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Brilliant Female Vocalists At The Malta Jazz Festival 13/07/2003

Three top brilliant female vocalists and jazz artistes will be participating at this year's Malta Jazz Festival. Dianne Reeves, the highly esteemed Blue Note recording artist will perform on the first night; The American Voices featuring the celebrity Coco York and her accompanying pianist Mike del Ferro will be opening the second night; whilst Tania Maria & Viva Brazil will be signing off the festival.

Organised by The Malta Council for Culture and the Arts, it will take place in Valletta with the magnificent Grand Harbour as a backdrop, between July 18 and 20 at 8.00pm. The festival is sponsored by Cisk Export Premium Lager and Vodafone Malta Limited and supported by Le Meridien Phoenicia and the American Center.

"This year's show will delight both connoisseurs and new fans looking to discover exciting artists, witness original gatherings of musical talents and experience thrill of spontaneous sound creations," said Charles 'City' Gatt, Artistic Director of the Malta Jazz Festival. "The theme is on voices, particularly devoted to female jazz singers who each possess an exceptional voice."

Dianne Reeves, one of the most significant and admired jazz singers, is expected to be one the highlights of the festival. Described as an artist with "no boundaries", her singing draws upon a world of influences: Africa, Brazil, and the Caribbean; gospel and rhythm and blues; classic and contemporary pop. With her strong, agile voice, rhythmic virtuosity and improvisational ease, audiences will surely be charmed with her voice on the opening night of the Malta Jazz Festival.

A Blue Note/EMI recording artist since 1987, Dianne Reeves, has earned three Grammy nominations as well as the admiration of Blue Note president Bruce Lundvall. On her ninth Blue Note release, "The Calling - Celebrating Sarah Vaughan, Reeves celebrates the esteemed jazz vocalist who inspired her to seriously pursue the art of singing. She has also been inspired by icons the like of the jazz great Ella Fitzgerald and Betty Carter. Dianne Reeves has often been described as a jazz musician in every sense.

American Voices' Coco York and Mike del Ferro, a pianist and also a soloist, will be performing on Saturday night. Coco York who has shared the stage with artists such as Clark Terry, Lionel Ritchie, B.B.King and has performed for Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, The North Sea Jazz Festival and the Jazz and Heritage Festival of New Orleans among others. Coco York has participated on other occasions at the Malta Jazz Festival and this year promises another delight for her many fans in Malta.

Tania Maria, supported by brilliant musicians the Viva Brazil Quartet will bring the Malta Jazz Festival to a close on Sunday night. Embracing the most lyrical and appealing elements of jazz, pop, blues and Brazilian music, Tania Maria's vibrant voice, brilliant piano work and outstanding performances have made an artist of increasing international popularity. Without doubt, the true essence of Tania Maria is best experienced in her "live" performances.

Tania Maria is in for a joyful celebration of "the colours of people, the many different sounds of people". She says: "When I play, I have the possibility to be 80 percent more on the side of happiness. The other 20 percent, it's up to the public to put in!"

"The Malta Jazz Festival promises a most exciting schedule of concerts. Fans of jazz will truly be able to savour a musical vintage of exceptional quality while also enjoying a Cisk Export," said Pierre Stafrace, Farsons Marketing Manager.

"Each evening a great female singer will take to the stage to perform selections of her latest repertoire. No doubt their music appeals not only to jazz lovers but also those who like good music and singing," commented Daphne Testa, Vodafone Marketing Communications Executive.

Tickets can be purchased from The Malta Council for Culture and the Arts, tel 21 245 168, and Vodafone Retail Outlets as well as from Exotique Complex (Sliema), D'Amato (Sliema and Valletta), Knight Music (Hamrun), Ta' Geraldu Kiosk and t-Teatru Manoel (Valletta), and Memories (Bugibba). Further information may be obtained from the website: www.maltajazzfest.com.