Alain Valdés Sierra

Alain Valdés Sierra

Prize for Cuban popular dance music

With the 2013 National Music Prize recently awarded to Pupy César Pedroso, they are still paying off outstanding debts with the popular music genre with more followers in Cuba and that this time does justice to one of its most celebrated exponents. Pupy contributions are undeniable, there is the unmistakable sound of Los Van Van, who created this orchestra with Juan Formell and José Luis Quintana, Changuito, and the commendable work he has developed leading his group Los que Son son . The chance to converse with Pupy allows to take a tour of the last five decades of popular dance music , with all its flaws and successes, its high points , and allows a fairly complete overview about the paths that follow the genre today that , that as he told OnCuba , is in need of greater visibility. The popular music has incalculable force in our country, he said, is a much underutilized resource. I have had the opportunity to visit other countries on several continents and seen as national rates over any foreign fashion, but in Cuba the music consumption has been met by these trends at the expense of our cultural values. The Cuban genres...

Paco with his Flamenco soul

He came on stage and without a word he began to do what he does best: play the guitar. And it is that way; from Paco de Lucia you cannot expect anything other than listen to the unimaginable what he can get out caressing the strings of his instrument. They say that flamenco is not the same after Paco or Francisco Sánchez Gómez, Christian name given him by his parents, Don Antonio and Doña Lucia, back in Algeciras, Cádiz, when he saw the light in 1947. No one ever imagined that this restless child would revolutionize flamenco from its foundations with his magical guitar playing and the way we conceive the evolution of a genre that had been there for centuries before he was born. All that and more the exceptional Cadiz musician gave the Cuban public with his spectacular performance at Havana's Karl Marx Theatre, invited to the Fifth Chamber Music Festival by that other great, maestro Leo Brouwer. For more than 26 years Lucia did not stepped on Cuban soil, so that expectations for the night were quite high, for both the public and the musicians. Flamenco took over the room, but taken to a higher plane for...

Virgin of Charity of Cobre: symbol of Cuban Identity

This September 8 marks 401 years since the mystical appearance of the image of the Virgin of Charity of Cobre, patroness of Cuba. Her arrival in this land forever transformed the idiosyncrasies of those born into it, and today, four centuries later; those who revere her maintain a faith that transcends the logic of reason. The chronicles state that "it happened in the early seventeenth century In a small canoe, three workers looking for salt plied the waters of the eastern and northern Bay of Nipe. When they saw floating between the soft foam of the waves, a small whitish lump that they seemed to be a bird, the day began to dawn and they paddled out to meet it. " "Her clothes were dry despite surfing on a weak tablet, in which some big letters saying I AM THE VIRGIN OF CHARITY". Since then she is revered by Catholics and those adored by uprooted from Africa and their descendants, who see her as Oshun, goddess of love and money, owner of freshwaters. Cachita, as it is popularly known, has been glorified to embody the sacred values ​​of a nation that was forged in the contrast between the salt of...

Polito Ibanez to Release CD made of Poems Set to Music

Cuban singer Polito Ibáñez will present some themes of his latest album Ante tus ojos (Before your eyes), in a concert he will give on Saturday at the Karl Marx Theater in Havana. This CD, recorded by Colibri Record Label that belongs to the Cuban Music Institute, contains verses of over a dozen Cuban prominent poets and its presentation is part of the program of the 22 nd Cuba 2013 International Book Fair.

The Charangón of Cuba moves like a steamroller

For many Elito Revé y su Charangón is the most successful popular dance music's band these days. The acceptance for their most recent albums and the depth to which several of their singles have penetrated people, are enough support to that opinion. It's hard not to sin of heresy if you consider the high level and convening power of bands of similar cut in the Cuban music scene, but the truth is that La Reve, as it is also known, has been for a "long time" at the top of the charts.

Buena Fe begins the year with moving the Dial

The popular duo Buena Fe is engaged in preparations for the concert presentation of Dial, its latest album, on February 8-9 at the Karl Marx Theater in Havana City. For many it is impressive the work rate with which Israel Rojas and Yoel Martinez assume music creation and production, and is that in just over 13 years together, guitar in hand and good personal songs, Buena Fe has presented seven discs of singular success inside and outside our borders.

Ninety birthday of Cuba’s Vedette Rosita Fornés

The 90th birthday of Cuba’s Vedette Rosita Fornes will be celebrated with a grand concert on February next, at the Avellaneda Hall of the National Theatre of Havana. The show, scheduled for half past eight in the evening, will include fragments of operetta and zarzuela that Fornés successfully performed during her artistic career, Alfonso Menéndez, president of the gala, told OnCuba.

Ana’s film soon to be premiered throughout Cuba

Ana's film, the latest film by Cuban director Daniel Diaz Torres, will be released on Thursday 17 in the national premieres circuit. The feature film, produced by the Cuban Institute of Cinematographic Art and Industry (ICAIC), is a comedy about an actress (Ana) without much professional luck that tests to her histrionic abilities to the limit. Due to exceptional circumstances, Ana becomes the director of a mock documentary that includes her among its protagonists.

