The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is interested in the archive material of the Montreux Jazz Festival and plans to give it “world heritage” status.
The archive contains more 5.000 hours of audio and video material, recorded in the last 45 years, since the beginning of the Swiss festival. Festival founder Claude Nobs started archiving all festival recordings since the second festival in 1968, after he found out that the Swiss National Television recorded a football game over Ella Fitzgerald‘s performance at the first edition of the festival.
Since then, all festival footage has been captured in a save bunker of Nobs’ summerhouse in the Lake Geneva small town called Caux.
“These 5.000 hours are worlds biggest collection of live recordings”, said Nobs, emphasizing that the digitalization process of the material began in 2008, and that it will take 15.000 hours in total.
Soon will be presented a special, two seated capsule, that will make it possible to watch single concerts from the rich Montreux Jazz Festival archive. “To me, the capsule is very important because I never watched a whole concert from the audience, and the capsule fully evokes a concert atmosphere”, said Claude Nobs.
Two days ago ended the 46th edition of Montreux Jazz festival at the idyllic Lake Geneva town of Montreux, where among others, Bob Dylan, Alanis Morissette, Jane Birkin and Herbie Hencock performed.
Take a look at one Montreux archive footage, a part of Oscar Peterson‘s concert in 1977.