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Bob Collymore Immortalized in New Festival

The Bob Collymore Foundation was co-founded by his widow Wambui Kamiru Collymore and launched in July 2020

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The Bob Collymore Foundation, an organization established to honor the legacy of the late former Safaricom Chief Executive Officer Bob Collymore, has unveiled the Bob Collymore International Jazz Festival. The first edition is scheduled for 1st July, 2023 in Nairobi.

The late Collymore was famous for his love for jazz and even initiated the Safaricom Jazz Festival, which saw several of the world’s biggest Jazz artists perform in Nairobi. He was himself a Saxophone player, and reportedly loved playing playing Louis Armstrong’s It is A Wonderful World among other tunes.

The Bob Collymore Foundation was co-founded by his widow Wambui Kamiru Collymore and launched in July 2020, a year after Collymore’s passing.

The first edition of the Bob Collymore International Jazz Festival will feature artists including Edward Parseen, Ghetto Classics, Jack Muguna, Jacob Asiyo, Nairobi Horns Project and Safaricom Youth Orchestra.

The event will be held at the Carnivore Grounds. Regular tickets cost Ksh2,000 while students (with student ID) will pay Ksh500. Tickets are available online. Entry is free for children under six.

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Gates are expected to open at noon with the show scheduled to start at 2pm.

The late Collymore supported the arts in Kenya in numerous ways. For instance, one of the groups set to perform at the Bob Collymore International Jazz Festival, Ghetto Classics, supports hundreds of children from underprivileged neighborhoods in Nairobi through its orchestra programme. It was supported by Collymore and Safaricom during his time as CEO.

“He was a good friend of the kids given his time as a CEO. He was always interested in knowing what they were doing in school. He advised and called them for meetings in his office. He genuinely cared for the children,” stated Elizabeth Njoroge, the founding director of the Ghetto Classics, in 2020.

“He appreciated high quality music going by his love for jazz and classical music, bringing the Kenyan taste to the world,” stated Maestro Ken Wakia who has directed the Safaricom Choir and is the national Chairman of the Kenya Choral Directors Association.

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