My mark has been singing as a Cuban

Eva Griñan is considered by many a true "Diva of trova", at least in her native Santiago de Cuba. Listening to her singing is a real privilege, even at 60, her voice retains the gift of charming when she sings anthological themes like La rosa oriental, Pensamiento or Lágrimas negras. Eva owns a vast repertoire; in more than four decades dedicated to music she has tackled almost all popular genres due to her immense interpretative conditions.

Carlos Varela celebrates three decades of career

The popular Cuban singer Carlos Varela will offer two concerts in the second week of January to mark his 30 years of artistic life and he will have important national and foreign guests. For these celebrations, to be held at the Avellaneda Hall of the National Theater of Cuba, the artist will be accompanied by American musician Jackson Browne, Brazilian Ivan Lins, the renowned Nicaraguan salsa singer Luis Enrique and Puerto Rican Eduardo Jose Cabra, the Visitante of Calle 13, says Varela´s official website.

BisMusic celebrates two decades of its creation

Variety of concerts, CDs and intense promotional work of artists from this record label, will characterize the campaign for the celebration of the 20th anniversary of the foundation of BisMusic of Artex. The festivities will begin on December 22nd with the presentation of David Blanco and his guests at Karl Marx Theater; the famous Cuba singer will use this opportunity to put into the audience´s consideration his latest CD, ¨Amigos¨ (Friends), told On Cuba Ela Ramos, BisMusic´s general manager.

The perpetual search of a better music

Frank Fernández, one of the most important pianists of the world, played the instrument for the first time when he was only four years old and soon he promised his mother he would never leave it. Proud to have kept his word, critics recognize him as the maker of the contemporary Cuban school of piano, he is a symbol of the national culture and one of his most successful ambassadors.

Sintesis celebrates with music its new anniversary

The legendary band Sintesis turned 36 years and they are going to celebrate it with style through a concert at the Mella Theater in Havana next December 6th. Its director Carlos Alfonso told OnCuba the show will also be the ideal opportunity to put an end to the tour they have made throughout different Cuban provinces. Alfonso added the celebration is also a kind of tribute to the International Festival of New Latin American Cinema, which holds its 34 edition from December 4 to 14.

International Choral Workshop to Focus on Cuban Music

The First International Choral Workshop, to be held in Havana from June 30 through July 6, 2013, will have as its main theme the interpretation of Cuban music written for choirs. The event, sponsored by the CORAHABANA Festival, will bring together the directors of professional, university, community and vocal groups, and teachers, Madelaine Masses, deputy director of the National Center of Concert Music told On Cuba.

A new opportunity for young jazz musicians

Fifteen years after its first edition, the Young Jazz Musicians Competition, Jojazz, will hold a new version with the participation of talented young musicians from various regions of Cuba and abroad. This is a sign of the good health this genre and this competition enjoys in Cuba. From November 22 through the 25th, more than thirty contestants will compete in the categories of performance and composition, for children and seniors, with a new venue: the Tito Junco Hall of the Bertolt Brecht Cultural Complex.

Cuban Chamber Music

The Historical Center of Havana hosts these days the 10th Cuban Chamber Music Festival, which is characterized by the participation of groups from across the country and the variety of their repertoire. Renowned pianist Frank Fernandez, Honorary Chairman of the event, told OnCuba that the event pursues, above all, the promotion of the work of groups of this type of format across the country.

Eliades Ochoa Launches Three New CDs

With the trilogy of albums under the name "The most recent of Eliades Ochoa", the prominent Cuban musician presents to the market a sui generis production made at the Enterprise of Recordings and Musical Editions (EGREM) studios. The CDs are "My guitar sings", "Eliades Ochoa and Jigüe Band" and “A bolero for you ", the latter nominated for a Latin Grammy in 2012 for Best Traditional Tropical Album.

Totó La Momposina Presents Cuba with the Magic of her Drums

At the rhythm of drums, maracas and clarinets, and with the huge faith that grants her the knowledge of being a worthy defender of a culture as rich as the treasures of the Inca emperors, Sonia Bazanta – the name she was baptized with, only known to very few – arrived in Havana. This form of introducing her does not mean anything to many, but if we call her Totó La Momposina, that is enough to bring out the Caribbean element we all carry in our blood and dance until exhaustion following her world-famous drums.

Labeque Sisters and North American Music in Havana

Talent, professionalism and the selection of an exquisite repertoire were the letters of introduction of the duet made up by French pianists Katia and Marielle Labeque, special guests of the Fourth Leo Brouwer Chamber Music Festival. North America in its Music, name of the show performed by the spectacular interpreters, became a unique opportunity for the Cuban public to appreciate their qualities as musicians when they interpreted renowned works of U.S. composers Philip Glass, George Gershwin y Leonard Bernstein.