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Nordic Jazz ’08

The Nordic Jazz series in the nation’s capitol has undergone a number of changes over the past three years. It began in January 2006 as a way to capitalize on appearances by various musicians at the IAJE Conference in New York. In that first year, embassies in Washington pooled their resources and booked Blues Alley for five nights. Then last year, the series was moved to June in order to piggyback on appearances by Nordic musicians at a select group of North American jazz festivals. It also moved from Blues Alley to the recently opened House of Sweden in Georgetown, where they presented four Nordic jazz groups in a marathon concert on the roof.

This year, Nordic Jazz ’08 was spread over two nights, presenting groups from Sweden, Finland, Norway and the Faroe Islands. In terms of audience turnout, it was a great success, drawing about 200 people each night. The only real drawback was there were fewer than 60 chairs on the rooftop, so many in the audience invariably stood around drinking and talking during the performance.

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