19th March 2013 -- The United Nations will host American jazz musician and designated UNESCO Artist for Peace, Marcus Miller, in an upcoming concert to commemorate the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade. The concert will take place at the United Nations General Assembly Hall on Friday, 22 March, 2013 from 7:00 to 9:00 pm (by invitation only). The musical programme will follow the slave trade route, starting with artists from Africa, then the Caribbean and finally North America. Along with Marcus Miller, there will be performances by the National Ballet of Cameroon, Benyoro (a West African band), Somi (an American singer of Rwandan and Ugandan origins) and Steel Pulse (an English reggae band of Afro-Caribbean, Indian and Asian descent).
Marcus Miller is a two-time Grammy® Award winning American jazz musician, composer, producer, and radio host who is best known for his mastery of the bass guitar and his musical association with preeminent artists Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Luther Vandross and David Sanborn. In April 2012, Miller gave master classes during the first International Jazz Day organized by UNESCO with the Thelonious Monk Institute and will participate again this year. The official ceremony to designate him a UNESCO Artist for Peace will take place at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris on 4 July 2013. In his new capacity, Marcus Miller will support UNESCO’s Slave Route Project and will focus on promoting peace, dialogue, and unity through jazz.
“For UNESCO, one of the most powerful ways to learn is through the arts and culture – drawing on the wealth of cultures and artistic expressions and crossing all disciplinary boundaries, to share knowledge and experience, to foster new skills and behaviours for dialogue, mutual understanding and respect” said UNESCO Director-General, Irina Bokova. “This concert is a unique opportunity for such learning and to strengthen the foundations for lasting peace between all societies.”
The International Day of Remembrance for the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade serves as an opportunity to honor and remember those who suffered and died at the hands of the brutal slavery system, and to raise awareness about the dangers of racism and prejudice today. The annual observance is held on 25 March. This year’s theme, “Forever Free: Celebrating Emancipation,” pays tribute to the emancipation of slaves around the world.