Cuba Absolutely

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Cuba Absolutely
WHAT’S ON
HAVANA
!
Praise be to Our
Virgen de la Caridad
BY Victoria Alcala
Just when you think
you know Cubans
BY Conner Gorry
D'DISEGNO.
Respuesta
cubana!
Through
October p 13
V Festival Leo
Brouwer de
Música de
Cámara
Sep 24 – Oct 13
p 32
PRODUCED BY
Havana Guide
to the Best
Places to eat,
Bars, Clubs
& Museums
p 49
.COM
OCT
2013
.COM
Cuba Absolutely is an independent platform, which seeks to showcase the best in Cuba culture,
life-style, sport, travel and much more...
we seek to explore Cuba through the eyes of the best writers, photographers and filmmakers,
both Cuban and international, who live work, travel and play in Cuba. Beautiful pictures, great
videos, opinionated reviews, insightful articles and inside tips.
ALL ABOUT CUBA, ALL THE TIME
HIGHLIGHTS
HAVANA
RESTAURANT
GUIDE
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The Ultimate Guide to Dining
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Over 100 videos including
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OUR CONTRIBUTORS
We are deeply indebted and extremely grateful to all of the writers and photograohers who have
shared their work with us. We always welcome new contributors and would love hear from you if
you have developed a Cuba-related project, idea, photo series or article. You can contact us at
[email protected]
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Leo Brower (Sep 28, 2013)
by Alexander Mene
EDITORIAL
Cover picture by Alexander Mene on
Sep 8th, 2013 at the procession of Our
Lady of Charity (La Virgen de la
Caridad) around Nuestra Señora de la
Caridad Parrish in Centro Habana.
Welcome to our new look - What’s On Havana for October 2013. Any feedback, comments
and suggestions are always welcome. [email protected]
We have added a number of featured articles this month including a profile of Havana’s
Horse Whisperer - Miguel Ginarte, a piece on Cubans devotion to Our Lady of Charity (La
Virgen de la Caridad), Conner Gorry’s always insightful ‘Just when you think you know
Cubans’ as well as detailed profiles and reviews of Maria Cienfuegos, Sue Herrod and Danza
Combinatoria’s Tributo a El monte.
The V Festival Leo Brouwer de Música de Cámara is this month’s highlighted event with a
program that has managed to combine in an innovative and daring way the traditional with
the contemporary. Don’t miss Paco de Lucía en vivo (he is the soul of flamenco); De Vivaldi
al minimalismo and the more ‘classical’, De sonatas, conciertos y fantasias.
Elsewhere the Museo de Bellas Artes continues its centenary program with exhibitions by
Mario Carreño. If you like design you will love D’DISEGNO. Respuesta cubana! curated by
Concha Fontenla at Factoría Habana and featuring Cuba’s best young designers.
If dance is your thing, highlights include the Ballet Nacional de Cuba (Teatro Mella, Oct
9th), the premiere of Coincidencias produced by the Irene Rodríguez’s Spanish dance company at the Teatro Nacional (Oct 18-19th) and Retazos’s Momentos produced by Isabel
Bustos (Oct 16th).
In Havana’s theatre scene if you missed the brilliant Las lágrimas no hacen ruido al caer last
month now’s you chance for it has an extended run at the Café Teatro Bertolt Brecht. The
always audaciously good, (and not a little controversial), Teatro El Público, is performing
Antigonón at the Teatro Trianón.
October is Brazilian cultural month with a varied program including a series of feature
films, shorts and documentaries dedicated to the Leon Hirszman (Oct 7-13 at the Cine
Chaplin).
Finally, October 20th (which is Cuban National Culture Day) marks the 145th Anniversary of
the Cuban National Anthem, La Bayamesa, which was heard for the first time when rebel
troops led by Carlos Manuel de Céspedes freed the city of Bayamo in 1868. Viva Cuba!
Miguel Ginarte – Havana’s Horse
Whisperer
BY Margaret Atkins
p6
Just when you think you know Cubans
BY Conner Gorry
p8
Praise be to Our Lady of Charity!
BY Lucia Lamadrid
p 11
CONTENTS
OCTOBER 2013
María Cienfuegos: using photography
to overthrow the tedium
BY Ricardo Alberto Pérez
p 18
Rosario Cárdenas & Danza Combinatoria’s Tributo a El monte
BY Victoria Alcala
p 21
V Festival Leo Brouwer de Música
de Cámara
BY Victoria Alcala
p 32
Up Into the Silence
Interview WITH Sue Herrod
Contents
p 36
Caldosa & rum for the fiesta del barrio
BY Victoria Alcala
p 46
The birth of the Cuban National
Anthem
BY Lucia Lamadrid
p 47
HAVANA
CULTURE
THIS MONTH
HAVANA GUIDE
The best places to eat in Havana p 49
The best bars & clubs in Havana p 52
Havana’s best museums p 55
.COM
Plastic arts
p 12
Photography
p 16
Dance
p 19
/ Ballet
/ Modern dance
Music
p 23
/ Classical music
/ Jazz
/ Trova & bolero
/ Salsa/timba
/ Heavy metal concerts
/ Contemporary fusion
Theatre
p 39
Other events in Havana
For Kids p 44
Other events
p 45
With a passion for Cuba
p 43
PAGE 3
Miguel Ginarte –
Havana's Horse
Whisperer
by Margaret Atkins
Drive down 5th Ave in Havana's Miramar neighborhood,
and when you reach the road to Pabexpo on 146th Street,
turn left and just ask the locals to guide you to Miguel
Ginarte's Finca. Don't worry, you won't get lost; everybody
knows where the finca is and how to get there.
Look for the dirt road that takes you to the entrance. On
one side, you'll see a paddock; on the other, a long line of
carriages like the ones used in colonial days. Park your car
and walk up to the door of the modest wooden building.
When we arrived, a sheep lying next to the entrance lifts
his head and stares at us.
Ask any of the people who are coming and going for Miguel
Ginarte. If it's morning, they'll probably tell you that he's
having breakfast (the only meal of the day he doesn't skip).
They'll take you to the living room where you will walk past
an assortment of prizes, diplomas, and
acknowledgements.
While you wait, take time out to observe the decor. The
living room, like the rest of the house, looks more like a
museum and warehouse than a dwelling. Family pictures
vie for space with pictures of important Cuban political
and entertainment figures. Antique clocks, sewing
machines, a wide collection of ties, kerosene lamps,
saddles, hats and even an antique washbowl with running
water clutter the room. But let me give you some
information on the man before you meet with him.
Miguel Ginarte was born in the eastern part of Cuba, the
son of Dora Ginarte and Adriano Ricardo González. When
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
his mother was in labor, his dad took his mom on
horseback to see the doctor and on horseback they
brought him home after his birth. That's his explanation
for his love of horses and why he is able to communicate
with these animals so easily. So much so that he is dubbed
“The Horse Whisperer.” As a kid, he would ride any horse
that crossed his way, even the ones that would only allow
their owners to come near them. In his teens, he would bet
100 pesos that he could break in even the wildest horses.
And he always won. He is now 73 years old and continues
to be an exceptional horseman. Every day, he rides his
magnificent white Arabian horse around the ranch that
fills his entire existence.
Speaking of the ranch, this is not your old every day, runof-the-mill rancho. The branches of many trees hold old
vehicle bodies, which Ginarte has placed there with the
help of a crane. You'll also find safes, carriage wheels,
typewriters, furniture, earthenware, and anything that
you can name. Miguel and his people rescue these objects,
restore them and keep them for use in a film or TV show.
The ranch is attached to the Department of Scenography
of Cuban Television and provides animals, plants, and
vehicles for shows. I recall at least three “telenovelas” set
in the countryside, which have been shot there.
But perhaps, the most outstanding part of the finca and
Ginarte is that it has become a sort of “rehabilitation”
center for teenagers with behavioral issues. Under
Ginarte's guidance, these kids become hardworking men,
who will take on any chore on the ranch and act as extras
and even stuntmen for film and television. One story that
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 6
I bet you're thinking that you already know this person
who you'll be meeting in a while. But you're still in for a few
surprises. Listen to his anecdotes from his time in the
Rebel Army, or when he fought in Ethiopia. But under his
stern glance, there is a bottomless well of tenderness.
Go and join him and his kids one afternoon in cleaning the
grounds. And after you have experienced the hospitality of
these people; and you have talked with the neighbors of
Las Canteras (who want to change the name of their
neighborhood to Miguel Ginarte Community); and you
have ridden a horse that Miguel himself has chosen for
you, then spread the news:
has become a legend with the workers of the Cuban
Institute of Radio and Television is the time that Ginarte
needed to bring some horses from the province of
Camagüey: a couple of his kids brought them crosscountry on a journey that lasted 18 days.
His work with these kids did not always have the blessing
of the powers that be. In the beginning, they were
nicknamed Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. However, hard
work, discipline and bucketfuls of love proved that he was
on the right track. Miguel Ginarte and his kids clean the
beach and help firemen after hurricanes.
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
There is a small ranch in Havana that is run by a man who
was born in Dos Ríos, the place where Cuba's Apostle of
Independence and National Hero, José Martí, died. And
this man and this ranch have the ability to restore the faith
in human betterment, even to diehard skeptics.
Miguel's doors are always open to friends.
Continue to read full article + slideshow
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 7
Just When you think
you know Cubans
by Conner Gorry
Loud, machista, brand-loco, bossy, gold medal (but loose
and slippery) lovers: one – or several – of these
stereotypes applies to most of the Cubans I know.
Its true Cubans tend to be noisy, romp with aplomb, and
sow their oats with gusto and few regrets. They are also
big talkers – 'waxing eloquent on topics about which
theyre clueless or avoiding silence at all costs; I know a lot
of women here, for instance, who never, and I mean ever,
shut their mouths, talking about whatever minor thought
skips across their brains (I always send a silent shot of
strength to the spouse when I meet a woman like this).
Then there's the Cuban classic, which I call 'blah, blah,
blah': giving a long, considered response – to an entirely
different question than the one asked. Actions belying
words also falls into this “classic” category.
These are all generalizations of course – but that doesn't
obviate their veracity. Indeed, stereotypes exist because
they apply to huge swaths of a population. And if you know
Cubans, you know that these generalizations are true for
many or even most. Which is why I've become fascinated
with stereotype-defying folks here. People who break the
mold anywhere have always intrigued me, but Cuba has
traditionally emphasized unity over individuality, is small
and (relatively) isolated, meaning there are fewer moldbreakers.
These are what I call, for lack of a better term, 'not-veryCuban' Cubans. Each one was born and raised here, lives
on the island still, went to all the same schools, political
rallies and lame concerts (Air Supply, ahem) as the rest, but
exhibit few typically Cuban traits. Sure, they're missing
teeth, can be unreliable, and are prone to slack; in the end,
they're a product of their context and yet…not.
I've met a couple of their kind over the years, but recently
I've come to know several fairly well – they intrigue and
puzzle me in equal measure. For instance, not one of them
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
has been off-island and each works for the state (as well as
'por la izquierda' because that's how survival rolls here).
Age might be a factor – the folks I write about are between
25 and 40 – but I'll have to think more on that since I don't
have the analytical energy just now. By chance (or not),
each person described below is also male, but again, my
analytical reserves fail me.
What I'm coming to realize as I write this is that place – la
siempre fidelíssima Isla de Cuba – has much to do with
their character (each is proud to be Cuban), but little to do
with their mold breaking: these people would be, and will
be, who they are, no matter where they are.
The Musician:
I'm not sure I've met a Cuban as callado as this guy in the
nearly dozen years I've lived here. He's so quiet he makes
me nervous. Have I insulted him? Is he bored? Does he
simply have nothing to say? This last I discount not only
because he has that 'still waters run deep' thing going on,
but also because when he's on stage playing his cuttingedge compositions, he speaks volumes.
When I asked a mutual friend: 'what gives with Daniel? I've
known my share of strong, silent types, but he kind of
takes it to the extreme, doesn't he?' She laughed. 'Yeah,
I've known him my whole life and I'd swear he was born in
Europe instead of La Ceiba.' Quiet, measured, urbane, and
bling-free: he actually reminds me of some New Yorkers I
know, this 'not very Cuban' Cuban.
The Born Again:
One of Cuba's new frontiers is being mapped out by pews
and altars, chapels and collection plates (big, deep ones).
As an agnostic skeptical of all organized religion and
someone who has seen both the good and bad wrought by
evangelical churches throughout Latin America, I have to
say all the conversion going on around here has me
concerned. The phenomenon is replicating itself from
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 8
Sandino to Baracoa, with record numbers of converts
packing pews most nights and some days too, as they
attend bible study, Sunday school and other church-y
activities (see note 1). The people I know in Havana who have
been sucked in belong to these churches are usually either
not too bright or dealing with some social issue –
alcoholism or delinquency, for instance.
But not my 'not very Cuban' Cuban friend, who breaks
even this mold: he's smart, has a good job, a wife, his own
transport, a nice place to live and two happy, welladjusted children. Furthermore, he was always more of a
rebel than a joiner, rejecting the mob mentality. Flash
forward to any recent Sunday, however and he's wholly
subsumed by one of these churches – to the tune of
several times a week for 8 hours at a clip. And the
proselytizing has begun, with non-responders feeling the
freeze-out.
The Gamer:
Hyper observant and curious, this 'not very Cuban' Cuban
takes people to task for littering and 'envidia' (see note 2),
has lovely manners, smells naturally great in the heart of
summer (see note 3), and pardons himself when he
(infrequently) interrupts. He's also vehemently antigossip and comfortable being alone – criteria enough to
make him a peculiar Cuban. Surely this aversion to the
maddening crowd is the gamer in him – he admits to
shutting himself in for 8 hours or more when he's
mastering a new game – but I thought everyone here was
hard-wired for social gad flying. To an extent, anyway.
This guy, however, would hole up on a mountaintop with
just the bare necessities given the chance, which sounds
extreme even to me, a solitary mountain girl at heart.
In another inversion of a Cuban stereotype, he's not afraid
to ask questions, learn about what he doesn't know, and
pursue new experiences – including hard work. He's got a
hunger for knowledge and the confidence to seek it out I
don't see that often in Cuba's 20-somethings. It's
refreshing and hopeful, especially because it comes from
the next generation, too much of which has lost hope here.
Notes
1. Let me emphasize that I'm referring to anti-scientific, charismatic
churches (what's sometimes referred to as neo-charismatic or neoPentecostal), not the traditional kind where you go on Sunday to pray
and catch up with the congregation. The kind that freak me out are the
ones where the pastor fairly preys on his flock, encouraging adoration of
him and distance from non-believing friends and family.
