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International Jazz Day

April 30 has been designated as International Jazz Day by the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

April 30 will be celebrated as the International Jazz Day.
April 30 will be celebrated as the International Jazz Day.
©iStockphoto.com/Mark Hatfield

International Jazz Day celebrates the historical, cultural, and educational contribution of this popular genre of music. The day aims to spread international awareness about this unique musical style; and to promote the cultural, and social values that Jazz stands for.


Jazz is a uniquely American musical style that emerged out of the slave experience, primarily in southern United States. It is deeply rooted in the rich musical, and cultural traditions of Africa, and is heavily influenced by European music. New Orleans is generally considered to be the birthplace of this popular musical form, which is now seen as a voice of freedom and empowerment, and a statement against injustice, and oppression all around the world.

Today, Jazz has spread all over the globe, and is constantly evolving, being influenced by, and influencing other musical forms and genres.

The initiative to create an International Day of Jazz came from American Jazz pianist, composer, and UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for Intercultural Dialogues, Herbie Hancock. The purpose of the initiative was to focus global attention to the role that Jazz has played in breaking down race and gender barriers around the world; and in promoting cooperation; mutual understanding, and communication; peace and freedom.


Several activities mark the celebration of International Jazz Day, including Jazz concerts and performances, film screenings, and conference and panel discussions.

International Jazz Day Observances

WeekdayDateYearNameHoliday TypeWhere It is Observed
MonApr 302012International Jazz DayUnited Nations observance 
TueApr 302013International Jazz DayUnited Nations observance 
WedApr 302014International Jazz DayUnited Nations observance 
ThuApr 302015International Jazz DayUnited Nations observance 
SatApr 302016International Jazz DayUnited Nations observance 
SunApr 302017International Jazz DayUnited Nations observance 
MonApr 302018International Jazz DayUnited Nations observance 
TueApr 302019International Jazz DayUnited Nations observance 
ThuApr 302020International Jazz DayUnited Nations observance 

Quick Facts

International Jazz Day recognizes the historical, cultural, and educational contribution of jazz.

International Jazz Day 2016

Saturday, April 30, 2016

International Jazz Day 2017

Sunday, April 30, 2017


Name in other languages

International Jazz DayEnglish
Día Internacional del JazzSpanish
יום ג'אז בינלאומיHebrew
اليوم الدولي للجازArabic
국제 재즈의 날Korean
Internationaler Jazz-TagGerman

List of dates for other years

Fun Holiday on April 30, 2016

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