International Pop Star and Three-Time Grammy Nominee, Jewel, to Perform at Swiss National Day on Ellis Island

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Performance and Photo Opportunities on July 29, 2006

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International pop star Jewel will put her Swiss roots on display with a performance at the Swiss National Day celebration on Ellis Island, Saturday, July 29, 2006, from 12:15 to 1:00 honoring Switzerland's 715th birthday. The event, presented by http://www.swissroots.org will also feature the newly designed exhibition, "Small Number - Big Impact," a lively presentation of Swiss immigration history to the U.S. that will run at Ellis Island until October 31, 2006 and is organized by "The Association for a Swiss Migration Museum." Swiss Minister of Culture, Federal Councilor Pascal Couchepin, will officially open the exhibition, and will deliver the Swiss National Day keynote address. Furthermore, Swiss National Day will showcase a wide range of Swiss entertainers, exhibits, and culinary delicacies.

Proud of her Swiss heritage, Jewel decided, much like Pittsburgh Steelers' Ben Roethlisberger, to join "Swiss Roots," a program that seeks to inspire Americans to connect with Switzerland, and she will become a "Swiss Roots" spokesperson. She says: "I was raised aware of my Swiss roots, singing traditional songs and eating traditional food. I even have a Swiss passport." As a Swiss-born American, Jewel's father, Atz Kilcher, with whom she will perform at Swiss National Day, helped familiarize his daughter with her family's Swiss heritage.

Jewel became aware of Swiss Roots through the makers of "Small Number - Big Impact," and is one of the celebrities featured in the exhibition at Ellis Island. Others include Marc Forster (Oscar-winning film maker), Adolf Rickenbacker (inventor of the electric guitar), Albert Gallatin (finance minister under President Thomas Jefferson), Elisabeth Kübler-Ross (psychiatrist and death researcher), Louis Chevrolet (racing driver and car maker), Robert Frank (photographer), Andreas Dietsch (early socialist), Othmar H. Amman (bridge builder) and General Johann August Sutter (adventurer). The exhibition also includes the "Swiss Forum," a lounge in which visitors have access to Internet stations enabling Swiss-ancestry genealogical searches. In addition, a comprehensive exhibition catalogue will be on sale at the Ellis Island Museum's book shop.

About "Swiss Roots"

"Swiss Roots" brings the United States and Switzerland closer together through activities that foster dialogue and understanding, through online exchanges and live events. The program's centerpiece, http://www.swissroots.org, is a state-of-the-art website that serves as a tool for more than one million Americans of Swiss descent to discover their ancestral roots, and as a gateway for those curious about Switzerland to discover and communicate with the Swiss people. The "Swiss Roots" website was launched officially on March 29 at the Embassy of Switzerland in Washington, D.C., and will be active well into the future.

Featuring various events throughout the United States, "Swiss Roots" showcases the best in Swiss innovation, culture, history, education, and business. The project is managed by the Consulate General of Switzerland in New York and the official Swiss representations in the U.S., in cooperation with numerous local Swiss associations. "Swiss Roots" is coordinated by Presence Switzerland (the Swiss Government's country branding agency) and supported by Switzerland Tourism (the official Swiss tourist board) and Pro Helvetia (the Swiss Arts Council). The program is additionally sponsored by private sector companies such as Swiss Helvetia Fund, Swiss International Air Lines and Swiss Post.

About Jewel

An accomplished and world-renowned singer, songwriter, poet, and painter, Jewel has continued to explore fresh musical avenues, branching out from her folk roots to incorporate rock, pop, country, blues, jazz, and classical influences into her work. Jewel's personal odyssey, partly chronicled on her landmark 12-times platinum debut, "Pieces of You," comes to full flower on "Goodbye Alice in Wonderland," her most recent album which was released in May. Marking her first album in three years -- and sixth all told -- the collection is her most autobiographical work in more than a decade, tracing her path from the extreme solitude of Alaska to the extreme joys and pitfalls of fame. "Goodbye Alice in Wonderland" follows 2003's "0304," which debuted at #2 on the Billboard 200 album chart, simultaneously becoming both the highest-debuting and highest-charting album of her career to date, while also marking her fourth album to hit the top ten on the national charts. To date, Jewel has sold over 25 million albums worldwide, enjoying career longevity rare among her generation of artists.

Media conference and photo op with Jewel and Federal Councilor Couchepin will be organized at Ellis Island between 1:30 and 2:15 on July 29. For free media access to Ellis Island, please email esther.steuble @ eda.admin.ch or Pamela @ pjinc.net or Tre @ pjinc.net

Contact:

  •      for general program information:

Daniel Hunn, Swiss Roots Project Team, Consulate General of Switzerland, New York,

e-mail: daniel.hunn @ eda.admin.ch, phone: 212 599 5700, ext. 1022

  •      for information on "Small Number - Big Impact:

Markus Hodel, The Association for a Swiss Migration Museum, Winterthur, Switzerland

e-mail: hodel @ migrationsmuseum.ch, phone: ++ 41 52 213 0008

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Daniel Hunn
Swiss Roots
212-599-5700 +1022
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