Panamanian jazz composer Danilo Pérez to become UN Artist for Peace

Panamanian pianist and jazz composer Danilo Pérez. Photo: Raj Naik/Danilo Perez

19 November 2012 – The United Nations agency tasked with conserving and promoting humanity’s cultural heritage today announced its move to appoint renowned Panamanian pianist and jazz composer Danilo Pérez as an Artist for Peace for his efforts to promote music programmes for children living in extreme poverty in his country.

The UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) said the designation of Mr. Pérez as an Artist for Peace by the agency’s Director-General, Irina Bokova – which will take place at the agency’s headquarters in Paris on Tuesday – will be in appreciation of his work as President of the Danilo Pérez Foundation, as well as “his dedication to the ideals and aims of the Organization.”

UNESCO Artists for Peace are internationally renowned personalities who use their influence, charisma and prestige to promote UNESCO’s message, according to the UN agency. They include Cameroonian musician Manu Dibango, musician Gilberto Gil of Brazil, Portuguese actress and singer Maria de Medeiros, British singer Sarah Brightman and author Frankétienne of Haiti.

Mr. Pérez has influenced contemporary music through his distinctive Pan-American jazz, UNESCO noted in a news release. In addition to his work providing outreach music programmes for children through his foundation, he directs the Berklee Global Jazz Institute at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts, and is the Artistic Director for the Panama Jazz Festival.

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