BET Jazz, MTV India, Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz and U.S. Department of State to Partner for First Annual India Jazz & Heritage Tour

Ravi Coltrane, Al Jarreau, George Duke and Earl Klugh

Are Scheduled to Appear



One-Week Event to Include Concerts, Workshops,

HIV-AIDS Awareness Outreach Press Launch on December 14

at U.S. Department of State, Washington, D.C.



Dec 14, 2004, 00:00 ET from BET (Black Entertainment Television)

    WASHINGTON, Dec. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- BET Jazz, MTV India, the Thelonious
 Monk Institute of Jazz and the U.S. Department of State announce plans for the
 2005 India Jazz and Heritage Tour from January 12-20, 2005 in Mumbai (formally
 known as Bombay) and New Delhi, India.  American jazz artists scheduled to
 appear include Ravi Coltrane, Al Jarreau, George Duke and Earl Klugh.
     "This week-long event is designed to encourage the interaction between
 Indian and American cultures," states BET Jazz Executive Vice President and
 General Manager Paxton Baker. "The tour and its various components will also
 give us the opportunity to increase HIV-AIDS awareness, which has become a
 major social issue in India."
     Tom Carter, President of the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz, remarked,
 "The Institute partnered with the U.S. Department of State in 1996 to present
 a very successful jazz education tour in India.  We are most pleased to be
 returning to India for a second educational tour in collaboration with the
 Department of State and BET Jazz.  This exchange will further the Institute's
 mission to preserve America's legacy of jazz by sharing it with the world, as
 well as by bringing young aspiring musicians together with the jazz legends
 who created this music."
     Added Alex Kuruvilla, Managing Director, MTV Networks India, "Music knows
 no boundaries. MTV India is proud to be associated with the historic
 performances by American Jazz giants and to be a part of bringing together
 people and countries, joining forces in the fight against HIV/AIDS."
     The 2005 India Jazz and Heritage Tour commences in Mumbai with a master
 class featuring Ravi Coltrane and participants from the Monk Institute and
 Indian students. The final Mumbai event will be a charity luncheon with
 proceeds donated to HIV-AIDS research followed by an evening concert at the
 Gateway of India, a national landmark situated along the downtown shoreline
 overlooking the Arabian Sea.
     Members of the tour will travel to New Delhi and perform master classes
 and give lectures in various schools.  A musical birthday tribute to Martin
 Luther King Jr. featuring film footage of his visit there in the 1960s is also
 planned.  The tour will include a trip to Agra and the Taj Mahal.
     BET Jazz and BET Event Productions will produce 10-12 programs for future
 airing on The Jazz Channel from this tour, including:
 
     * Feature on Ravi Coltrane, concerts and master classes and
       discussion/footage on his father -- legendary jazz great John Coltrane
       -- and his trip to India;
 
     * Feature on Martin Luther King's 1959 trip to India;
 
     * HIV-AIDS awareness program; and
 
     * An overview/Best of Tour special program.
 
     BET Jazz: The 24 Hour Jazz Channel, a subsidiary of BET and Viacom, Inc.
 (NYSE:   VIA and VIA.B), is the principle location for the fulfillment of all
 jazz interests. The network is the first and only 24-hour television
 programming service dedicated exclusively to jazz music and culture.  BET Jazz
 features many of the finest names in jazz through in-studio performances,
 festivals, concert coverage, and celebrity interviews.  Many of the shows
 feature original programming, as well as historic footage, unavailable on any
 other television network.
     BET Event Productions (BEP), a division of Viacom subsidiary Black
 Entertainment Television (BET), is in the business of producing "Best in
 Class" live events, events that are designed to facilitate the advertising and
 promotional needs of its clients.  BEP offers a full range of services,
 including project development and management, event marketing, artistic
 direction and production.
     MTV India is a 24-hour music channel that caters to young Indians between
 the ages of 15 - 34. MTV India has over 35 sponsors, more than 270 brands and
 India specific shows hosted by Indian VJ's. MTV India's playlist consists of
 70% Indian music (film & pop) and 30% international music. MTV India is one of
 MTV Networks' 43 music programming services, transmitted via PanAmSat 10,
 created exclusively for India. MTV India is received in over 23.5 million
 homes in India via cable.
     The Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz (http://www.monkinstitute.org) is a
 non-profit education organization established in memory of Thelonious Monk,
 the legendary jazz pianist and composer.  Monk believed the best way to learn
 jazz was from a master of the music.  The Institute follows that same
 philosophy by bringing together the greatest living jazz musicians to teach
 and inspire young people.  The Institute offers the most promising young
 musicians college level training by America's jazz masters and presents public
 school-based jazz education programs for people around the world. Helping to
 fill the tremendous void in arts education left by severe budget cuts in
 public school funding, the Institute's programs are provided free to the
 public and use jazz as the medium to encourage imaginative thinking,
 creativity, a positive self-image, and respect for one's own and others'
 cultural heritage.
 
