Festival year 1966

“In May 1966 the local newspaper Satakunnan Kansa informed its readership that the Pori city board had decided to give a grant of 1000 FIM not only to the Pori teenage square dancers but also to a festival committee that was about to organize the very first jazz festival in the country. The grant was to be used only to cover a financial loss. In addition to the grant the city gave permission to use the island Kirjurinluoto as a concert venue and some lumber to build benches along with a boat to transport the audience to Kirjurinluoto – at the time there were no bridges connecting the mainland and the island. The committee was also lent a grand piano to be played in Kirjurinluoto.

The first actual financial aid, 2000 FIM was granted by the Satakunta district of the Finnish Cultural Foundation. The student’s union “”Satakuntalainen Osakunta”” at the University of Helsinki contributed to the cause by promising to guarantee the possible financial loss up to 2000 FIM which considering the resources was far more than the city of Pori had given.

Also the local business noted possibilities of co-operating with the festival. The Pori Breweries granted 1000 FIM and a truck with a driver to be used to transport gear and musicians among other things.

The beginning of the Pori Jazz Festival was quite modest with only two concerts and one jam session. The main concert attracted some 600 people.

Pori Jazz 66 wasn’t a financial loss – the return was 379 FIM. After the voluntary staff of some 20 people had been provided with beer and sausage as an official “”thank you for a job well done””, the return was 49 FIM which was seen as a promising nest-egg for the second Pori Jazz festival to be held in July 1967.

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