Havana’s 13th Festival of Contemporary Music


Composers and singers from seven countries in Asia, Europe, and Latin America have been flocking this week to Havana’s 13th Festival of Contemporary Music. The festival began on October 30 and will end on November 8. The organizing committee has confirmed the presence of musicians from Argentina, Denmark, Mexico, Spain, Germany, Japan, and of course, Cuba.

The opening gala was a concert in homage to the Cuban musician Leo Brouwer— who is considered to be among the five most important living composers and guitarists in the world— to celebrate his 70th birthday. Brouwer is well known for his contributions to Cuban cinema from its beginnings; he wrote the music for some of the best films produced in Cuba.  The ICAIC, the Cuban Institute of Cinematic Art and Industry, has also honored the composer this year [see previous post Cuban Musician Leo Brouwer awarded Cuba’s 2009 National Cinema Award].

This week, the festival audience has been offered three concerts a day including works by island artists like the late Harold Gramatges, Roberto Valera, and Carlos Fariñas, as well as new faces in the Cuban contemporary music scene. Featured artists have also included Argentine pianist Dora de Marinis and Danish accordionist Adam Orvad. The festival has also hosted auditions, conferences, and theoretical discussions about relevant ideas pertaining to global contemporary music.  

The Havana Festival of Contemporary Music began in 1984 and since then, has hosted prestigious artists from Cuba and abroad, such as  Luigi Nono (Italy), Sten Hanson (Sweden), Xavier Montsalvatge (Spain), and Krystof Penderecki (Poland).

For full article (in Spanish), see http://spanish.people.com.cn/92121/6791661.html  

For more information about Leo Brouwer, see http://www.cubaheadlines.com/2009/03/04/16101/leo_brouwer%E2%80%99s_mark_cuban_cinema.html

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