2. This is a very negative, very Cuban concept which literally translates as
'envy' but runs much deeper, to the roots of want, need, greed, and
paranoia.
Continue to read full article + slideshow
Conner Gorry is one of the most insightful writers about Cuba. Author of Here is Havana blog
(http://hereishavana.wordpress.com/), she also puts together the Havana Good Time iPad/Phone/Touch
application http://itunes.apple.com/app/havana-good-time/id385663683?mt=8 (Android version)
http://sutromedia.com/android/Havana_Good_Time - essential guide to What's On in Havana.
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 9
Praise be to Our
Lady of Charity!
by Lucia Lamadrid
While many Cubans are by nature somewhat skeptical
when it comes to religion, it doesn't take much of a mishap
before “Our Lady of Charity” (often known by the more
intimate “Cachita”) is invoked for believers and nonbelievers alike. The church is well aware that while some
people venerate the Marian image of Our Lady of Charity,
while others worship Ochun, the Orisha of love and
money, the river Goddess, who always wears yellow and
others manage to worship both the Christian virgin and
the goddess of the Yoruba religion syncretized in one.
The image itself is syncretic – part of a process that has
occurred through the centuries. The white man, the black
man and the mulatto that lie at her feet in a small boat is a
reminder of the three men– one black and two Indians–
who found a small wooden statue of the Virgin Mary
holding the child Jesus in her arms while sailing around
the Bay of Nipe in the early 17th century. The statue was
fastened to a board with an inscription saying “I am the
Virgin of Charity.” This is the same diverse, multiracial and
devout Cuban people that now make the pilgrimage, rain
or shine, and adorn the road with yellow sunflowers,
calling out to her over and over: “Praise be to Our Lady of
Charity!”
For the Catholic world as a whole, September 8th marks
the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. She is venerated in
many countries, cities and regions as their patroness,
usually under a specific title or apparition. This is the case
of Cuba, which celebrates that day as the feast day of Our
Lady of Charity.
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
Every year, several thousands of Cubans of all ages, races
and social position accompany the statue in the
traditional procession that takes place in the workingclass neighborhood of Centro Habana. This tradition was
taken up again after the historic visit of Pope John Paul to
Cuba in 1998. The statue of the Virgin is carried on a
platform followed by a throng people that carry candles or
flowers – sunflowers mostly. Many wear yellow, which is
the color that identifies Our Lady of Charity. The people
walk solemnly for several blocks around Nuestra Señora
de la Caridad Parrish in Centro Habana. The procession is
headed by Jaime Ortega, Archbishop of the Archdiocese of
Havana.
This past September 8th 2013, was no different in Havana.
During the procession, the people sang hymns, prayed
and shouted Viva! to Cuba's Patroness and the Church.
Other people followed the procession from the rooftops
and porches of their homes. The procession ended at the
Parrish of Our Lady of Charity where the Archbishop said
Mass and made an appeal for peace around the world, in
particular Syria.
Although the principal celebration on this day takes place
in Santiago de Cuba at the Virgin's National Sanctuary, this
beautiful and moving demonstration of faith takes place
all over Cuba. Our Lady of Charity is a symbol of identity
for Cubans wherever they may be, and her significance
transcends the Catholic faith to the culture and history of
Cuba.
Continue to read full article + slideshow
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 11
ART
! MARIANO EN
CONTEMPORÁNEO
GALERÍA LA ACACIA
THROUGH NOVEMBER 25
Mariano en contemporáneo is an exhibition of 41 drawings
by the Cuban painter Mariano Rodríguez (1912-1990), one
of the most important artists of the so-called Havana
School.
Centro de Arte
Contemporáneo
Wifredo Lam
THROUGH DECEMBER 1
Memorias de la obsolescencia is a selection of videos from
the Ella Fontanals-Cisneros Collection with works by
artists of different nationalities and styles dating from the
beginnings of this manifestation to the present day,
including Mariana Abramovic, Francys Alÿs, Magdalena
Fernández, Ana Mendieta, Song Dong, Cao Fei, Jimmie
Durham, Miguel Ángel Ríos and Francesca Woodman.
Special emphasis is made on Latin American
contemporary art.
LOS COLORES DEL
SONIDO
GALERÍA SERVANDO
THROUGHOUT OCTOBER
Artists Eduardo Roca (Choco), Nelson Domínguez, Liang
Domínguez, Alberto Lescay, José Luis Fariñas, Roberto
Fabelo and Roberto Camilo Fabelo joined forces in
Colores del sonido (Colors of Sound) on occasion of the
Leo Brouwer Music Festival.
Museo Nacional de
Bellas Artes.
Edifico de Arte Cubano
THROUGH NOVEMBER
Mario Carreño: donde empieza la luz, dedicated to Cuban
painter Mario Carreño, one of the principal figures of
Cuban and Latin American avant-garde, exhibits 30 oil
paintings and drawings made by the artist between 1937
and 1957, considered his most productive period.
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 12
Gracias cerebro por dejarme en paz.
Remedies for imsomnia
Idania del Rio
Exhibition D’DISEGNO
Respuesta cubana!
Exhibition D’DISEGNO. Respuesta cubana!, curated by Concha
Fontenla, includes artworks created by over twenty artists related to artistic design –epistemological field that merges the
frontiers between design as production mean and knowledge,
and art as a way to give expression to aesthetic and conceptual
experiences–, and is set to be open on September 20, 8:00 pm in
Factoría Habana.
The display’s title refers to the DISEGNO etymology, defined in
the 15th century by Alberti as a “plane that was born out of the
spirit, and implemented in lines and angles”, drawing, project,
prefiguration of “what it will be”, idea and form, a process that
supports creation, from its intellectual conception of material
concretion. Respuesta cubana is a contribution by Jorge Rodriguez (R10), who, through the poster created for this event, proclaims a “call for creative production”. In order to contextualize
this topic, it would be necessary to tackle the present and fertile
relation between design as technology and art as practice, as
knowledge.
Jorge Rodriguez (R10)
The chosen artists are: Adriana Arronte, Marlén Castellanos,
DeKuba, Idania del Río, Daniel DeMilán, Liliam Dooley, Mayelín
Guevara, Osvaldo González, Gabriel Lara (Gabo), Celia Ledón,
Octavio César Marín, Fabián Muñoz, Gean Moreno, Ernesto
Oroza, Nelson Ponce, Eduardo Ponjuán, Roberto Ramos, Luis
Ramírez, Yimit Ramírez, Jorge Rodríguez (R10), Edel Rodríguez
(Mola), Alejandro Rosales, Eduardo Sarmiento, Eric Silva, José
Ángel Toirac, Raúl Valdés (Raupa) and Arantza Vilas.
Factoría Habana
Experimental center
for present-day artistic
creation
O´Reilly 308 entre entre
Habana y Aguiar, Habana
Vieja
Eduardo Sarmiento
Nelson Ponce
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Mayelín Guevara & Eric Silva
With a passion for Cuba
Roberto Ramos
PAGE 13
ART
CENTRO DE DESARROLLO DE LAS ARRES VISUALES
Through
MUSEO NACIONAL DE BELLAS ARTES.
Throughout
October
Edificio de Arte
Cubano
Evocación lírica exhibits, for
the first time ever, 18 paintings
by National Visual Arts
Prizewinner 2012, Ever
Fonseca, an indefatigable
maker of fables and recreator
of legends from the Cuban
countryside.
October 14
In Huellas, a project that
includes installations, video as
well as interaction and
intervention in public spaces,
artist Vladimir González
Portales revisits what seems to
be an obsessive theme in Cuban
contemporary art--migration.
VITRINA DE VALONIA
Throughout
October
Through an interactive
installation, Night Scene
Illusion, the young artist
Yusnier Mentado refers ti
childhood memories and
frustrations of the generation
born in the 1980s, a reflection
of social disenchantment.
Selección natural, by Ana Iris
Texidor, who based on the style
of Japanese manga, depicts
peculiarities of urban tribes
which may nullify
individualities.
GALERÍA -BIBLIOTECA RUBÉN MARTÍNEZ VILLENA
CENTRO HISPANO AMERICANO DE CULTURA
Throughout
October
This year's Ceramics Biennial
competition included over 150
pieces (sets and installations
with vessels, panels and tiles.
Prizewinners were Javier
Martínez (Margen), Alejandro
Cordovés (Los colores de la
vida), Guillermo R. Malberti,
(Tras las huellas, pequeña
historia de amor y desamor),
Glaucia Basulto, Alder
Calzadilla and Jorge Jacas, while
Ramiro Díaz (Cartuchos) was
given a Special Mention. Also
on exhibition are pieces by
ceramist Fernando Velázquez
Torres, prizewinner at previous
Ceramic Biennials.
Through
October 14
Dibujos tontos, group show by
Yornel Martínez, Adriana
Arronte, Irvin Vera, José
Eduardo Yaque and Orestes
Hernández, combines free and
easy strokes with the sensitivity
of the so-called “ordinary man.”
GALERÍA HABANA
Through
October 11
Expo sin concepto is the latest
exhibition by Lázaro Saavedra,
prominent figure of the Cuban
art boom of the 1980s, who
assimilates the vernacular and
an incisive and mordant humor
into his conceptual production.
HOTEL HABANA LIBRE
Throughout
GALERÍA COLLAGE HABANA
Throughout
October
This gallery recently reopened
with an exhibition of works by
over 30 outstanding Cuban
artists, such as Nelson
Domínguez, Manuel Mendive,
Ernesto García Peña, Mabel
Poblet, Sandra Ceballos,
Cirenaica Moreira, Ernesto
Rancaño, Angel Ramírez and
Lázaro Saavedra. Collage
Habana will sell originals,
reproductions and silk screen
prints.
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
October
Jesús Lara Sotelo pays tribute
to music, in particular to Nueva
Trova and guitar, in the
exhibition Yo también sueño
con serpientes with 15 large
paintings that are accompanied
by music scores that have been
intervened by the artist.
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 14
Museo Nacional de Artes Decorativas
Galleries & Studios in Havana
7th and 60th Studio
Casa de los Artistas
Unique studio-gallery
started showing the
work of four young
artists
Works by Zaida del Río,
Fabelo, Rancaño, Pedro
Pablo Oliva
www.cubartspace7y60.com
Calle Oficios #6 (second
floor), entre Obispo y
Obrapía, Old Havana
(07) 862-8986
Centro de Arte
Contemporáneo
Wifredo Lam
Centro Hispano
Americano de
Cultura
Showcases visual arts
in developing countries
Cultural center
Casa-Estudio
de José Fuster
Centro de Arte
La Casona
Fascinating excursion
to see Cuba’s Gaudiesque
One of Havana’s leading exhibition spaces
Calle 226, esquina 3A,
Jaimanitas
(07) 271-3048
Calle Muralla #107,
esquina San Ignacio, Old
Havana
(07) 861-8544
Cristo Salvador
Gallery
Centro de Desarrollo
de las Arres Visuales
Something completely
different in Cuba’s
burgeoning art world
Malecón No 17 e/ Paseo de
Contemporary art
center on Plaza Vieja
San Ignacio #22, esq.
Empedrado, Old Havana
Martí & Capdevila, Centro
Habana
(07) 860-6282
Calle 11 No 1104 entre 14 y
16, Vedado
Espacio Aglutinador
Factoría Habana
Fototeca de Cuba
Run by Sandra Ceballos, who also lives in the
space
Experimental center
for present-day artistic
creation
The largest, most
valuable collection of
Cuban photographs
Fundación Ludwig
de Cuba
Calle 25 #602, entre 6 y
8, Vedado
(07) 830-2147
O´Reilly 308 entre entre
Habana y Aguiar, Habana
Vieja
Mercaderes 307 e/
Muralla y Teniente Rey,
Plaza Vieja, Habana Vieja
(07) 862-2530
Galería La Acacia
Galería Habana
High-end and
well-stocked commercial gallery
One of Havana’s most
established galleries
Galería Victor
Manuel
Calle San José #114, e/
Industria y Consulado, Old
Havana
Línea #460, entre E y F,
Vedado
(07) 832-7101
(07) 861-3533
Galería Villa
Manuela
Museo Nacional de
Bellas Artes
Exhibiting some of the
best contemporary
Cuban artists
Cuba´s largest and
most impressive permanent art collection.
Calle H, e/ 17 y 19, Vedado
Trocadero entre Zulueta
y Monserrate, Habana
Vieja
(07) 832 2391
.COM
Mainstream decorative
modern paintings
San Ignacio 56, esq. a
Callejón del Chorro,
Habana Vieja
(07) 861-2955/866-9268
Pabellon Cuba
Modern architectural
building, HQ to Association Hermanos Saiz
Calle 23 y Calle N,
Vedado
(07) 835-0822
With a passion for Cuba
San Ignacio 352, esq. a
Brasil (Teniente Rey),
Plaza Vieja, Habana Vieja
(07) 862 3533
Penthouse of a
five-storey building,
with breathtaking view
Calle 13 #509, 5to piso,
entre D y E, Vedado
(07) 832-4270
Galería Servando
Small gallery next door
to Cine Chaplin
Calle 23 y 10, Vedado
(07) 831-1101
Taller Experimental
de Gráfica de
La Habana
Cuba’s only engraving
workshop
Callejón del Chorro #62,
Old Havana
(07) 862-0979
PHOTOGRAPHY
DIÁLOGOS URBANOS
FOTOTECA DE CUBA
THROUGHOUT OCTOBER
This exhibition by photographers Pedro Abascal from
Cuba and Santiago Escobar-Jaramillo from Colombia
takes a look at different urban realities, although with a
certain conceptual and formal closeness.
Pedro Abascal
“I consider myself as a very curious person with a great capacity to be surprised; that's perhaps what makes me see the world
through the viewfinder of my camera and allows me to explore everything that attracts my attention, and to a certain extent
enter that which remains hidden, awaiting to be discovered.
Throughout my career as a photographer, I have developed a number of series that embody my overall interest in the human
condition, the pictures place man in his own environment as he goes about his daily business. It could be considered as a
photo-documentary, although it is not my aim to document anything but a self-portrait. The images form a poetics of the
mundane as it is precisely in the commonplace of the day-to-day where man leaves a deep and enormous trace of his
existence, seeking to achieve the right balance between reality and mystery.
In my concern, photography is that commonplace where a simple gesture becomes poetry.”
http://pedroabascal.com
LOS PRIMEROS
PADRES
GALERÍA LATINOAMERICANA, CASA DE LAS
AMÉRICAS
OPENS OCTOBER 4
This is an exhibition of photographs of 20th-century
natives of Central and South America taken by
renowned photographers Chambi, Graciela Iturbide,
Paolo Gasparini, Nereo López, Nair Benedicto, Lucía
Chiriboga and Juan Manuel Díaz Burgos, among others.
