During Jazz Appreciation Month in April, the United States Diplomacy Center is commemorating the outstanding contributions of jazz musicians and other artists to U.S. diplomacy. Join us for a panel discussion on jazz’s diplomatic mission in the Cold War and the continuing role of cultural diplomacy in U.S. foreign policy. Stay on after the panel for a jazz performance by students of the Foundation for the Advancement of Music and Education (FAME) and an opportunity to tour our temporary “Jam Session” photography exhibit.
Featured panelists include
Dr. Penny Von Eschen, Professor of Humanities and History from Cornell University and author of Satchmo Blows Up the World: Jazz Ambassadors Play the Cold War
Jay Raman, Director of the Cultural Programs Division in the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) at the U.S. Department of State
Kenny Wesley, songwriter, pianist, vocalist, and alumnus of ECA’s American Music Abroad program.
After the panel discussion, from 12:00 to 12:30 p.m., middle and high school students from FAME’s jazz band will perform as guests enjoy our temporary exhibit: “Jam Session: America’s Jazz Ambassadors Embrace the World,” courtesy of Meridian International Center. On show until June, it chronicles the international tours of legendary jazz musicians who were selected by the U.S. State Department to serve as roving cultural “ambassadors” from the 1950s through the 1970s. These musicians interacted with foreign audiences to promote a positive view of the United States during the height of Cold War tensions.
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