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16 News In addition to her continuously

expanding portfolio, Jill is also an award-winning photographer for her music photography, including ‘Woman of the Year’ for Music and Related Industries (1988). Ahead of The Eye International

Photography Festival, The Herald interviewed Jill about her contribution to ‘Havana Moon’ and what people will expect from the Festival: For the readers who don’t

know enough about your career in photography, explain how you began and what you love about it. “One could say that my career as

Havana Moon: Screened as part of The Eye International Photography Festival (Pic. Jill Furmanovsky) THERE WAS A ‘HAVANA

MOON’ above Aberystwyth Arts Centre last Friday (Sept 23) as cinema-goers were treated to a one off screening of ‘Havana Moon – The Rolling Stones Live in Cuba’. The film allowed viewers, for one

night only, to experience the magic and excitement of an historic night where The Rolling Stones played on March 25 this year in Havana, Cuba. Choosing a title from an old

Chuck Berry song, award winning Director Paul Dugdale filmed the concerts and transports two hours of classic songs from the band onto the screen. Dugdale also teamed up with ‘Musicscreen’, who specialise in bringing music concerts to cinema, to distribute this film to more than thousand screens throughout Europe, Australia, Japan, Russia, and Latin America. What made the night historic was

that The Rolling Stones became the first rock band to play an enormous free outdoor concert to a million people in Havana itself. The documentary film is a very

entertaining watch, and includes everything under the sun you could possibly ever want from a concert by The Rolling Stones. Dugdale makes sure to include

plenty of black and white archive footage of Cuba itself as well as the rock band. Before we get treated to the

concert, however, what better way to get into the mood than to watch an interview with the legendary rockers (namely Ronnie Wood, Charlie Watts, Keith Richards and Mick Jagger). As Mick Jagger explains during

the interview, and in narration that overlapped photographs, the concert attracted a million people in Cuba’s capital city as President Barack Obama paid tribute to the band in his first speech to the world’s media in Havana. This, as Jagger further explains,

happened as a result of them playing in same week as President Obama becoming the first serving US President to visit Cuba in 88 years along with the media dubbing that Obama was ‘the warm up act’ for the Rolling Stones - to which the four musicians addressed in their humorous fashion. After the rockers provided the

audience with laughs from their antidotes with each other, it was time to get the party started. Dugdale really wanted the

audience to get a sense of being backstage at a concert, and not just an

The Rolling Stones: Performing in Cuba in March this year (Pic. Jill Furmanovsky)

ordinary member of the crowd. As the Stones took to the stage,

the blinding sound of screaming Cuban fans was very striking indeed - and then the music began. Mick Jagger welcomed the

massive crowd who had come to watch the concert as well as treating the crowd to a variety of eccentric costumes throughout the show. To demonstrate the historic night,

Jagger said to the crowd amongst other things: “Finally the times are changing - Cuba, we are so happy to be here.” Just like they were formed

yesterday, the band performed a number of their classic rock hits including ‘Start Me Up’, ‘Jumpin’ Jack Flash’, ‘Paint it Black’, ‘It’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll’, ‘Honky Tonk Women’, ‘Brown Sugar’, You Can’t Always Get What You Want’ and ‘(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction’, and many more. The screening of ‘Havana Moon’

is a part of ‘The Eye International Photography Festival’ which will be held at Aberystwyth Arts Centre from Friday (Sept 30) until Sunday (Oct 2). The festival will welcome many

renowned UK and international artists over one busy weekend for an unforgettable programme of talks, discussions, portfolios, interviews and exhibitions. The weekend will also provide the opportunity to meet the artists and to hear about their inspirational careers. What better way to kick the

Festival off than the screening of ‘Havana Moon’, which links The Eye International Photography Festival with one of its guest photographers, Jill Furmanovsky. Jill has an impressive 40 career

span in photography, with her portfolio filled with many of the biggest names in rock music, namely Pink Floyd, Bob Marley, Eric Clapton, The Police, Blondie, Led Zeppelin, The Pretenders, Bob Dylan, and Oasis. She has also directed videos for Oasis and The Pretenders.