The pictures are from the Haydee Santamaría Art of
Our America collection of Casa de las Americas.
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 16
PHOTOGRAPHY
CASA OSWALDO GUAYASAMÍN
THROUGH OCTOBER 17
Thirty black and white photographs by Chilean Fernando Morandé give a poetic view of different cities from the
eastern part of Cuba.
INVENTARIO ÍNTIMO
PALACIO DE LOMBILLO
THROUGHOUT OCTOBER
Inventario íntimo
Architect and photographer María Eugenia López
exhibits 18 small and medium-sized pictures created
through digital printing.
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With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 17
María Cienfuegos:
using photography to
overthrow the tedium
by Ricardo Alberto Perez
For María Cienfuegos, photography is revelation. In her
work, she explores small detained universes, microcosms
frozen by the will of man, details that betray a new future
for elements that used to depend on a natural cycle. For
instance, in her Naturaleza Muerta [Still Life] (2012), she
explores the artificial eyes of the birds transferred to an
absurd hyper-realism.
But María Cienfuegos also calls on family to have their
portraits taken. Families are situated in different scenes,
in different attitudes and at different kinds of events.
These families are sometimes photographed in public
places and at other times in their homes. This is a series
she has been working on since 2008 and she seems to have
found a vast array of expressions.
Maria believes that photography should be used to impose
a new order on things that have been tediously organized.
Photographs should not obey; they should overthrow the
tedium and enter into the frank territory of art. She
cannot renounce any special concept of beauty; she
knows there are less visible fragments of memory.
María Cienfuegos' work has no pretentious overtones.
She seems to have cultivated patience in which she trusts
and which helps her to achieve her images. Living and
dead organisms are placed side by side whether it is a dog
show (Best in show -2008/ 2010) or a herbal record
(naturaleza muerta II- [Still Life II] 2011). No matter what
the image, each photo tells a story that can be interpreted
with the utmost freedom and provoke multiple ideas.
Continue to read full article + slideshow
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With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 18
DANCE
SPANISH DANCE
COINCIDENCIAS
SALA AVELLANEDA. TEATRO NACIONAL
OCTOBER 18-19, 8:30PM; OCT 20, 5PM
World premiere of Coincidencias produced by the Irene
Rodríguez Spanish dance company.
Born in Havana, she began studying Spanish Dance in the Spanish Cultural Society “Centro Andaluz” (Andalusian Centre)
of Havana. Within months, she began off the record, and as “an exceptional case” to take classes with the professional
company Ballet Español de Cuba, since her talent was remarkable in spite of being a young girl. In 1993, she was
admitted at the National Academy of Spanish Dances sponsored by this company. She graduated in 1999, after 5 years of
study.
She played her first leading roles as a student in the formerly mentioned academy. In addition, she was part of the corps
de ballet of the Ballet Español de Cuba in the main pieces presented by this company.
In July 1999, after graduating as a dancer, she immediately became a regular member in the very same Ballet Español de
Cuba, where, after being evaluated several times, she became Prima ballerina in 2007, as well as Specialized Professor
and Reggiseur of First Level and Choreographer.
As part of her professional education she has taken part in workshops, courses and master classes by the most relevant
Spanish dancers and choreographers in Cuba, Spain, and Mexico.
As prima ballerina, professor, reggiseur, and choreographer of the Ballet Español de Cuba, she successfully danced
several times all the leading roles of the ballets performed by the company, as well as solo roles in all the company's
performances.
In September 2001, she detached herself from the Ballet Español de Cuba, creating her own company of Spanish dance.
In Cuba, she has performed in the main theatres througouth the island, and she has been interviewed for many radio and
TV shows, as well as for the written and digital press, both in Cuba and abroad.
In January 2012, she founded her own company: Compañía Irene Rodríguez
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With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 19
DANCE
BALLET
BALLET NACIONAL DE
CUBA
TEATRO MELLA
OCTOBER 9, 8:30PM
Concert program: En las sombras de un vals (choreography
by Alicia Alonso, music by Josef Strauss), Preciosa y el aire
(choreography by Alicia Alonso, based on the poem of the
same name by Federico García Lorca, music by Ángel
Barrios Fernández), Diálogo a 4 (choreography by Alicia
Alonso, music by Ignacio Cer vantes), Umbral
(choreography by Alicia Alonso, music by Johann Christian
Bach), scenes from Act Two of Giselle (choreography by
Alicia Alonso based on the original by Jean Coralli and Jules
Perrot, music by Adolphe Adam), Pretextos (choreography
by Alicia Alonso, music by Claude Marbehant), Desnuda luz
del amor (choreography by Alicia Alonso, music by Ernest
Chausson), Impromptu Lecuona (choreography by Alicia
Alonso, music by Ernesto Lecuona).
DANCE THEATER
MOMENTOS
SALA LAS CAROLINAS
OCTOBER 16, 7PM
D a n z a Te a t r o R e t a z o s p r e s e n t s M o m e n t o s ,
choreographed by the company's director, Isabel Bustos.
Retazos (literally Bits & Pieces)
In 1987, dancer and choreographer Isabel Bustos, who at
first gave performances in the living room of her home,
founded a company through which she could express her
interests: the sublimation of emotions, through an avantgarde technique that would serve the purpose of
expressing and integrating dance with other arts--visual
arts, music, cinema and literature. Since 1996, the
company holds the International Dance Festival in Urban
Landscapes: Old Havana, City in Motion, taking
advantage of suggestive old streets, plazas and buildings
of Havana's Historical Centre to display the
communicative and improvisational potentials of
dancers and choreographers. Important works include
Mujeres, Carmina Burana, Las lunas de Lorca and Peces
en las manos. This really is a personal favorite and should
form part of the itinerary of anyone who has an interest in
modern dance.
www.danzateatroretazos.cu
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 20
DANCE
Rosario Cárdenas &
Danza Combinatoria's
Tributo a El monte
by Victoria Alcala
It is a commonplace to say that El monte, by the Cuban
anthropologist Lydia Cabrera, is the Bible of Afro-Cuban
religions. This is why some people were surprised when
Rosario Cárdenas—National Dance Prizewinner
2013—announced that she and her company Danza
Combinatoria were working on Tributo a El monte
[Tribute to El Monte]. Having said this, however, I dare say
no one questioned Cárdenas's capability to delve into the
dense plot of this iconic book of Cuban culture.
Although the choreographer had forewarned that she did
not aim to make a version of Cabrera's monumental book
and that her piece was simply based on it, I nevertheless
kept asking myself how Cárdenas would manage to stage
the key elements of a text that has baffled many readers
who believed they would find a sort of “Santeria manual”
and discovered that the book is of a disconcerting
conceptual and poetic denseness.
The key to the piece was poetry. While Cabrera used this
to explore the view of the Africans who had been brought
to Cuba and their descendants—a topic that had rarely
been studied in her time—to reveal their voices, myths,
practices and experiences, Cárdenas grasped the spirit of
this “book of books” through her unique method of
creation, in which she applies combinatorial analysis and
José Lezama Lima's poetics. And following in the steps of
the great poet, narrator and essayist, who said that only
that which is difficult can be stimulating, Rosario
Cárdenas presented her many followers a difficult, yet
extraordinarily attractive piece.
given. The lights, the plain set design, the showing of
audiovisuals and the wardrobe—although at times
impractical—all contributed to the dancers' performance.
This was especially enhanced by the music entrusted to
one of the most daring and intelligent contemporary
Cuban composers, Juan Piñera; to DJ Iván Lejardi, whose
work has matured by leaps and bounds; and to the rap
group Fuera de Norma, who performed on stage.
A piece of non-linear structure, complex symbolism and
figurative denseness, sometimes reiterative and
sometimes disconcerting (like the book that inspired it),
Tributo a El monte needs to go on stage again, because,
like Lydia Cabrera's work and the Bible itself, it demands
more than one reading.
This show was performed at the Teatro Mella on September 6th & 7th,
2013.
Continue to read full article + slideshow
With an atmosphere that took the audience by surprise
from the very moment they set foot in the house thanks to
its plant motifs, the choreography demanded of the
dancers an almost visceral adoption of its many
incarnations, beyond a technique that was of course a
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With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 21
Centro Cultural El Gran Palenque
Dance & concert venues
Major venues for all forms of dance & concerts
Gran Teatro de
La Habana
Teatro Nacional
de Cuba
Stages ballet opera,
zarzuela and Spanish
dance
Recently renovated,
where the best performances are
Calle Prado entre San
Rafael y San José, Old
Havana
(07) 861 3077 / 5873
Paseo y 39, Plaza de la
Revolución, Vedado
Teatro Mella
Teatro Karl Marx
1,500-seat theatre
used for dance, folklore, circus and variety
show
The best-equipped
and largest venue in
town
Línea No. 657, entre A y
B, Vedado
(07) 833-8696
Calle 1ra, esquina 10,
Miramar
(07) 203-0801
Modern Dance groups in Havana
Compañía de la
Danza Narciso
Medina
Compañía Rosario
Cárdenas de Danza
Combinatoria
Danza
Contemporánea
de Cuba
Oriental and martial
dance arts dance and
movement in performance style
Innovative and creative
group gaining fabulous
reviews
Cuba’s legendary and
most celebrated
modern dance group
Centro de Danza de la
Habana. Prado No. 111, e/
Genios y Refugio
(07) 878-6765
Teatro Nacional de Cuba.
Paseo y 39, Plaza de la
Revolución
(07) 879-6410
Cine Teatro Favorito.
Belascoaín, esq. Peñalver,
(07) 878-2650
Retazos
Led by the inspirational Ecuadorian spitfire
Isabel Bustos
Teatro Las Carolinas.
Calle Amargura No. 61,
entre Mercaderes y San
Ignacio
(07) 866-0512
Rumba & folkloric venues
Cabaret
Callejón de Hammel
Cabaret Tropicana
Cabaret Parisién
Legendary Vegas-style
extravaganza under
the stars
Beautiful dancers,
intimate locale, at
Cuba’s most historic
hotel
Salvador González
Escalona is proud to
have Cuba’s most
popular open-air art
gallery, which has
become a shrine to
Afro-Cuban religions
through the artist’s
stunning pictorial fantasies. At the weekend
this small space comes
alive with the beating
of drums as one of the
best places to experience Cuban rumba.
Callejón de Hammel, e/
Hospital y Aramburu,
Centro Havana
(07) 878 1661
Centro Cultural
El Gran Palenque
Every Saturday afternoon the troupe hosts
the Sábado de la
Rumba, a mesmerizing
show of Afro-Cuban
religious and secular
dance and drumming
at El Gran Palenque in
Vedado. Unless you are
100% “patón”, you can
expect the three hours
of rumba, guaguancó
and yambú to get you
moving.
Calle 4, entre 5ta y Calzada (7ma). Vedado
Tel. (07) 833-9075
.COM
Calle 72 No. 4504, entre
41 y 43, Marianao
(07) 267 0110 / 1717-8
Hotel Nacional, Calle O,
esquina 21, Vedado
(07) 873 4701 ext. 129
Habana Café
Cabaret Turquino
Where Vincent Vega
would get his ten-dollar shake in Havana
Stunning view from
26th floor. Retractable
roof, up market performances
Hotel Meliá Cohíba,
Avenida Paseo, esquina
3ra, Vedado
(07) 833-3636
With a passion for Cuba
Habana Libre Hotel. Calle
L, e/ 23 y 25, Vedado
(07) 838-4011
MUSIC
CONTEMPORARY FUSION
& ELECTRONIC
Electronic dance party on Calle G – September 2013
(Casa las Americas in background)
The contemporary fusion and electronic music scene has fragmented somewhat over recent months as new bars and
clubs have opened and a number of promoters of one off parties have established themselves. While we have made a few
suggestions and reviewed some of last month's best parties really you will simply have to keep your ear to the ground and
try and get and get on the text list. We will post on the facebook page Cuba Absolutely Facebook page details when we have
them.
For lovers of Yonki (really more reggaeton) you should check out the Sunday matinee at the Neptuno-Triton hotel starting
at 2pm recently. It is also worth bearing in mind that sometimes the best party is simply in the street, at least when street
is G street (see photo above from a recent party there on the Avenue of Presidents where some of the cool kids still hand out).
CAFÉ CANTANTE MI HABANA. TEATRO NACIONAL
CENTRO CULTURAL FRESA Y CHOCOLATE
Tuesdays, 5pm
Performances by To Mezclao
Mon, 10:30pm
Oct 7, 11pm
Performances by Manana Club
Dj Wichy del Vedado, uno de
los más famosos Djs de La
Habana, con lo mejor de música
World.
CENTRO VASCO
CASA DE LA MÚSICA DE MIRAMAR
Sundays, 11pm
Mondays, 5pm
With Son as the foundation of
their music, the band Klimax,
directed by Giraldo Piloto,
incorporates elements from
jazz, pop, rap, punk, and
Caribbean rhythms.
Fridays,
midnight
Performances by Karamba.
DIABLO TUN TUN
Saturdays, 11pm
Performances by Aceituna sin
Hueso.
Performances by El Micha
CENTRO CULTURAL BERTOLT BRECHT
Oct 2 & 9, 10pm
Performances by Roberto
Carcassés e Interactivo.
Oct 6 & 13, 10pm
Performances by Déja-vu.
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With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 23
Emmy Alfonso's 'Para
Mestizar'; cultural
diversity through
music
by Lucia Lamadrid
Para Mestizar has received the support of the UNESCO
Regional Office for Culture in Latin America and the
Caribbean, the Ministry of Culture of Cuba, the Cuban
Institute of Music, and the Spanish, Norwegian, British
and French embassies in Cuba.
Director: Joseph Ros
Voice and music: Eme Alfonso
Lyrics: Pedro Luis Ferrer
Producers: Eme Alfonso and Ismael Sayyad
A year and a half after the project known as “Para
Mestizar” began, it has finally completed the video. Young
Cuban composer and singer Eme Alfonso and filmmaker
Joseph Ros aim to show Cuba's cultural diversity through
this music video that promotes equality, diversity,
intercultural dialogue and social cohesion against
discrimination and exclusion.
Eme Alfonso, winner of the Cubadisco 2009 Best Fusion
Album Award, lends her voice and music to the project,
while Joseph Ros, winner of the Lucas 2011 Awards for Best
New Artist, Best Video of the Year, Best Fusion Video, and
Best Artistic Direction with Eme Alfonso's song “Buscando
la inspiración,” is the director of the video. Pedro Luis
Ferrer, one of the leading members of La Nueva Trova,
wrote the lyrics.
