB Workshops, matchmaking sessions, listening sessions and student bands contest.

JAB Online will be broadcasted on the website Participation is free, registration is required (available also at

The super special guests of the Forum&Festival will be one of the best jazz singers of our time, five-time Grammy winner – Dianne Reeves (USA) and jazz pianist and producer, three-time Grammy winner, Emmy winner –  Robert Glasper (USA),  their workshops will take place on November 13 and 14 respectively. The first day of the conference will also feature a public talk by the artistic director of Jazz at Lincoln Center and leading advocate of American art form Wynton Marsalis and Igor Butman. Other speakers of the business program will include: Emmy winner, composer and producer, Dean of Berklee College of Music Stephen Webber (USA), contributor to the DownBeat and JazzTimes magazines Allen Morrison (USA), radio host of WBGO Sheila Anderson (USA), radio host, program director of TSFJAZZ, Nice Jazz Fest, and the Paris jazz club Duc des Lombards Sébastien Vidal (France), director of the Jazz Society of Turkey and Ankara Jazz Festival Tuğçe Alpaslan (Turkey), director of Amersfoort Jazz Festival Alexander Beets (the Netherlands), general manager of Trondheim Jazz Festival Ernst Wiggo Sandbakk (Norway), founder and artistic director of A to JazZ Festival Peter Dimitrov (Bulgaria), radio host of Galei Zahal Radio, artistic director of Red Sea Jazz Festival Dubi Lenz (Israel), founder and artistic director of JAB, National Artist of Russia, Igor Butman, and many others.

Despite the online format of the conference, its program will still include traditional matchmaking sessions with Russian and foreign jazz experts. This year, JAB will host brand-new Listening sessions which will feature Russian and foreign music journalists and critics sharing their thoughts on jazz albums released in 2019-2020. As a result, musicians will get expert reviews and an opportunity for a wide public exposure. The discussions will take place live on November 14. Applications are admitted until November 6, 2020.

JAB Online will provide student jazz bands with an opportunity to play in front of the JAB audience and, most importantly, to get their performances rated by the Russian and foreign jury. Winners of the contest will perform at Moscow international festival Future of Jazz in 2021!

8th Future of Jazz festival

The most youth project of the People's artist of Russia Igor Butman will be held for the eighth time this year! Traditionally, the main venue of the festival will Be the Tchaikovsky concert hall, where on November 8 young musicians will perform with the world-famous Moscow jazz orchestra conducted by the Maestro.

Registration for JAB2020 Online has opened!

Friends, this year the jazz Across Borders forum-fest will be held for the first time in an online format: jazz industry leaders from around the world will discuss the most pressing issues live.


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