 

SOURCE BET (Black Entertainment Television)
    WASHINGTON, Dec. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- BET Jazz, MTV India, the Thelonious
 Monk Institute of Jazz and the U.S. Department of State announce plans for the
 2005 India Jazz and Heritage Tour from January 12-20, 2005 in Mumbai (formally
 known as Bombay) and New Delhi, India.  American jazz artists scheduled to
 appear include Ravi Coltrane, Al Jarreau, George Duke and Earl Klugh.
     "This week-long event is designed to encourage the interaction between
 Indian and American cultures," states BET Jazz Executive Vice President and
 General Manager Paxton Baker. "The tour and its various components will also
 give us the opportunity to increase HIV-AIDS awareness, which has become a
 major social issue in India."
     Tom Carter, President of the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz, remarked,
 "The Institute partnered with the U.S. Department of State in 1996 to present
 a very successful jazz education tour in India.  We are most pleased to be
 returning to India for a second educational tour in collaboration with the
 Department of State and BET Jazz.  This exchange will further the Institute's
 mission to preserve America's legacy of jazz by sharing it with the world, as
 well as by bringing young aspiring musicians together with the jazz legends
 who created this music."
     Added Alex Kuruvilla, Managing Director, MTV Networks India, "Music knows
 no boundaries. MTV India is proud to be associated with the historic
 performances by American Jazz giants and to be a part of bringing together
 people and countries, joining forces in the fight against HIV/AIDS."
     The 2005 India Jazz and Heritage Tour commences in Mumbai with a master
 class featuring Ravi Coltrane and participants from the Monk Institute and
 Indian students. The final Mumbai event will be a charity luncheon with
 proceeds donated to HIV-AIDS research followed by an evening concert at the
 Gateway of India, a national landmark situated along the downtown shoreline
 overlooking the Arabian Sea.
     Members of the tour will travel to New Delhi and perform master classes
 and give lectures in various schools.  A musical birthday tribute to Martin
 Luther King Jr. featuring film footage of his visit there in the 1960s is also
 planned.  The tour will include a trip to Agra and the Taj Mahal.
     BET Jazz and BET Event Productions will produce 10-12 programs for future
 airing on The Jazz Channel from this tour, including:
 
     * Feature on Ravi Coltrane, concerts and master classes and
       discussion/footage on his father -- legendary jazz great John Coltrane
       -- and his trip to India;
 
     * Feature on Martin Luther King's 1959 trip to India;
 
     * HIV-AIDS awareness program; and
 
     * An overview/Best of Tour special program.
 
     BET Jazz: The 24 Hour Jazz Channel, a subsidiary of BET and Viacom, Inc.
 (NYSE:   VIA and VIA.B), is the principle location for the fulfillment of all
 jazz interests. The network is the first and only 24-hour television
 programming service dedicated exclusively to jazz music and culture.  BET Jazz
 features many of the finest names in jazz through in-studio performances,
 festivals, concert coverage, and celebrity interviews.  Many of the shows
 feature original programming, as well as historic footage, unavailable on any
 other television network.
     BET Event Productions (BEP), a division of Viacom subsidiary Black
 Entertainment Television (BET), is in the business of producing "Best in
 Class" live events, events that are designed to facilitate the advertising and
 promotional needs of its clients.  BEP offers a full range of services,
 including project development and management, event marketing, artistic
 direction and production.
     MTV India is a 24-hour music channel that caters to young Indians between
 the ages of 15 - 34. MTV India has over 35 sponsors, more than 270 brands and
 India specific shows hosted by Indian VJ's. MTV India's playlist consists of
 70% Indian music (film & pop) and 30% international music. MTV India is one of
 MTV Networks' 43 music programming services, transmitted via PanAmSat 10,
 created exclusively for India. MTV India is received in over 23.5 million
 homes in India via cable.
     The Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz (http://www.monkinstitute.org) is a
 non-profit education organization established in memory of Thelonious Monk,
 the legendary jazz pianist and composer.  Monk believed the best way to learn
 jazz was from a master of the music.  The Institute follows that same
 philosophy by bringing together the greatest living jazz musicians to teach
 and inspire young people.  The Institute offers the most promising young
 musicians college level training by America's jazz masters and presents public
 school-based jazz education programs for people around the world. Helping to
 fill the tremendous void in arts education left by severe budget cuts in
 public school funding, the Institute's programs are provided free to the
 public and use jazz as the medium to encourage imaginative thinking,
 creativity, a positive self-image, and respect for one's own and others'
 cultural heritage.
 
 SOURCE  BET (Black Entertainment Television)