The music video, which mixes Cuban and Latin music with
soul and jazz, will be presented to the national and
international press on October 14, prior to the celebration
of Cuban Culture Day on October 20. The four-minute
video is the result of the magical experience of traveling
throughout Cuba in search for answers regarding the
mixture of races in Cuba. It will be aired on Cuban
Television in January 2014.
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 24
MUSIC
JAZZ
Café Jazz Miramar
(cine Miramar ), Calle 5ta Esquina A 94, Miramar Playa.
Opens 2pm - Shows: 10:30pm - 2 Am - Cover: 50.00 Mn Or Cuc 2.00
This new jazz club has quickly established itself as one of the very best places to hear some of Cuba's best musicians
jamming. Forget about smoke filled lounges, this is clean, bright – take the fags outside. While it is difficult to get the exact
schedule and in any case expect a high level of improvisiation when it is good it is very good. A full house is something of a
mixed house since on occasion you will feel like holding up your own silence please sign! Nonetheless it gets the thumbs
up from us.
CAFÉ MIRAMAR
LA ZORRA Y EL CUERVO
Oct 1, 11pm
Jesús Fuentes (sax and
composer) and Santo Tomás
Connection.
Oct 2, 11pm
Yadasny Portillo (pianist and
composer) and the band Cauce.
Oct 4, 10pm
HURÓN AZUL, UNEAC
Oct 10, 2pm
Oct 3, 11pm
Alexis Bosch (pianist)
Oct 4, 11pm
Launching of the CD Colectivo,
by percussionist Lukmil Pérez,
accompanied by the group
Santa Amalia's Friends.
Oct 5 & 12, 11pm
Roberto Carcassés (pianist), his
trio and guests
Michel Herrera (sax and
composer)
Peña La Esquina del Jazz, hosted
by showman Bobby Carcassés.
CASA DEL ALBA CULTURAL
Oct 13, 8pm
Performance by Ruy LópezNussa (percussionist) and La
Academia
MUSEO NACIONAL DE BELLAS ARTES
Oct 3, 7pm
Edificio de Arte
Cubano
Eduardo Barroetabeña
(percussionist) and the band
Oddara in concert.
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With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 25
MUSIC
BOLERO, FOLKLORIC, SON & TROVA
GERARDO ALFONSO
MUSEO NACIONAL DE LA MÚSICA
OCTOBER 23, 5PM
Singer-songwriter Gerardo Alfonso, whose songs range
from social comment to ballads and songs in praise of
national heroes, combines traditional Cuban genres such
as trova and son with rock, pop, and Brazilian and
Caribbean rhythms.
CAFÉ TEATRO BERTOLT BRECHT
Tony Ávila, a favorite of the young generation thanks to
his lyrics and sense of humor.
Fridays, 10pm
An informal get-together with singer Omar Amehd.
October 5, 4pm
Un Bolero para Ti, with Rafael Espín and guests.
October 26, 4pm
CASA DEL ALBA
CASA DE ÁFRICA
Oct 4, 8pm
With his beautiful and powerful
voice, Eduardo Sosa and guests
perform highlights of the best
Cuban trova of all time.
Oct 31, 6pm
Performance by Vicente Feliú,
one of the founders of the
Cuban Nueva Trova movement,
and guests.
Oct 5, 4pm
Performance by the
rock/folkloric rock band
Síntesis
Oct 12, 4pm
Performance by the folkloric
group Obiní Batá
CASA DE LA CULTURA DE PLAZA
Oct 12, 7 pm
CENTRO IBEROAMERICANO DE LA DÉCIMA
Oct 5 , 3pm
Performance by the duet Ad
Libitum.
Oct 27, 4pm
El Jardín de la Gorda with the
performances of trovadores
from every generation.
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
Peña with Marta Campos,
renowned singer of
contemporary songs with a
trova feel to them
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 26
MUSIC
BOLERO, FOLKLORIC, SON & TROVA
HURÓN AZUL, UNEAC
CAFÉ CANTANTE, TEATRO NACIONAL
Oct 12, 10pm
Fridays,
5 pm
Performance by popular David
Álvarez and his band Juego de
Manos.
Saturdays,
5 pm
Performance by Waldo
Mendoza, one of Cuba's most
popular singers today.
Mundito González is one of the
most popular Cuban bolero
singers.
CASA DE LA AMITAD
Oct 13, 3pm
Get-together with the vocal
quartet Génesis
Oct 20, 3pm
Get-together with Maureen
Iznaga, whose select repertoire
includes favorite Cuban and
international love songs.
CASA BALEAR
Oct 18, 5 pm
Tardes de Boleros, hosted by
singer Maureen García.
CASA MEMORIAL SALVADOR ALLENDE
Oct 25, 6 pm
Peña La Juntamenta, with
trovador Ángel Quintero and
guests
CENTRO CULTURAL FRESA Y CHOCOLATE
Tuesdays, 7pm
Performances by Fernando
Bécquer, singer-songwriter of
piquant humor and contagious
rhythm.
Wednesdays,
9pm
Performances by the young
singer Milada Milhet.
Saturdays,
10:30pm
Performance by Yeni
Sotolongo, a young singer who
boasts an exceptional voice and
varied repertoire.
Sundays, 6pm
Performances by pop idol
Adrián Berazaín, who combines
pop and rock with Cuban song.
CENTRO CULTURAL PABLO DE LA TORRIENTEBRAU
Oct 26 , 5 pm
A Guitarra Limpia is a meeting
with trovadors accompanied
only by their guitars.
CAFÉ CONCERT ADAGIO
Thursdays,
10 pm
Performances by Maylú, the allround singer of the moment,
whose repertoire goes from
arias of famous operas to
Cuban, Latin American and
international pop hits.
JARDINES DEL 1830
Tue & Thu,
8:30pm;
Tue & Thu,
8:30pm
Performance by one of the
most popular bands in Cuba,
Moncada will play an extensive
repertoire of Cuban and Latin
American music.
PIANO BAR TUN TUN
Thursdays,
5pm
Peña with trovador Ray
Fernández.
CASA DE LA MÚSICA DE MIRAMAR
ASOCIACIÓN YORUBA DE CUBA
Saturdays,
5 pm
Fridays,
8:30pm
Performance by the folkloric
group Obiní Batá.
Sundays,
4 pm
Performance by the folkloric
group Los Ibellis.
La Utopía combines live
performances by troubadours,
impromptu performances by
the audience, and videos of
important domestic and
international musicians of the
past 50 years.
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With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 27
MUSIC
RAP, HIP-HOP
LA SESIÓN AT DELIRIO
HABANERO
TEATRO NACIONAL
FRIDAYS, 4PM
Cuba's newest spot for rap lovers, La Sesión includes rap as
well as the best DJs in Havana, singers and musicians from
other genres as well as visual artists and actors from the
stage. Shows are hosted by the Cuban actress Edenis
Sanchez and rapper Bárbaro “El urbano” Vargas. La Sesión
is sure to become the rap/hip-hop's spot in the Cuban
capital.
CANCHA DE COJÍMAR
MAQUETA DE LA HABANA
Oct 12 2:00pm
Oct 26 5:00pm
Anónimo Consejo and Brebaje
Man.
Hermanazos.
ROCK
CAFÉ CANTANTE, TEATRO NACIONAL
DIABLO TUN TUN
Sundays
4:00pm
Fridays 5:00pm
(Casa de la
Música de
Miramar)
Los Kents, a “dinosaur” of
Cuban rock, play their hits from
the 60s and 70s.
Performance by the rock band
Gens.
SALSA / TIMBA
CASA DE LA MÚSICA DE MIRAMAR
DIABLO TUN TUN
Oct 1, 8, 15, 22 &
Pedrito Calvo y La Justicia
Oct 3 11:00pm
Oct 2, 9, 16, 23 &
Juan Guillermo
Oct 2, 9, 16, 23 y
Adalberto Álvarez y su Son
Oct 7, 21, 28,
11:00pm
Sur Caribe
29, 11:00pm
José Luis Cortés y NG La Banda
CASA DE LA MÚSICA HABANA
30, 5:00pm
30, 5:00pm
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Oct 2 5:00pm
Combinación de La Habana
Oct 2 & 9
11:00pm
José Luis Cortés y NG La Banda
Oct 3, 10, 17, 24
Pupy y los que Son Son
& 31, 5:00pm
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 28
MUSIC
CLASSICAL
BASÍLICA MENOR DE SAN FRANCISCO DE ASÍS
6:00pm
Oct 5
Oct 12
Concert by the chamber
orchestra Música Eterna,
conducted by Guido LópezGavilán, with guest pianist Aldo
López-Gavilán.
Oct 19
Pianist Cecilio Tieles and
violinist Evelio Tieles will play
pieces from the classic Cuban
19th century composer Nicolás
Ruiz Espadero.
Oct 26
A group of young musicians will
play works by composers from
the nations that make up the
Visegrád Group: Hungary,
Poland, Czech Republic and
Slovakia.
Oct 19
Recital by pianist Ulises
Hernández.
Sep 28
Pianist Vilma Garriga, soprano
Ivette Betancourt and cellist
Amparo del Riego will offer a
program based on preludes and
ballads by Russian composers
Mikhail Glinka, Pyotr I.
Tchaikovski, Reinhold Gliere,
Sergei Rachmaminoff and
Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov.
Camerata Romeu, conducted by
its director Zenaida Romeu, will
play a selection from the opera
ópera Carmen, by Bizet.
ORATORIO SAN FELIPE NERI
4:00pm
Oct 1
Oct 5
Cuban and Latin American
compositions played on the
piano by Nelson Camacho.
Pianists Marita Rodríguez and
Ulises Hernández, and violist
Anolan González will pay
tribute to Cuban composers
Harold Gramatges and Alfredo
Diez-Nieto.
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With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 29
MUSIC
CLASSICAL
IGLESIA DE PAULA
5:00pm
Oct 4
Organist Moisés Santiesteban
has announced a program of
19th-century pieces for organ.
Oct 18
Performance by the quintet
Ventus Habana, conducted by
Alina Blanco, and guests
Oct 25
The Ars Longa Early Music
Ensemble, conducted by Teresa
Paz, will play worls by Austrian
composers Wolfgang Amadeus
Mozart, Joseph Haydn and
Heinrich Biber.
Oct 20
Recital by soprano Ivette
Betancourt and pianist Maite
Aboy.
Oct 27
The duo Promúsica, with
Alfredo Muñoz (violin) and
María Victoria del Collado
(piano), has announced a recital
with compositions by
Beethoven.
Oct 20
Tarde de Concierto, conducted
by the soprano Lucy Provedo.
Oct 27
De Nuestra América, conducted
by pianist Alicia Perea.
Oct 19
Concert by the Nueva
Camerata quintet.
Oct 26
Recital by guitarist Víctor
Pellegrini.
SALA IGNACIO CERVANTES
5:00pm
Oct 13
Oct 15
Concierto poético en La
Habana: orilla de las mujeres
fértiles is a meeting with
authors Nancy Morejón y
Marifé Santiago, who will read
their poems accompanied on
the piano by Pura Ortiz.
Soprano Johana Simón,
accompanied on the piano
Beatriz Batista, will sing works
by Cuban women operatic
composers.
CASA DEL ALBA CULTURAL
5:00pm
Oct 6
Oct 12
Performance by Haskell
Armenteros and his Ensemble
Nueva Camerata
En Confluencia, conducted by
guitarists Eduardo and Galy
Martín.
BIBLIOTECA NACIONAL JOSÉ MARTÍ
5:00pm
Oct 5
Oct 12
Recital by pianist Huberal
Herrera, who specializes in the
work of Cuban composer
Ernesto Lecuona.
Performance by the Entrevoces
chorus.
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With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 30
MUSIC
CLASSICAL
CENTRO HISPANO-AMERICANO DE CULTURA
5:00pm
Oct 19
Concert by the chamber orchestra Solistas de La Habana, conducted by María Elena
Mendiola.
SALA GONZALO ROIG. PALACIO DEL TEATRO LÍRICO NACIONAL
Oct 13, 5:00pm
Recital by the guitar quartet
Ébanos de La Habana.
Oct 20, 7:00pm
Concert by Ensamble Nueva
Camerata.
Oct 27, 5:00pm
Cuerda Dominical, with
guitarist Luis Manuel Molina.
Sundays,
11:00pm
Concerts with the Orquesta
Sinfónica Nacional.
SALA COVARRUBIAS, TEATRO NACIONAL
Oct 16, 8:00pm
Recital by Schola Cantorum
Coralina, with guest guitarist
Víctor Pellegrini.
MUSEO NACIONAL DE LA MÚSICA
5:00pm
Oct 2
Recital by the duo Promúsica, made up of violinist Alfredo Muñoz and pianist María
Victoria del Collado.
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With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 31
5th Leo Brouwer Chamber Music
Festival
Through October 13
Organized by the Leo Brouwer Office, the 5th Leo
Brouwer Chamber Music Festival began this past
September 24 and will continue until October 13, 2013. For
the first time, it left Havana and traveled to the city of
Santiago de Cuba where the splendid Sala Dolores theater
was chosen to receive the prestigious Cuban and
international musicians from September 24-26
Tribute was be paid to Cuban composer Harold
Gramatges and a lecture was given on the rich musical
heritage of Santiago de Cuba. The lecture was illustrated
with performances by the Orfeón de Santiago and the
Orquesta Sinfónica de Oriente. Although the focus of the
festival is naturally chamber music, the event also
includes debates, talks, film showings, exhibitions and
book, CD and launchings.
From September 28th to October 13th , the festival will
continue in Havana. Its organizers have announced the
participation of musicians from ten different countries
plus over forty world and national premieres. Two
exhibitions, Memorias de un Festival (Memories of a
Festival), with photographs by Gabriel Guerra Bianchini,
Iván Soca and Silvio Rodríguez, and En Viaje con Calvino
(Traveling with Calvino) by Marco Marini, opened at Sala
de la Diversidad on September 30. The exhibitions are a
tribute to the renowned Italian author Italo Calvino, born
in Santiago de las Vegas, Cuba, on the 90th anniversary of
his birth. Later that same day, Iglesia de Paula was chosen
for the concert Órgano Plus with organist Vincent
Bernhardt and double bassist Victor Soto, along with
musicians from Il Delirio Fantástico and the Ars Longa
Early Music Ensemble, who played pieces by Arnolt
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Schlick, Michelangelo Rossi, Louis Couperin, Dietrich
Buxtehude, Johann Sebastian Bach, Antonio Vivaldi and
from the Robertsbridge Codex. The Centro HispanoAmericano de Cultura will show a series of videos on opera
starting on September 25, Mondays, Wednesdays and
Fridays at 3:00 pm
The Cuban composer Leo Brouwer, who has been
acknowledged as one of the living geniuses of classical
music in the international arena, has been, since its
inception, the heart and soul of the festival through his
supervision and total devotion. With regard to the festival,
Brouwer has said: “Our policy is not figure-oriented, but
rather repertoire-oriented…We have the privilege of
having excellent Cuban musicians and first-rate young
artists performing the best versions that exist in this
regard, perhaps not the only ones, but certainly the best.”