rock photographer began in 1967 when I took a picture of Paul McCartney and two of my school friends on a Kodak Instamatic camera. I was 14 at the time and a mad Beatles fan like the rest of the country. “A few years passed before

I continued with my calling. On January 14, 1972 the prog-rock group Yes were playing at The Rainbow Theatre in London’s Finsbury Park. At the time, I was halfway through a two- week block course in photography at the Central School of Art and Design. “All the art students doing degree

courses (I majored in Graphics) had to take a short course in photography so they could photograph their work. Interestingly though, photography was not considered an art at the time, it was service department. “That weekend, I had a college

camera to practice with and tickets to the concert with some friends. I managed to blag my way to the orchestra pit and shoot my one roll of film. Several professionals were there. “After the gig, I got talking to one.

He asked if I was professional, which I clearly wasn’t, but I said ‘yes’ very enthusiastically - wishful thinking I guess - and then, to my amazement, he offered me the chance to take over his job as in-house photographer at The Rainbow Theatre as he had another assignment. “The next day I remember asking

the bemused photography staff at the Central to teach me all they knew quickly because I’d got a job. And I never looked back, though the journey to being a good photographer took a very long time. “What do I love about it? Nearly

everything: the music, the musicians and taking photographs. It’s been a wonderful career.” ‘Havana Moon’ was screened on

Friday at Aberystwyth Arts Centre and is an absolutely unique show. Describe your experiences with photographing big names in the rock music industry so far in your career. “It’s great, isn’t it? One of the

best shows I’ve ever seen. I watched ‘Havana Moon’ in Camden Town and relived the whole thing again with a beating heart. “I have photographed many of the

biggest names in rock and roll - some just in concert and others intimately over many years.


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Havana Moon screened in Aber “The Rolling Stones are not one

of my main bands but I was invited by the British Embassy to do a talk in an art gallery the night before they played in Cuba, so naturally I made sure I got to shoot the show too. “Having said that, I wasn’t an

official photographer and had to find a perch near the mixing desk and just stay there. It was brilliant though.” Do you have any fond memories during this time? “Yes, of Cuba itself. That was my

third time in that wonderful country, but that is another story altogether!” You are the founder of - how did you begin this and what were your inspirations behind it? “I was inspired by Magnum - the

collective of photographers that began after the Second World War and had such an impact on photo-journalism. Many of my heroes worked for them. “After my 1997 Oasis exhibition,

‘Was There Then’, I had the chance to use the internet creatively and I thought it would be good to create an ‘archive of archives’ which would reflect (what I now call) the Rock and Roll Era in pictures. “Now, nearly 20 years later, around

50 top photographers contribute images to We are not a picture agency but we sell beautiful prints online and thorough a network of galleries worldwide. “We also curate exhibitions

using the considerable power of the collective. At the moment there is a wonderful David Bowie exhibition in Brixton. Really, we should be sponsored by the Lottery Heritage Fund. What else is more important to contemporary British culture than our rock and roll legacy? The ‘Havana Moon’ screening

is part of ‘The Eye International Photography Exhibition’ at Aberystwyth Arts Centre (to be held on Friday (Sept 30) to Sunday (Oct 2). What will your role be at the exhibition? “I am not involved in the official

promotion of ‘Havana Moon’, but my pictures have never been published, so a first for the people of Aberystwyth! “I am giving a talk at The Eye,

not showing prints. My old press compatriot, Eamonn McCabe of The Guardian, will be asking me searching questions while I show a kind career history in pictures.” Finally, ahead of your talk at the

exhibition, what will readers have to look forward to? “If they like photography and

rock music, I’m pretty sure they will find it interesting and possibly funny too – especially as I will be showing a selection of Oasis pictures which chimes in well with their hilarious new film about to be released, ‘Supersonic’.” For more information on ‘The Eye

International Photography Festival’, visit www.aberystwythartscentre. and

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