Cuba: The Boleros de Oro International Festival 2010

Organized by the Musicians Association of the Union of Cuban Writers and Artists [Unión de Escritores y Artistas de Cuba, UNEAC] and co-sponsored by the Ministry of Culture, the Cuban Institute of Music, and the Cuban Institute of Radio and Television, the XXIII Boleros de Oro International Festival began yesterday, June 24, 2010, and will end on June 27.

This international festival brings together composers, performers, researchers and all lovers of the bolero. This year’s edition is dedicated to Mexico and eminent Cuban singer Omara Portuondo, recognized as the Diva of the Buena Vista Social Club and the bride of Filin, for having made her unique mark in the interpretation of the bolero and its modalities. Other commemorations this year giving are the birthdates of Manuel Corona (1880), Rosendo Ruiz Suárez (1885), and Ernesto Lecuona (1895), illustrious composers who contributed immensely to the development of bolero. Events also include remembrance of musicians Miguelito Cuní, Tania Castellanos, Tito Gómez, Pedro Junco, Adolfo Guzmán 90 years.

During the festival, the public can enjoy interpretations of the best romantic songs of the Latin American canon performed by Cuban singers as well as guests from other countries. The main celebrations and performances are held in Havana venues, such as the Mella, America, and Karl Marx theaters and other nightlife recreation centers. Several provinces, such as Santiago de Cuba, Holguín, Camagüey, Ciego de Ávila (Morón), Sancti Spíritus, Villa Clara, and Cienfuegos, will also hold parallel events.

Besides the magnificent performances [which I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to experience first-hand], events include an exhibition of works by Cuban artists on theme of music, at the Servando Cabrera Moreno Gallery and the international Bolero Symposium, which will focus on topics like the bolero in the construction of new Latin American and Caribbean identities; the impact of bolero in record market strategies; conceptual and spatial representation of the bolero music show; and performative trends in bolero interpretation, among other fascinating themes pertaining to the past, present, and future of this musical genre. 

For full program, see

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