Leo Brouwer (Havana, 1939) has created more than 300
musical pieces and is currently the composer of classical
music whose scores are most performed in the world,
according to the SGAE (General Association of Authors
and Publishers).
The 5th Leo Brouwer Festival has become one of the best
music events held this year thanks to the excellence of
participating singers and musicians, and a program that
has combined skillfully--and originally and daringly I
might add--the traditional repertoire with the
contemporary. It is not easy to recommend any particular
concert for October, they're all so good and I hope not to
miss any. But if I were pressed to do so, my top three notto-miss would be Paco de Lucía en vivo (Paco de Lucía
Live), who is the soul of flamenco; De Vivaldi al
minimalismo (From Vivaldi to Minimalism), what a
combination!; and for those who prefer something more
“classic”, De sonatas, conciertos y fantasías (Sonatas,
concertos and fantasias).
Continue to read full article + slideshow
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 32
Program
5th Leo Brouwer Chamber Music Festival
Paco de Lucía en vivo, concert by the flamenco guitarist Paco de Lucía and his group / TEATRO KARL MARX
Wednesday, October 2, 9pm
A special highlight in this year's festival will be the participation of guitarist and composer Paco de Lucía. It has
been 26 years since his last performance in Cuba and Brouwer explained that although De Lucía had always longed
to return to Cuba, his tight schedule had always kept him from doing so. At 65, Paco de Lucía is considered one of
the best guitarists worldwide and has received many awards in his career, including the 2004 Prince of Asturias
Award. The much acclaimed Spanish musician will receive the 2013 Cubadisco, the most important music award in
Cuba.
De Vivaldi al Minimalismo / SALA AVELLANEDA, TEATRO NACIONAL
October 3, 8:30 pm
Musicians: Il Delirio Fantastico and Conjunto de Música Antigua Ars Longa.
Program: Electric Counterpoint for guitar ensemble, by Steve Reich, directed and adapted for old instruments by
Leo Brouwer, Enrike Solinis on guitar; Concerto da camera for recorder, strings and basso continuo in D major, RV
92, by Antonio Vivaldi; Yellow Page from Telephone Book by Michael Torke; Concerto da camera for recorder,
strings and basso continuo in A minor, RV 108, by Vivaldi; Paisaje cubano con lluvia, by Leo Brouwer; Concierto for
mandoline, nows and organ in G major, RV 532, by Vivaldi; John´s Book of Alleged Dances for string quartet
cuarteto de cuerdas y loops, de John Adams; Concerto da camera para recorder, oboe, dos violines y bajo continuo
en do mayor, RV 87, de Vivaldi; In C para ensamble libre, de Terry Riley.
Wagner vs. Verdi / SALA AVELLANEDA, TEATRO NACIONAL
October 4, 8:30 pm
Musicians: Cuarteto de cuerdas Presto; wind quintet Ventus Habana; wind quintet qui Santa Cecilia; Fadev Sajundo,
trumpet; Orquesta de Cámara de La Habana.
Program: Cuarteto de cuerdas in E minor, vy Giuseppe Verdi; Retrato de Wagner con Mathilde for flute, viola,
guitar and string orchestra, by Leo Brouwer; Verdiana for orchestra, by Leo Brouwer; Wesendonck Lieder for voice
and piano, by Richard Wagner, texts by Mathilde Wesendonck
De Sao Paulo a La Habana / SALA AVELLANEDA, TEATRO NACIONAL
Oct 6 , 5:00 pm
Musicians: Adelia Issa, soprano; Edelton Gloeden, guitar; Niurka González, flute; guitar quartet Quaternaglia;
Orquesta de Cámara de La Habana; Ballet Rakatán.
Program: Uana lus & Kalimbas, by Egberto Gismonti; Mãe d'Água for voice and guitar, by César Guerra-Peixe; Oriki
de Erinlé for voice and guitar, by Paulo Costa Lima, texts in yoruba by Ordep Serra; Canção do amor for voice and
guitar, by Heitor Villa-Lobos, text by Dora Vasconcellos; Fragmentos de Tres canções de Inês for voice and guitar,
by Ronaldo Miranda, text by Inês Cavalcanti; Ilharga, Osso for voice and guitar, by Antonio Ribeiro, text by Hilda
Hilst; Ponteio for guitar, by Mozart Camargo Guarnieri; Duas canções for voice and flute, by Mozart Camargo
Guarnieri, text by Manuel Bandeira: Mitología de las aguas, sonata No. 1 for guitar and flute, by Leo Brouwer;
Variaciones sobre el tema de Xango for guitar quartet, by Almeida Prado; Sweet mineira pa guitar quartet, by
Sergio Molina; Concierto Itálico for guitar quartet and string orchestra, by Leo Brouwer.
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With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 33
De Caturla a Valera / CASA DEL ALBA CULTURAL
October 6, 5pm
Musicians: chamber chorus Vocal Leo.
Program: Canto de los cafetales, by Alejandro García Caturla, texts by Alejo Carpentier; Nadie lo tiene, by Harold
Gramatges, texts by Nicolás Guillén; “Pablito clavó un clavito”, “Nana Caliche” and “Tengo un gato” by Rondas,
refranes y trabalenguas, texts and music by Leo Brouwer; Tres canciones, by Beatriz Corona, texts by Abel Acosta;
A veces, de Electo Silva, texts by Nicolás Guillén; Yo no quiero más luz que tu cuerpo, by Guido López-Gavilán,
texts by Miguel Hernández; Que rico é, music and texts by Guido López-Gavilán; Yambambó, by Emilio Grenet,
texts by Nicolás Guillén, choral version by Octavio Marín; Quisiera (Guaguancó quasi una passacaglia), music and
texts by Roberto Valera; La niña está calladita, by Roberto Valera, texts by Dulce María Loynaz; ¿Conoces un fuego
que no dé calor, music and texts by Roberto Valera; Un baile muy rápido, music and texts by Roberto Valera; Iré a
Santiago, by Roberto Valera, texts by Federico García Lorca.
Brouwer flamenco / TEATRO DEL EDIFICIO DE ARTE CUBANO, MUSEO NACIONAL DE BELLAS ARTES
October 6, 7pm
Musicians: Josué Tacoronte, guitar; Arnulfo Guerra, bass; Ruy Adrián López-Nussa, percussion; Niurka González,
flute; Silfredo Pérez, guitar and cuatro; Eduardo Bethencourt, cante and cajón; Thais Doimeadiós, dancer; Irene
Rodríguez, bailaora.
Program: with works by Leo Brouwer: Elogio by la danza, for guitar, Seguirilla; “IX Homenaje a Szymanovski”,
Nuevos estudios sencillos for guitar, Tientos; Un día de noviembre for guitar, Sonata para flauta, Fandangos;
Música incidental campesina for two guitars, Guajira; Drume, negrita for guitar; Metáfora del amor for guitar and
prerecordings; El Decamerón Negro for guitar: “I. El Arpa del Guerrero”, Tanguillos; “II. Huida de los amantes por
el valle de los ecos”, Bulerías; “III. Balada de la doncella enamorada”, Rumba; Danza característica for guitar, Poema
for voice and guitar, Rumba.
De Brouwer para Britten / BASÍLICA MENOR DEL CONVENTO DE SAN FRANCISCO DE ASÍS
October 7, 6pm
Musicians: Entrevoces Chorus; Niurka González, flute; Alberto Rosas, flute; Cello Capriccioso duet; wind quintet
Santa Cecilia; Manuel Vivar, bell; Orquesta de Cámara de La Habana.
Program: Cinco canciones florales for mixed chorus, Op. 47, de Benjamin Britten: “V. Ballad of Green Broom”, “IV.
The evening primrose” (text by John Clare); Sonatina canónica for flute, Op. 31, No. 3, by Paul Hindemith; Pieza
fantástica en si mayor, Op. 8, No. 2, for cello and piano, by Paul Hindemith; Tarantella in G major, Op. 33, for cello
and piano, by David Popper; Hungarian Rhapsody Op. 68, for cello and piano; Breves para cello, de Calixto Álvarez:
“I. Sonsoneo”, “II. Romance”, “III. Bachata”; Sonata for cello and piano in C major mayor, Op. 65, by Benjamin
Britten; Pregones de Tata Cuñengue for wind quintet, by Leo Brouwer: “I. Pregón del cuentero”, “II. Pregón de los
misterios”, “III. A la salida del sol”, “IV. Pregón del repentista”; Cantus in memoriam Benjamin Britten for string
orchestra and bell, by Arvo Pärt.
De sonatas, conciertos y fantasías / BASÍLICA MENOR DEL CONVENTO DE SAN FRANCISCO DE ASÍS
October 8, 6pm
Musicians: Enrike Solinis, baroque guitar, electric guitar and lute; Il Delirio Fantastico; Victor Soto, double bass;
Manuel Vivar, percussion.
Program: Four sonatas by Domenico Scarlatti: Sonata en sol mayor, K. 14 (Presto); Sonata en re menor, K. 32 (Aria);
Sonata en si menor, K. 27 (Allegro); Sonata en re menor, K. 176 (Cantabile andante), transcription by Enrike Solinís;
El arpa y la sombra, by Leo Brouwer; two Fantasias by Alonso Mudarra: Romanesca II o Guárdame las vacas, and
Fantasia X (que contrahaze la harpa a la manera de Ludovico); Nuevos estudios sencillos, by Leo Brouwer;
Improvisaciones sobre Marionas, Canarios and Jácaras, by Gaspar Sanz; Cumbés, by Santiago de Murzia; Concerto
da camera for recorder, oboe, violin, bassoon and basso continuo in D major, RV 94, by Antonio Vivaldi; Concerto
da camera for recorder, oboe, violin, bassoon and basso continuo in C major, RV 88, by Vivaldi; Concierto for
piccolo, strings and basso continuo in C major, RV 443, by Vivaldi.
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With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 34
Lecuona Plus / SALA AVELLANEDA, TEATRO NACIONAL
October 9, 8:30pm
Musicians: Josué Tacoronte, guitar; Trío Lecuona; Ramón Valle, piano; Yasek Manzano, trumpet; Germán Velazco,
sax; Ruy López Nussa, drums; Gastón Joya, double bass.
Program: Malagueña, La conga de medianoche, Ahí viene el chino, Siboney, En tres por cuatro, Córdoba,
Andalucía, Danza de los ñánigos, La comparsa, Y la negra bailaba, Rumba mejoral, Gitanerías, Danza negra.
Amor de ciudad grande / SALA AVELLANEDA, TEATRO NACIONAL
Oct 11 , 8:30 pm
Musicians: Dúo Ondina; Edelton Gloeden, guitar; Silfredo Pérez, guitar; Reynier Guerrero, violin; Alejandro Martínez,
cello; Adelia Issa, vocal; Pablo Milanés, voice; Miguel Núñez, piano; Sergio Félix Raveiro, bass; Germán Velazco, sax;
Edgar Martínez, percussion; Presto string quartet.
Program: Es el amor quien ve, for voice, flute, strings, piano, guitar and vibraphone, by Leo Brouwer; Elegías
martianas for flute and piano, by Leo Brouwer: “I. …Y música sentida tiene mi voz”, “II. En el arpa del ángel
silencioso”; Mi verso es como un puñal, Vierte corazón tu pena, Amor de ciudad grande, Poética, El enemigo
brutal, Yo soy un hombre sincero, Es rubia… el cabello suelto, El príncipe enano, Si ves un monte de espumas, by
Pablo Milanés, from texts by José Martí.
Esencia flamenca / SALA AVELLANEDA, TEATRO NACIONAL
October 11, 8:30pm
Musicians: Carlos Piñana, guitar; Miguel Ángel Orengo, cajón; Ernesto Oliva, piano; Orquesta de Cámara de La
Habana; Habana Compás Dance; Josué Tacoronte, guitar; Arnulfo Guerra, bass; Ruy Adrián López-Nussa, cajón;
Eduardo Bethencourt, song and percussion.
Program: El cuidado de una esencia, suite for guitar, cajón flamenco, piano and strings, by Carlos Piñana; Naseer
(Tangos) by Carlos Piñana; Rosa de invierno (Fandangos), Jerez (Bulerías), Bohemia (Taranta/Alegrías), El día que tú
me digas (Zapateado/Bulerías), Jaleos, by Carlos Piñana; Fusionando, Bulerías, by Eduardo Córdova; Danza
característica for guitar, by Leo Brouwer.
Benny Moré 50 años después / SALA AVELLANEDA, TEATRO NACIONAL
October 12, 8:30pm
Musicians: Vocal Sampling, Ensemble Gurrufío and X Alfonso.
Program: Canto al Benny, by René Baños; Dolor y perdón, by Benny Moré; Un son pa´cantar, by René Baños; Qué
bueno baila usted, by Benny Moré; Apure en un viaje (joropo), by Genaro Prieto; Ay, compae (merengue), by Henry
Martínez; Atardecer (vals serenade), by Lencho Amaro; Destello de amor, by Armando Molero; Por estos rincones,
by Cristóbal Soto; Morenita (merengue), by Pedro Oropeza; Ahora (vals song), by Otilio Galíndez; Sr. Jou, by Pablo
Camacaro; El cruzao (joropo), by Ricardo Sandoval; La Guachafita (joropo), by Alberto Muñoz; El vuelo de la mosca
(Brazilian valsinha), de Jacob do Bandolim.
Meñique a flor de labios / TEATRO KARL MARX
October 13, 5pm
Musicians: Annabel Gutiérrez, harp; Ernesto Oliva, piano; Eylín Marquetti and Manuel Vivar, percussion; Diminuto
chorus; Solfa chorus.
Program: Varias manera de hacer música con papel and Cantigas del tiempo nuevo, by Leo Brouwer.
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With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 35
Interview with
Sue Herrod
This week we talked to British composer, Sue Herrod, about the up-and-coming premier of her prize-winning concert
DVD - UP INTO THE SILENCE. This screening, which will include a Making of …and the concert itself, will last around 75
minutes. It is to be part of the prestigious Leo Brouwer Festival of Music (Sept 24th - Oct 13th, 2013) and will be shown on
Saturday, September 28th, at 5pm, in Havana´s Cine Chaplin, Vedado.
Sue has lived in Havana for almost 16 years and also writes a cultural blog and articles for various publications (including
CubaAbsolutely) about life and people on the island.
CA: Sue, can you tell us a bit about your project?
Sue: Yes, and thank you for inviting me here to talk about
my work.
