June 13, 2013 10:13
Nah Youn-sun, who has emerged as one of the leading jazz vocalists in Europe, has been appointed jury president of the prestigious Shure Montreux Jazz Voice Competition, on the sidelines of the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland, her agency said on Wednesday.
Now in its 47th year, Montreux ranks as the world's second-largest jazz festival after Montreal. This year's event will take place from July 5 to 20, and the jazz voice competition has been whittled down from over 100 applicants from 34 countries to nine finalists. The list of former jury presidents includes U.S. producer Quincy Jones, operatic soprano Barbara Hendricks, and multi-Grammy-winning jazz singer Al Jarreau.
Nah, who is due to perform at the festival on July 14, said, "I'm grateful to be given a chance to perform at one of the world’s leading jazz festivals, and it's a great honor to be jury president of this competition."
Nah's eighth album "Lento" was released in Korea and Europe in March but only recently became available in the U.S., where it has received critical acclaim.
The Seattle Times called it "shockingly original, haunting, witty and charming." The Buffalo News wrote of Nah, "She's Korean, lives in Paris and, to many ears, may be the most extraordinary jazz singer to come along in an era that is, quite frankly, overloaded with mediocrities." Comparing her to the likes of Diana Krall, Michael Buble and Norah Jones, it added that Nah is "more interesting than all of them put together."
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