In spite of the tragedy and trauma in her life, Bejarano has managed to find joy and is inspired to continue performing by the warm reception she receives from audiences.
Reuters Jan 09, 2017 3:03 PM
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Auschwitz survivor and musician Esther Bejarano performs in Cuba Reuters
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Auschwitz survivor and Jewish musician Esther Bejarano fulfilled a lifelong dream as she performed in Havana over the weekend.
The 92-year-old celebrated her birthday in the Caribbean capital city, where she and the members of Microphone Mafia entertained tourists at the Palacio de la Rumba (Rumba Palace).
Made up of members of different nationalities, generations and beliefs, the band seeks to send a message of tolerance to audiences.
For the past decade, Trinidadian Oloye Esabenjo Efag Oriyomi Orisagbemi has brought the Obatala Festival to the people of Trinidad., and this year’s celebration took place on the 7th of January . As usual there was a street procession, a carrying of the symbol of Obatala through the streets of the Ita Osa to spread the blessings of Peace and Tranquility to One and ALL.
The procession is sometimes accompanied by a police detail , Orisa visitations and other energies of the ritual are part of the festival.
Obatala initiates, Pierre Verger Trinidad’s Obatala day is here again, and there are beautiful photos of the procession already. Scroll down for the best photos ! And from a Trinidad newspaper , an article about the spirit behind the festival “For the past decade, Trinidadian Oloye Esabenjo Efag Oriyomi Orisagbemi has brought the Obatala…
The first gem of this series is a group called Yoruba Andabo (Rough translation: Followers of the Yoruba Culture) who have been on the Cuban Music Scene for a while now and are important pioneers in popularizing Rumba rhythms. Rumba is an Afro-Cuban rhythm that’s been around for generations now was often considered a more traditional sound that the youth didn’t really interact with as much. Yoruba Andabo has changed that in Cuba, these days you can ask any 17 year-old if they have Yoruba Andabo on their mp3 and they’ll probably reply that they have every album. Don’t get me wrong they in no way altered the original rhythms to satisfy the younger crowds if anything I think it’s just the thriving energy and relevant lyrics that brought people of all ages to feel connected with their sound.
My favorite track right now is La Gozadera, which was the first piece my brother introduced me to. It honestly doesn’t matter where I am, what I’m doing or who I’m with, if you put on that track my heart automatically starts to follow the beating of the drums, the voices grip my guts, my hips are swaying and my body is taking shapes I never knew existed. You know how they say that real happiness comes after hard times, that’s exactly what this track feels like to me; the blazing sun after the storm. If you struggled in your life you’ll know exactly what I mean.
Be sure to search for more of their stuff online, it’s a little harder to encounter than most but well worth the effort.
Geovani del Pino Rodríguez, 74 años, La Habana, accidente cerebrovascular. Gran cultor de la rumba afrocubana. Cantante, percusionista, compositor y director del grupo Yoruba Andabo.
The Healing Power of San Lazaro
December 17th is the Feast of San Lazaro. This saint is associated with the Orisha Babalu Aye in the La Regla Lucumi (Santeria) tradition. Michael Atwood Mason on the Smithsonian.com blog writes of this king “in the African-inspired religious tradition known as Santería …, Babalú-Ayé is both feared and beloved. Thought to be responsible for bringing epidemics like smallpox, leprosy and AIDS, Babalú-Ayé also cures these diseases. Oricha elders tell of his exile from his homeland with the Lucumí because he spread smallpox among them…. They tell of his journey to the Arará, who were healed by him and ultimately made him their king.”
Babalu Aye is the God of sickness, of infectious disease, and consequently of healing. His name has been translated as the “king who hurts the world.” Babalu Aye is worshiped under many different names. His name is Sonponno among the Yoruba, and Sakpata or Sagbata among the Fon of West Africa. Some believe his name is so sacred it is not to be spoken.
Babalu Aye performs miracles and transformational healings. This video from Yoruba Andabo tells of this Orisha’s great power.
Someone has turned this Beethoven symphony into an extraordinary Cuban rumba
By Amy MacKenzie, 19th December 2016, 09:51
Never thought you’d find yourself dancing along to Beethoven? This performance will have you toe-tapping in no time.
If there ever was a truly extraordinary cover of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7, then this is it.
Award-winning composer, orchestrator and talented performer Joachim Horsley has stunned us with his sunny arrangement Beethoven in Havana. Composed for eight performers on three pianos, including a percussion accompaniment and some extended techniques, we would love to see this piece performed live.
Matanzas, Cuba, Dec 10 (Prensa Latina) The Rumba, declared by UNESCO as Immaterial World Heritage of the Humanity, will dedicate the celebration for the declaration on December 11th to historic leader of the Cuban Revolution Fidel Castro, said sources today.
During the inter-governmental committee held in Ethiopia, the Rumba, musical rhythm of deep African roots, joined the list of UNESCO Cultural Heritage.
Officials from the Heritage Council of Cuba dedicated this achievement to Fidel Castro for his crucial role for outlining the Cuban cultural policy since the first years of the Revolution, began on January 1st, 1959.
Diosdado Ramos, director of Los Muñequitos, one of the emblematic and oldest groups of Rumba in Matanzas, said ‘we will sing to our Commander and the name of Rumba will shine.’
The ceremony will be held at the Patio Colonial in this city, located 100 kilometers east from Havana, with the presence of groups that will perform during 5 hours on Sunday evening.
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Traveling Noire: Cuba Comes ‘Alive’ 3:31
When the United States and Cuba first announced plans to restore diplomatic relations two years ago, Kasara E. Davidson says she and her business partner “hit the ground running” and used their combined 20 years of experience with the island to start Diaspora Enterprise Solutions (DiasporaES).
“It was an opportunity for us to learn Cuba even more and an opportunity for us to share what we know about Cuba with others,” said Davidson, who is the company’s co-owner and managing director.
The East Coast based business creates professional, educational and cultural programs for individuals, groups and organizations in cities around the world.
Since its founding about a year and a half ago, DiasporaES has focused mainly on Cuba— successfully taking several groups to the island under several of 12 permitted categories that have made it easier for more Americans to travel there.
Three backup dancers pose for a photo pose for a shot on their break in Havana, Cuba. Mikhael Simmonds
With the d
#RumbaconAmor #SoydelaTierraBrava #YorubaAndabo