UP INTO THE SILENCE (UITS) was a performance that we
gave here in Havana in June, 2012; a concert of my music
(songs) set to the poetry of the great American postmodernist, E. E. Cummings, and sung by Cuban artist,
Diana Fuentes. It was the second concert produced by our
team - QUIET NIGHTS CUBA. (QNC is myself – as
composer & Artistic Director, Darsi Fernandez and Yoana
Grass (Producers), and Idania del Rio (Designer/Visuals).
We also work with Denis Peralta (Musical Director),
Alejandro Lugo (Musical Productor), Alfonso Peña &
Scorpio (Design/Recording of the live 5.1 surround sound)
and Luis Najmias Jnr. (Film & DVD Director).
CA: Why poetry, and why E. E. Cummings?
Sue: Well, it began in 2002. I took one of Cummings´s
poems – just as a musical exercise – then completely fell in
love with it, set it to music (as a song – just piano and voice
), and then - without any plan at all - spent the next 4 years
writing just to his work! Complete instinct, really. I finally
stopped in 2004 when I had a cycle of 13 songs that I felt
really happy with. And then - with Diana (Fuentes), who
was, then, just beginning her career - we recorded a demo
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of six of those songs. We won a music prize here, with that
demo. Since then - with the release of her own solo
albums - she´s shot to fame; has just been signed by Sony.
She´s a very fine, sensitive, singer and artist, and lovely to
work with.
CA: So what made you return to this project - after a
break of 8 years?
Sue: Well…yes…fast forward to the very beginning of 2011.
One night Diana and I were chatting on Facebook - she
was living in Puerto Rico by then - and just very
spontaneously we both decided we´d like to go back to this
project; to do a proper concert of the original Cummings
songs. So I set to work. As I said, all of the originals were
just for solo piano and voice but since I´d been working a
lot with more electronic and home-made sounds - a work
I love to do with sound-man/ experimenter, Ale (Lugo) - I
reworked many of them to include that, newer, side of my
work. I also changed the format – using piano, but also a
live string quartet alongside small, and quite fragmented,
pre-recorded sounds, for example - to be played live on
drum pad and keyboard. The combination really worked, I
think – it was certainly something very different for here.
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 36
CA: And the process?
Sue: Well, I start out with the music/concert/project idea
then start brainstorming it with Idania (del Rio). She´s such
a star, thinks right outside of the box, quirky, so very
talented. Then, we´ll meet with both Darsi and Yoana.
Then…well, it's just developing the work. Me and
Alejandro, me and Denis, team meetings…and on and on.
UP INTO THE SILENCE took a couple of years of really
solid team work and involved - wonderfully, for us - some
of the very best musicians, filmmakers, photographers,
designers, actors, sound engineers, translators and
producers on the island. An amazing team. We were really
proud, then, not only to have created what we consider to
have been a beautiful music/visual project (with rotating
overhead projectors, mapping effects etc.) but to have also
brought the work of Cummings to Cuba; to an audience
who previously had no, or little, knowledge of his
incredible poetry. We have to thank Cuban poet, Omar
Perez, here, for his really meticulous and fine translations
- not easy with Cummings. And then someone who most
Cubans consider to be their finest actor (as well as their
finest comedian, by the way!), Osvaldo Doimeadios: a
brilliant artist who recorded some of the poetry in Spanish
- that we then used in the live concert.
The team - QNC - have always felt, too, that we were about
something bigger than just a concert or a project;
something that is, sincerely, very important to us. And
that's to be part of a movement of intercultural exchanges.
Interestingly, both of my projects so far have linked the
USA and Cuba. There seems to be no cultural bridge like
music and - this time – it was accompanied by some of the
most important and beautiful poetry ever written.
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
CA: We know that it's quite unusual for a foreigner to
have their work supported here, in this way. How did this
happen?
Sue: Yes, it is - and I´m not just incredibly grateful for this but also, I have to say, made very proud to be a permanent
Cuban resident. Cuba is very rich in culture - as you well
know - but it´s a poor country and so the commitment to
supporting us artists - and UITS, in this instance - is even
more remarkable, I feel. And last year I was also lucky
enough to be accepted as a member of UNEAC (the Music
& Artists Union) which is a great honour. It's a very
prestigious organization here and it means I now belong
to an official artistic institution – a great support for me
and for my work.
So, what happened is that we presented UITS to two
institutions: Producciones Colibrí and Producciones Ojalá
- with great help from Ernán López-Nussa - and, luckily,
both companies loved it. Of course, then having Diana
(Fuentes) and Aldo (López Gavilán) on board – both very
well-known and respected young musicians – was key.
Plus, having Darsi and Yoana who are simply, in my view,
the best producers around. So I am eternally grateful for
all this, and to all of these people. For readers who aren´t
familiar with the Cuban music scene Colibrí and Ojalá are
two very fine, small, Cuban record companies/labels:
Colibrí is part of the Cuban Music Institute and Ojalá is
owned by one of Cuba´s most famous musicians, Silvio
Rodríguez.
We had other, great, support: from Aurelia Productions,
from tourist agencies CTN and Cubania, and from Hector
Higuera - owner of the fine restaurant, Le Chansonnier. I
also want to thank you, CubaAbsolutely, for helping us
promote the concert, and another on-line Cuban music
company, Suenacubano, too.
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 37
two performances and I think there was a maximum of
300 people in each one. So many people, who really
wanted to see it, missed it. But now - at least - we have the
chance to show it to you as an HD DVD in the best cinema
in town - Cine Chaplin - and with the best possible sound:
we´ll set up the 5.1 surround sound there to give you the
closest experience possible to the live concert.
And the whole context for this, of course, is the Leo
Brouwer Festival. It's not just a wonderful opportunity for
us – to show the work in Chaplin – but, for me personally, a
complete honour to be included in this particular festival.
It´s one of the most prestigious and respected events in
the Cuban cultural calendar and, well, I´m extremely
grateful, very happy to be there.
CA: Where was the concert performed?
Sue: We gave two concerts of the work in Cuba´s biggest
theatre - Karl Marx - but we closed down the main part
and set everything thing in the round – public and artists –
just on the theatre stage. (That original idea came from
Ernán López-Nusa - one of Cuba´s finest jazz pianists and was a real stroke of genius). The team there were
stellar. And - thanks to Peña (plus Delio and Carlos, of
Scorpio Sound Team) - we had this amazing, specially
designed, live, 5.1 surround sound, too. The stage-floor
visuals and mapping was inspired work from Idania and
Mauricio Abad (another very talented, out-of-the-box
thinker, there). And all this - the setting, the visuals and
the sound - were a first for the theatre, and for the Cuban
public – so all of that was pretty exciting. Doing something
new is definitely very much part of any project, for us.
CA: Were you happy with the outcome?
Sue: Oh yes, very! I mean, there are always little things. In
the second concert something happened with the
lighting. Then I think the stage-floor visuals – which look
so amazing on the DVD - were not that easy, live; the
audience would need to be seated higher up, looking more
downwards, and we couldn't find a way. But overall…it was
very delicate and beautiful, I think, and the audience was
very enthusiastic. Diana sang like an angel and we also had
two very fine pianists: the lovely Aldo López-Gavilán, and
a younger, emerging talent, Darío Martín. Denis (Peralta)
was outstanding as a MD, and also conducted a wonderful
string quartet (I can´t wait to work with them again). And,
as in our first concert, we had friends Marietta González
(keyboard) and Mauricio Gutiérrez (percussion) with us.
Great people. It was a small, intimate, minimalist event –
quiet, spacious, rich colours, floating melodies, breath,
fragmented sounds ….and silence. Magical, really.
CA: A last word…..?
Sue: That I think we´ve achieved something new and quite
beautiful with UP INTO THE SILENCE and that we, as a
team, are all really proud of the outcome. Quiet Nights,
and UITS, is not just me – it's a core team, and a really
fantastic one. We´re a permanent fixture now and will
probably produce another project together in 2014. And
The UITS DVD that you´ll see on September 28th actually
won two CubaDisco prizes this year, too! One was for the
best DVD of a live concert; the other for the best setting of
poetry to music. So I hope you´ll all come to celebrate this
with us – to support us – to enjoy it – and to chat
afterwards and tell us what you think!
And, thanks - so much - to everyone.
The (world) premier of the concert DVD – UP INTO THE
SILENCE – will be screened with 5.1 surround sound on:
Saturday, September 28th, at 5pm - Cine Chaplin, Calle 23
y 10, Vedado.
Sue will be there to introduce the screening – along with
some of the musicians and production team involved in
the project – and there will be a special appearance from
actor Osvaldo Doimeadios who will read selected poetry
by E. E. Cummings.
Continue to read full article + slideshow
CA: So then, on to the DVD and the premier on
September 28th.
Sue: Well, we decided early on that we wanted to film the
concert and create a high-quality DVD. And we were lucky
enough to work with Luis Najmias Jnr. (a multiprizewinning director) who both filmed (nine cameras!)
and produced this DVD – which, as you´ve said, includes a
short Making of….plus the concert itself. Our only sadness
with the live concert was that we were only able to offer
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 38
THEATER &
PERFORMING ARTS
LAS LÁGRIMAS NO HACEN RUIDO
AL CAER
TUESDAY, WEDNESAY AND THURSDAY, 7PM
THROUGH OCTOBER
CAFÉ TEATRO BERTOLT BRECHT
Monse Duany is the legendary Cuban singer Guadalupe
Yolí-La Lupe-in the monologue Las lágrimas no hacen
ruido al caer by the late playwright Alberto Pedro. Monse
Duany is versatility itself: She creates situations of humor
and anguish, joy and sadness, understanding and
impotence. She sings, dances, recites, dreams, shouts,
cries, falls in love, suffers… She is the kind of actress that
exudes energy and passion.
Back this month for an extended run after great reviews
from the shows last month. If you haven't yet seen it you
have no excuse and you won't regret it…
DE VUELTA AL MUSICAL
[BACK TO MUSICALS]
ANFITEATRO DEL CENTRO HISTÓRICO
THROUGHOUT OCTOBER, SAT & SUN, 9PM
Alfonso Menéndez's revitalized troupe returns to the stage
of Havana's Amphitheatre in the Historic Center for a
medley of famous songs from musical theater and films.
Beautiful and suggestive music, excellent performances by
young actors and singers, and splendid costumes enhance
this production that includes selections from well-known
musicals, such as “Masquerade” (The Phantom of the
Opera); "Over the Rainbow” (The Wizard of Oz);
“Septimino” (The Merry Widow); “When You're Good to
Mama”, “We Both Reached for the Gun”, “All that Jazz”
(Chicago); “Two Ladies” and “Maybe this Time” (Cabaret);
“Yo me acaricio” (Cantando desnudos), “Singing in the Rain”
(Singing in the Rain), “I Dreamed a Dream”, “Do You Hear
the People Sing?” (Les Miserables), “Don't Cry for Me,
Argentina” (Evita), “New York, New York” (New York, New
York), “I Could Have Danced All Night” (My Fair Lady),
“Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend” (Moulin Rouge!), “One”
(A Chorus Line) and “Mamma mia” (Mamma mia!).
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 39
THEATER &
PERFORMING ARTS
SALA TITO JUNCO. CENTRO BERTOLT BRECHT
SALA CHE GUEVARA. CASA DE LAS AMÉRICAS
Tue, Wed & Thu
8:30pm
La paz perpetua, by Spanish
playwright Juan Mayorga,
produced by Compañía del
Cuartel and directed by Sahily
Moreda, uses irony, mockery
and the externalization of
violence to define the
power/subordination
relationship among the warring
characters
October 21, 4pm
Fri & Sat 8:30pm;
Mefisto Teatro, directed by
Tony Díaz, presents Muerte en
el bosque, based on a novel by
Cuban novelist Leonardo
Padura.
Sun, 5pm
SALA ADOLFO LLAURADÓ
TEATRO TRIANÓN
Fri & Sat,
8:30pm
Sun 5pm
Directed by Julio Cardoso and
Manuel Longueira, Islas de la
memoria. Historias de guerra en
la posguerra, is a sort or oral
narration that uses theater
recourses to reveal the story
behind the conflict over the
Falkland Islands. performed by
Argentenean actors Lucía
Adúriz, Alejandro Cobas,
Marcela Haimovichi, Manuel
Longueira, Pablo Maruzzi and
Cristina Suárez. This is a
production of the Teatro
Nacional Cervantes.
Antigonón, un contingente épico
(work in progress), by Rogelio
Orizondo, staged by Teatro El
Público. With only two
actresses on the stage, this
reworking of the myth of
Antigone uses recourses such
as dance, fragmentation of the
discourse and the
intersexuality to delve into
present-day concerns.
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
Fri & Sat, 8:30pm,
Sun, 5pm,
Teatro de la Luna presents
Matrimonio en blanco, by the
well-known Polish playwright
Tadeusz Rozewicz, a complex
play that revolves around
sexuality.
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 40
THEATER &
PERFORMING ARTS
XV Festival de
Teatro de La
Habana
October 25-November 3, Theaters in Havana
Although the detailed information available to the public
with a month's advance regarding the plays to be
produced is unfortunately missing this year, we
nevertheless suggest you start training now if you want to
be able to see, if not all, at least a good number of the plays
presented during the festival. You'll need to race from
theater to theater and maybe do a little boxing to buy
tickets or do a hurdle race to secure good seats at theaters
where they are not numbered, like El Ciervo Encantado or
Argos Teatro.
This year's festival, which is dedicated to the teacher,
director and actor Konstantín Stanislavski, is estimated at
around 70 plays (7 plays daily!) from 20 countries,
including Cuba, which has announced a selection of the
best productions from the past two years. As usual,
Argentina, Mexico, Spain, Colombia and Brazil, and Cuba,
will capture the attention of most theater lovers. Small
plays and unipersonals will dominate the stage, although
there will be other tempting offers, such as Deutsches
Theater Berlin, with Die Hamletmasxhine, and Teatro
Estatal Académico Vajtangov, from Russia, with Anna
Karenina.
A special highlight during the festival will be the long
awaited return to Havana's stages of the great Argentine
actress Graciela Dufau, who the Cuban public will be able
to enjoy in La mujer justa, based on Hungarian Sándor
Márai's novel The Fair Woman.
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
Also from Argentina is Marica, a one-person show by Pepe
Cibrián Campoy, presented by El Vasco Producciones. The
play describes the work of an actor imagining the final
hours of Federico García Lorca's life and his relation with
the murderer. The actor will portray Lorca, the murderer,
his mother and father, Salvador Dalí and a woman from the
town.
The German-Chilean co-production Calcetines, mentiras
y vino is a one-person musical which has been praised by
critics. The protagonist shares details of a group of friends
and his small world with music, comedy, philosophy and
poetry.
Other interesting offers are Falsa alarma, a play by the
great Cuban playwright Virgilio Piñera, produced by the
Ecuadoran company Teatro Ensayo GESTUS; and Su
Excelencia, Ricardo III, a Brazilian street theater version of
the Shakespeare classic, which is a must-see.
Like in previous years, a theoretical event will be held at
Unión de Escritores y Artistas de Cuba (UNEAC) as well as
workshops at the national School of Theater at the
University of the Arts. Prior to the festival, the Palacio de
Convenciones will be the venue for the 34th International
Congress of the International Theater Institute, from
October 20-25. The theme that will be examined during
the congress will be the perspectives for the development
of performing arts in the world.
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 41
América Teatro
Theatres in Havana
Adolfo Llauradó
Sala Teatro
América Teatro
Home of the Teatro
Estudio troupe. Varied
theatre program
Opened in 1941. Art
deco style with magnificent interiors
Bertolt Brecht
Centro Cultural
Cultural centre houses
a modern 300-seat
space called Sala
Alternativa
Casa de la Comedia
Also known as the
Salón Ensayo, it is the
base for the company
El Taller
Calle 11, e/ 11 D y E.
Vedado
Galiano 253 entre Concordia y Neptuno. Centro
Havana
(07) 862-5416
La Casona
La Colmenita
Fausto Teatro
Gaia
Adapted in 1970 as
rehearsal space for the
Teatro Estudio theatre
company
A theatre group of
children for children,
Their performances
have been widely
acclaimed
Probably the best
place in Havana for
variety and comedy
acts
An arts center that was
set up in 2000
Calle 11, e/D y E. Vedado
(07) 832-5373
Sala de la Orden Tercera.
Convento de San Francisco, Plaza de San
Francisco. Old Havana
Teatro Nacional de
Guinol
Home to Cuba’s leading
children’s theatre and
puppetry company
Calle M, e/ 17 y 19. Vedado
(07) 832-6262
Hubert de Blanck
Teatro
Predominantly stages
classics of international theater
Calzada (7ma), No. 657,
e/ A y B. Vedado
(07) 830-1011
Calle 13, esq. I. Vedado
(07)832-9359
Prado No. 201, esq. Colon.
Old Havana
(07) 863-1173
Justiz No. 18, entre
Baratillo y Oficios. Old
Havana
Teniente y Rey No. 157, e/
Cuba y Aguiar. Old
Havana
(07) 862-0401
El Sótano Sala
Teatro
Home to the Compañía
Teatral Rita Montaner.
Quite basic
Calle K, e/ 25 y 27.
Vedado
(07) 832-0630
Trianón Cine
Teatro
Home to the renowned
theatre company
Teatro El Publico
Calle Línea e/ Paseo y A.
Vedado
(07) 830-9648
.COM
With a passion for Cuba
OTHER EVENTS IN HAVANA
SEGUNDO MES DE LA
CULTURA BRASILEÑA
EN CUBA
OCTOBER 2-31
HAVANA
Lovers of Brazilian culture will have a blast with the wide
and diverse program that has been organized in which
cinema occupies a privileged space, with the Brazil Film
Club, every Wednesday, at 4 pm at Casa del Festival del
Nuevo Cine Latinoamericano, which screens and discusses
films from different epochs¸ genres and trends.
Meanwhile, the Chaplin Theater announces a series of
feature films, shorts and documentaries dedicated to
filmmaker Leon Hirszman from October 7-13. The lobby of
the theater will exhibit photographs of Hirszman work.
On the 8th, the theater of the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes will present a video on Cuban singer Yolo Bonilla, who will
also review his connection with Brazilian culture. Bonilla will sing at La Zorra y el Cuervo Club on the 12th at 2pm.
Also on the 12th, but at 7 pm, Las Carolinas Theater in Old Havana will host a performance of capoeira--an Afro-Brazilian
cultural expression that integrates dance, music and martial arts--by the groups Siré Angola and Caimán.
Casa de las Americas will join in the celebration with the exhibition Vidigal: retratos de una favela (Oct 31, 3pm), by the
author and photographer Bruna Fonte, and the presentation of Brazilian books from Casa's catalogue.
II COLOQUIO
INTERNACIONAL DEL
PROGRAMA DE
ESTUDIOS SOBRE
LATINOS EN LOS
ESTADOS UNIDOS
OCTOBER 15-17, CASA DE
LAS
AMÉRICAS
Under the theme of “Latinos in the arts and letters,”, the
colloquium will examine interactions, conflicts and
complexities of the artistic and cultural production of this
part of the population within US mainstream and their
relationship with the production of their nations of origin,
from a multilateral view, contrary to discriminatory,
derogatory and prejudiced discourses that insist on seeing
this population as threatening.
The themes to be discussed include
1. Historiographical models of the music produced by Latinos in the United States;
2. The perspectives of theater made by and for Latinos;
3. Visual arts and the Latino character, so far and yet so close;
4. Literature, creation and the publishing market;
5. Cultural interactions: Where do we come from? Where are we headed?
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 43
FOR KIDS
TEATRO DE
TÍTERES EL ARCA
Fri, Sat and Sun, 3pm,
through Octobre 20
The El Arca Puppet Theater continues
this month with Sueño de una noche de
verano based on William Shakespeare's
immortal A Midsummer Night's Dream
with music by Mendelssohn.
October 22, 10am
The El Arca Puppet Theater will be celebrating its third anniversary with Los tres pichones, based on a short story by
Cuban author Onelio Jorge Cardoso, with the performance of actress Miriam Sánchez. The celebration also includes
the showing of the documentary Tía Tata, un recuerdo que TeVe.
Festival de Teatro de La Habana
The Theater Festival, which is held in Havana every year around this time, also has several performances in store for
the small fries:
October 25: Sueño de una noche de verano, El Arca (Havana).
October 26 & 27: Los pícaros burlados, Los Zahories (Las Tunas).
October 28 & 29: El ruiseñor, Retablos (Cienfuegos).
October 30 & 31: El circo de la ilusión, Paciencia de Guayaba (Colombia).
EN BUENA CONPANÍA
THROUGHOUT OCTOBER, SAT & SUN, 4PM & 7PM
CARPA TROMPOLOCO
The summer's over but the magical and adventurous world
of the circus goes on. Cuba's prime circus venue, Carpa
Trompoloco, located at 5ta Avenida y calle 112 in Miramar,
Playa, will continue to present shows throughout the
month, Saturdays and Sundays, at 4pm & 7pm. “En Buena
Conpanía” (In Good Company) is the name of the new show
featuring, among other acts, tightrope walkers, acrobats,
clowns, gymnasts, trained animals, and the fascinating
flying trapeze, which was awarded the Grand Prix during
the past CIRCUBA 2013 Festival. And if you happen to be in
the town of Encrucijada in Villa Clara province, don't miss
Aventura Azul, the shsow that the National Circus will be
presenting from October 2-6. But wherever you are, the
circus
Carpa Trompoloco: 5ta. Avenida y 112, Miramar, Playa,
Tel: 206 5609
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 44
OTHER EVENTS AROUND CUBA
XIX Fiesta de la Cultura
Iberoamericana
October 23-30
City of Holguín
Three hundred delegates from 20 countries have
confirmed their attendance at the 19th the IberoAmerican Culture Festival. Sponsored by Casa de
Iberoamérica, the festival commemorates the meeting
between the European and the American cultures 521
years ago, with the arrival of Columbus in this part of the
world, although other assure that the Vikings has actually
been here first.
This year's festival, which will focus on the processes of
integration and emancipation in Latin America, holds
several sub-events such as the Latin American Arts Salon,
the Iberoarte craft--65 craftsmen and women from
different countries have confirmed their participation-the Ibero-American audiovisual showings, and the
innumerable dance and music performances in squares
and parks.
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
The Day of the Seed is a traditional event that recreates
the cultural roots of the Ibero-American world. The
Tambor Fiesta, which focuses on the percussion
instrument, also known as conga, essential in Cuban
popular music, aims to highlight the significant
contributions of African cultures to Latin America. Other
events include the Guitar and the Solidarity Fiestas. The
latter will host a cultural dialogue between the
communities of Spanish-born and Spanish descendants,
the neighborhoods and visitors. Meanwhile, the New
Peoples Fiesta celebrates the identity built from the
confluence of diverse American ethnicities and cultures. A
new event this year will be the first world meeting of folk
dances by couples.
The 8th Ibero-American Congress of Thought will discuss
topics related to heritage and cultural identity; processes
of change; social and political movements; regional
culture and integration; the Cuban social project and
national identity; history; important figures; identity and
integration processes; ethnicity, gender and development
projects; environment, bioethics and law; private and
institutional collectors; art practices, biennials and public
spaces; and migration, citizenship and civil society.
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 45
Caldosa & rum
for the fiesta del
barrio
by Victoria Alcalá
“Yanisleidys! Do you have any cumin?” “Are you ever going
to learn to buy cassava?” “Caballero, if you drink all the
rum now, all you'll have for the party will be water!”
From street to street, neighborhood to neighborhood
throughout Cuba, scenes like these are repeated over and
over every September 27th, on the eve of the anniversary
of the creation of the Comités de Defensa de la Revolución
(Committees for the Defense of the Revolution), better
known by their acronym CDR. The organization was
formed on September 28, 1960, when, in the midst of one
of Fidel Castro's impassioned speeches, several
explosions were heard. The reply of the multitude was to
give cheers to the Revolution and Fidel immediately
proposed the creation of a neighborhood organization
that would defend the young revolutionary process
against internal and external dangers through the
surveillance by the people of enemy activity.
Over time, surveillance would be accompanied by other
activities, such as polio vaccination campaigns, blood
donations, collecting waste material for recycling, etc. but
the tradition of the party remained unchanged.
Days before the “fiesta del Comité” a group of enthusiastic
members raise money with the help of the neighbors and
divide the tasks among them. One buys rum, another is
responsible for the lights, others decorate the block…
However, the undisputed star of the show is the person
responsible for preparing the “caldosa.”
Caldosa is an enigmatic stew, a poor relative of the ajiaco, a
traditional Cuban stew that contains large chunks of pork,
beef, chorizo and a medley of vegetables. For the caldosa,
alas, there is no fixed recipe. It takes whatever you can find
in the market: potatoes, cassava, sweet potatoes,
plaintain, onion, garlic, pepper, oregano, cumin, salt,
sausage of any kind, chicken giblets, mutton or pork ribs
or pork head, water and its ready to be cooked. Everybody
on the block contributes something from their fridge or
pantry to the caldosa of unpredictable flavor. This jumble
of meat and vegetables is then cooked in a huge pot
outside right on the street. Placing the pot, filling it with
the uncooked food, lighting the fire, and taking turns
stirring the stew is a ritual in itself. When it's done, it's time
to start the party.
This is the fiesta del barrio. Neighbors who don't even
glance at each other throughout the year may get deep in
conversation with intimate details. A family who has
recently moved has the chance of getting to know the
people on their block. Others catch up on some juicy
story. Meanwhile, the little ones run around, happy to be
able to stay up late, and the teenagers play their favorite
music that ranges from salsa to timba to reggaeton. While
fruit punch is the usual beverage for kids and senior
citizens, the omnipresent rum is coveted by the men--and
some women.
The party may go on past midnight at least for a couple of
hours more. Some people leave early, some at the stroke of
midnight, while diehards may probably stay up until the
break of day--as long as there's rum to keep them
company!
Continue to read full article + slideshow
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 46
October 20th, 1868: The birth of the
Cuban National Anthem, La Bayamesa
National Cuban Culture Day is celebrated on October 20, which is considered the
day that marks the birth of a rebellious nation and its identity. This day
commemorates one of the most important events in Cuba's history. The Cuban
National Anthem, La Bayamesa, was heard for the first time when rebel troops led
by Carlos Manuel de Céspedes freed the city of Bayamo in 1868.
The author of the ardent verses was the lawyer Pedro “Perucho” Figueredo, who
had been asked the year before to write “our own Marseillaise.” The next day he
composed the melody of the future anthem and a month later it was played in the
principal church in Bayamo. However, the hymn would have to wait 14 months for
the lyrics, which Perucho wrote after the battle of October 20, 1868, right on the
saddle of his horse. Two years later, he was captured by the Spaniards and just
before he was executed, he shouted the line from his anthem: Morir por la Patria es
vivir – “To die for the Motherland is to live.”
From October 20, 1868 on, the Bayamo Anthem presided every ceremony and
action of the Cuban independence movement. Over time, it transcended as a
symbol of the nation and faithful expression of the character and identity of the
Cuban people. This is why on August 22, 1980, the Council of Ministers agreed to
establish October 20 as Cuban Culture Day in acknowledgement of the day that
the people sang Cuba's National Anthem, expressing the spirit of independence in
its inflamed music and patriotic poetry.
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 47
Calle 24 @ Calle 19
El Vedado
830-5205
Cuba (Libro) Va!
By Conner Gorry
Just a month in and Cuba Libro – 'the islands first Englishlanguage bookstore – is proving a wild ride. Quite like
Cuba itself, it's chaotic and fun; full of daily randomness
like blackouts, fumigation, and marriage proposals;
receiving limitless solidarity from family, friends, and
strangers; and is a precipitous, perennial learning curve –
Cubans are crazy for cappuccino for instance and there's
huge demand for music magazines.
A day doesn't go by without interesting people dropping
in, from DJs and doctors to ambassadors and world
travelers, and novel experiences are always unfolding or
just about to. Already we've scheduled art shows through
January with magnificent exhibits by local artists of
drawings, graffiti, even puppets and tapestries, plus the
water bottle refill service is catching on.
Cuba Libro has also sparked a fury of donations from
people living here and others who wished they did; we're
happy to report that our public has very good taste. The
most recent acquisitions include George Eliot and James
Joyce, Steinbeck, Stendhal and yes, Our Man in Havana.
And just the other day, as we sipped our espressos in the
garden with a Cuban philosophy professor, something
extraordinary (and historic) happened: a gentleman rode
up to our door on a bicycle, extracted a padded manila
envelope from his satchel and delivered our first donation
sent through the US, and received by the Cuban postal
services. It was postmarked August 13, from Northfield,
Illinois, and was placed in our hands on August 27th. Big
ups to author Libby Fischer Hellmann for going to the
effort and expense (sending this 1-pound book cost $16) to
support Cuba Libro. Next time you're in Havana, the coffee
is on us!
cubaABSOLUTELY.COM
Yesterday, as we told some friends about all the exciting
things afoot, they said, 'Cuba Libro has some kind of angel
watching over it.' Actually, we have three and everyone
who has come in so far has felt them in one way or another.
Angels, magic, mana, aloha – whatever you call it, we've
got it, not unlike Cuba itself.
Follow Cuba Libro developments at our FaceBook page
(https://www.facebook.com/cubalibrohav) and on Twitter
@cubalibrohavana.
Cuba Libro: Havana's 1st English-Language Bookstore & Café
Located on a terminally shady corner in the desirable Vedado
district, this 'café literario' is bringing the
bookstore/coffeehouse concept to the island. All books and
magazines pass through the 'Conner filter' (if you find a
Harlequin Romance on the shelves, you get a free espresso!): I
guarantee if you're in need of quality reading material or
conversation with interesting, creative Cubans, you'll find it
here.
In addition to featuring monthly shows by talented local artists –
August showcases over a dozen captivating images by
photographer Alain Gutiérrez – Cuba Libro offers many services
travelers are after: water bottle refills; postcards, stamps, and
mailing; a cultural calendar (so you won't miss that hot concert
or polemic play); and expert travel tips. This is an ethicallyresponsible business that offers a lending library for those who
can't afford books, a collective employment model where the
entire team benefits, and an environmentally-friendly approach.
Like Cuba itself, Cuba Libro strives for equity and a healthy,
culturally-rich atmosphere.
This is also a regguetón free zone – we listen to real music at
Cuba Libro! Come early to snag a coveted hammock or hanging
chair in the garden.
Open Monday-Saturday, 10am-8pm.
Continue to read full article + slideshow
With a Passion for Cuba
PAGE 48
El Atelier
CA
5
CA TOP PICK
Style of food
Cost
Fussion
Expensive
Type of place
Paladar (private)
Food
Ambience
Service
Value
Best for Interesting menu, beautiful building with great décor
and good service.
Worst for Getting a reservation
in busy periods.
Calle 5 entre Paseo y 2, Vedado
+53 (07) 836-2025
[email protected]
Open noon-midnight daily
Cuba Absolutely Review:
September 2013
Atelier keeps getting better, recent renovations have improved the
place while the food remains excellent. Atelier is run by Niuris
Higueras who has a passion for creating food. She is the driving
force--modest, capable, and warm. She defines the style of the
food as signature cuisine, an experimental culinary workshop. The
food changes every day, every week, hence those handwritten
menu. Eclectic, everything from Falafels, Pato confitado [candied
duck], Lomito de res con camarones y Espuma de apio al olivo
[sirloin steak with shrimp and celery mousse], Conejo al vino [rabbit in wine] to cerdo asado (roast pork). Desserts are standard (flan,
tarts, ice cream) but good.
The large main room is decorated with sparse modern lines, inside
a typically idiosyncratic Vedado mansion. Two balconies have
boundless cushions for the outdoor lounge. An antique hob outside, old sewing and adding machines inside make the place retro yet
not old.
Le Chansonnier
Best places to eat in Havana
El Atelier
CA
5
Bikos
CA
5
Café Laurent
CA
5
Calle 10
CA
5
Contemporary fusion
Spanish/Mediterranean
Spanish/Mediterranean
International
Calle 5 entre Paseo y 2,
Vedado
Calle 19, No 1010, esquina
a 12, Vedado
Calle M No. 257, entre 19 y
21, Vedado
Calle 10 No. 314 entre 3ra
y 5ta, Miramar
(07) 836-7075
(07) 836-3603
(07) 831-2090/832-6890
(07) 205-3970
El
Chanchullero
Le
Chansonnier
La Casa
CA
5
Casa Miglis
CA
5
CA
5+
CA
5+
Contemporary fusion
Swedish
Calle 30 No. 865 entre 26
y 41, Nuevo Vedado
Lealtad 120 entre Ánimas
y Lagunas. Centro
Havana
Spanish/Mediterranean
Contemporary fusion
Teniente Rey 457ª bajo
entre Bernaza y El Cristo
Calle J No. 257 entre
Línea y 15, Vedado
(07) 864-1486
(07) 872-8227
(07) 832-1576
CA 5+
Corte del
Principe (Sergio’s)
Il Divino
Calle 26, S/N, between 11
and 13, Vedado.
Italian
Calle Raquel, No. 50 e/
Esperanza y Lindero.
(07) 832-2355
(05) 255-9091
(07) 881-7000
El Cocinero
CA
5+
International
La Fontana
CA
5+
9na esq. 74, Playa
La Guarida
CA
5+
International
Contemporary fusion
Calle 46 No. 305 esquina
a 3ra, Miramar
Concordia 418 entre
Gervasio y Escobar
(07) 202-8337
(07) 866-9047
CA
5+
International
Doña
Eutimia
CA
5+
Cuban/Creole
Reparto Castillo de Averhoff,
Mantilla, Arroyo Naranjo
Callejón del Chorro No.
60C. Plaza de la Catedral
(07) 643-7734
(05) 281-5883
Ivan Chef
Justo
CA
5+
Rio Mar
CA
5
International
Spanish/Mediterranean
Aguacate #9, Esq. Chacun,
Havana Vieja
3A y Final # 11, La Puntilla,
Miramar, Havana, Cuba
(07) 863-9697
San Cristóbal CA
5
Santy
CA
5+
Starbien
CA
5
El Templete
CA
5
Cuban/Creole
Sushi/Oriental
Spanish/Mediterranean
Spanish/Mediterranean
Calle San Rafael No 469
entre Lealtad y Campanario
Calle 240A No 3023 y
3raC, Jaimanitas
Calle 29 # 205 entre B y
C. Vedado.
Avenida del Puerto No. 12
esquina a Narciso López
(05) 286-7039
(07) 830-0711
(07) 866-8807
(07) 860-9109
.COM
With a passion for Cuba
El Chanchullero
CA
5+
CA TOP PICK
Style of food
Cost
VIDEO
Spanish/Mediterranean
Cheap
Type of place
Paladar (private)
Food
Ambience
Service
Value
Best for Amazing value and quality food in
an authentic hole in the wall place with a
good vibe.
Worst for Can get hot during summer.
Teniente Rey 457ª bajos entre Bernaza y El Cristo.
Havana Vieja
+53 7 872 8227
Le Chansonnier
CA
5+
CA TOP PICK
Style of food
Cost
Contemporary fusion
Expensive
Type of place
Paladar (private)
Food
Ambience
Service
Value
Best for The IT Place, the IN Place. Stylish,
elegant and sophisticated décor.
Worst for Getting a reservation in busy
periods. Getting taken over by American
tour groups.
Calle J No. 257 entre Línea y 15, Vedado
(7) 832 1576
El Cocinero
cabezal
CA
5+
CA TOP PICK
Style of food
Cost
International
Moderate
Type of place
Paladar (private)
Food
Ambience
Service
Value
Best for Trendy, funky and buzzing atmosphere. Great post modern location. Quality
food.
Worst for When it rains you get wet on the
main deck.
Calle 26, S/N, between 11 and 13, Vedado.
(7) 832 2355
Corte del Príncipe
CA
5+
CA TOP PICK
Style of food
Cost
Italian
Expensive
Type of place
Paladar (private)
Food
Ambience
Service
Value
Best for Spectacular homemade Italian
pastas. Cozy atmosphere, excellent service.
Worst for Getting a reservation. Not cheap
(although its worth it)
9na esq. 74, Playa
5-255-9091
.COM
With a passion for Cuba
Miramar Cafe
Best Bars & Clubs in Havana
Barbaram
Pepito’s Bar
CA
4+
Live music – trova
Calle 26 e/ Avenida
Zoologigo & Calle 47,
Nuevo Vedado.
(07) 881-1808
Bohemio Bar
CA 5Bar – contemporary
Café Jazz
Miramar
Live music – contemporary fusion
Calle 21 No 1065 e/ 12 y
14, Vedado.
(07) 833-6918
Jazz Club
Espacios
CA 5Bar – contemporary
Factoria
Plaza Vieja
Calle 10, e/ 5ta y 31,
Miramar.
Bar – Traditional
Calle 13 e/ I y J, Vedado.
(07) 830-1354 / 832-9359
El Cocinero
CA 5+
Bar – contemporary
Calle 26, e/ 11 y 13,
Vedado.
La Floridita
CA 5
Bertolt
Brecht Café Teatro
Don Cangrejo
CA 5Club – contemporary
fusion
Avenida 1ra e/ Calles 16 &
18, Miramar.
(07) 204-3837
CA
5-
Bar – Traditional
Obispo No. 557 esq Ave.
de Bélgica (Monserrate),
Old Havana
(07) 867-1299 / 867-1300
La Fontana
bar
CA
5
El Gato
Tuerto
Bar – contemporary
Bar – contemporary
Calle 46 No. 305, esquina
3ra, Miramar
(07) 202-8337
Calle O, e/ 17 y 19,
Vedado
(07) 833-2224
CA 4+ Privé Lounge
Nacional
Hotel - La Terraza
Jazz Club / Bar
CA
5
Salon Rosado CA
de la Tropical
Calle 88A No. 306 e/ 3ra
y 3ra A, Miramar, Playa.
(07) 209-2719
Concert venue
CA 5Live music – contemporary
Sloppy Joe’s
Bar
Teatro Bellas
Artes
Avenida 9na #12015, e/
Calles 120 y 130, Miramar.
Ánimas, esq. Zulueta,
Habana Vieja.
(07) 866 7157
Bar – Traditional
Calle O, esquina 21,
Vedado.
(07) 836-3564 / 873-3564
El Sauce
(07) 204-6428
CA
CA
Bar – Traditional
.COM
4+
4+
Cine Teatro Miramar.
Calle 5ta Esquina a 94,
Miramar.
CA
4+
San Ignacio, esquina
Muralla, Plaza Vieja, Old
Havana.
(07) 866-4453
4+
Melem Bar
CA 5Bar – contemporary
1ra, e/ 58 y 60, Miramar.
4+
CA
Sangri-La
CA 5
Bar – contemporary
Avenida 21, e/ Calle 36 y
42, Miramar.
(0) 5-264-8343
Ave. 41 esq. 46, Nicanor
del Campo, Marianao.
(07) 203-5322
5-
Live music – contemporary
Calle Trocadero e/
Agramonte & Avenida de
las Misiones. Old Havana
With a passion for Cuba
CA
La Zorra y el
Cuervo
Jazz Club
Calle 23, e/ N y O
(07) 833-2402
CA
5
El Cocinero
CA
5+
CA TOP PICK
Style
VIDEO
Bar / Contemporary
Ambience
Popularity
Entertainment
Service & drinks
Best for Fabulous setting, great service,
cool vibe and tasty food. What’s not to like.
Worst for Climbing up the three flights of
winding stairs.
Calle 26, S/N, between 11 and 13, Vedado.
(07) 832-2355
Sloppy Joe’s Bar
CA
4+
CA TOP PICK
Style
Bar / Traditional
Ambience
Popularity
Entertainment
Service & drinks
Best for Immense original bar lovingly
restored. Good service, History.
Worst for Not quite grimy. Too clean.
Ánimas, esq. Zulueta La Habana Vieja,
(07) 866-7157
cabezal
Privé Lounge
CA
5
CA TOP PICK
Style
Jazz Club / Bar
Ambience
Popularity
Entertainment
Service & drinks
Best for Combines comfort, quality music,
and a chill atmosphere brilliantly.
Worst for It can get loud with chattering
youth and there are some seats with
blocked sight lines.
Calle 88A No. 306 e/ 3ra y 3ra A, Miramar, Playa.
(07) 209-2719
Sangri-La
CA
5
CA TOP PICK
Style
Bar – contemporary
Ambience
Popularity
Entertainment
Service & drinks
Best for Hanging out with the cool kids on
the Havana Farandula.
Worst for Gets extremely packed on a busy
night. When is too cool not fun anymore?
Avenida 21, Entre Calle 36 y 42, Miramar. (Corner
of 42)
(07) 209-2719
.COM
With a passion for Cuba
Museo Nacional de Artes Decorativas
Havana’s best Museums
Arte Corte
(Papito’s)
Cámara Oscura
Hairdressing salon and
“interactive museum”
Aguiar 10 entre Peña
Pobre y Monserrate,
Habana Vieja
360-degree panoramic
view of Old Havana
Brasil (Teniente Rey),
esquina a Mercaderes,
Habana Vieja
Casa Oswaldo
Guayasamín
Castillo de los Tres
Reyes del Morro
Work by Oswaldo
Guayasamín
Symbol of Havana and
most visited place
Obrapía 111, entre Oficios
y Mercaderes, Habana
Vieja
North-eastern side of the
harbor
Castillo de la
Real Fuerza
Depósito del
Automóvil
Fundación
Havana Club
Maqueta de
La Habana
Fortress
49 restored vehicles
from 1905 to 1989
Stages of traditional
rum production
Scale model of Havana
(third largest in world)
Oficios 13 esquina a
Callejón de Jústiz,
Habana Vieja
Avenida del Puerto 262,
esq. a Sol, Habana Vieja
28 #113 entre 1ra y 3ra,
Miramar
Museo de la Ciudad
Museo del
Chocolate
Museo de la Farmacia Habanera La
Reunión
O'Reilly #1, Plaza de
Armas, Habana Vieja
Museo Armería
9 de Abril
Firearms and bladed
weapons C18th to 20th
Mercaderes 157, e/ Obrapía y Lamparilla, Habana
Vieja
Palacio de los Capitanes Generales
Cuba (Tacón) e/ Obispo
y O’Reilly, Habana Vieja
Museo Napoleónico
Museo del
Ferrocarril
Housed in the former
Cristina railway station
Estación Cristina, s/n, esq.
a Arroyo, Habana Vieja
Finest collection of
Napoleonic and French
Revolutionary memorabilia outside France
San Miguel #1159, e/
Ronda y Masón, Vedado
Museo Nacional
de la Danza
Museo Nacional de
Artes Decorativas
Objects from Alicia
Alonso’s collection
Aristocratic wealth,
taste and passion
Línea y G (Avenida de los
Presidentes), Vedado
17 #502 esq. a E, Vedado
.COM
Watch chocolates
being made
Mercaderes esq. a Amargura, Habana Vieja
Historic, restored
pharmacy
Brasil (Teniente Rey) esq.
a Compostela, Habana
Vieja
Museo de la
Revolución
Museo Nacional
de Bellas Artes
Revolutionary history
World-class cultural
centre
Refugio 1 e/ Monserrate y
Zulueta, Habana Vieja
Trocadero e/ Zulueta y
Monserrate, Habana
Vieja
Planetario
El Templete
Interactive cultural
center
Commemorates the
first mass held
Mercaderes 311 e/ Brasil
(Teniente Rey) y Muralla.
Plaza Vieja, Habana Vieja
Baratillo, esq. a O’Reilly,
Habana Vieja
With a passion for Cuba

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