Chicago Symphony Orchestra Imports Cuban Goods

The other night, I was at the Orchestra Hall of  Symphony Center,  waiting for the start of a Chicago Symphony Orchestra concert. While waiting,  I was admiring all the beauty that this place beholds. I felt grateful for living in a city that has such an amazing space for music and such a magnificent orchestra. Did you know that the Orchestra Hall at Symphony Center was designated a National Historic Landmark and that Chicago Symphony Orchestra is one of the five American orchestras commonly referred to as the “Big Five“? The CSO does not only hold classical music concerts, but also world music events. This year, I had the pleasure of  seeing the Sowetto Gospel Choir from South Africa and Flamenco guitar virtuoso Paco de Lucia from Spain there.

This Friday, it is Cuba’s turn. Vibraphonist Stefon Harris, saxophonist David Sánchez and trumpeter Nicholas Payton cross the 90-mile divide between Cuba and the United States in a session that blends traditional Cuban rhythms with jazz. Not only do these three virtuosos combine to generate a unique musical force, they create a true Cuban-American musical collaboration that defies political borders. Kicking off this double bill is Grammy® Award-winning Cuban pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba with an extraordinary solo set.  You can buy tickets for this show here. And if you want to see a panoramic view of the Orchestra Hall, just double click the picture below. You will feel as if you are sitting there!

 

Come to our Rumba Reggae Party tomorrow and help the Afro-Peruvian children of El Guayabo

Underground Wonderbar
710 N. Clark St., Chicago, Illinois 60654

Saturday November 17
8pm-10:30pm

Chicago Urbanite, Chicago’s top blog promoting world music and dance, invites you to come celebrate and be grateful with us! Live music by NuBambu, the hottest rumba-reggae band in Chicago. Cover includes access to all of Underground Wonderbar stages.

Also, we will be filming footage for Nu Bambu’s Music Video and we want YOU to be in it. Come out with your dance moves and support the band’s video. It will be FUN!

DJ Rebolu will throwing down world music

Free giveaways.

50% OFF beautiful Jewelry by Monsieur Pamplemousse. We will also raffle a gorgeous necklace valued at $162!

YOUR ATTENDANCE WILL MAKE CHILDREN FROM PERU HAPPY THESE HOLIDAYS!

We will be collecting donations for Christmas events that will benefit children from Lima and the Afro-Peruvian community of El Guayabo, Chincha (see pics here). Here is a video of these beautiful children dancing and playing their own music:

Cover: $10

50% off to Chicago Urbanite followers who RSVP here (click on “Join”) before 3pm on Nov 17

(Must follow this blog/ like our Facebook page and RSVP to get discount)

Cover includes access to all of Underground Wonderbar stages. After our show, stay for Lonie Walker & her Big Bad Ass Company Band show. Also DJ MWELWA , FLX, and Kino will have their Global Late Nite from 11pm to 5am

Be part of an Afro-Peruvian percussion and dance flash mob in Chicago

Wanna learn a little of Afro-Peruvian dance? Then come to a FREE mini dance flash mob rehearsal tomorrow Sunday October 28 at Africaribe Cultural Center (2547 W Division) between 11am and 1pm. Easy steps and tons of fun. We will do the dance flash mob at a place nearby immediately after rehearsal.
If you can, bring the following:
Casual, comfortable, street clothes (bright-colored tops are preferred)
An empty glass bottle and a metal spoon to be used as musical instrument.

Hope to see you there!

World Music Fest and People of Chicago Videos

If you still have not gone to any of the free Chicago World Music Fest concerts, you should definitely do it soon.  I went to see Dehli 2 Dublin, this Canadian band that mixes  Bhangra and Celtic music,  and it was quite energizing and unique. I mean, where have you seen an Asian dude wearing a kilt and playing the sitar? Check some of their performance here:

Tonight I am checking out Slavic Soul Party, a BalkanSoulGypsyFunk Brass band from New York. and tomorrow I will see Magic Carpet, a local band that blends Jazz, Reggae, and Funk with the traditions of Africa, the Middle East, and India.  I saw these cats at SummerDance Fest a few weeks ago and I can tell you that you run the risk to get hypnotized with their music:

Note aside: I want to pay homage to the people of Chicago, who can be fearless and strong supporters of music and dance. I went to Millennium Park for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra‘s Carmina Burana concert last Friday, thinking that very few people would attend due to the rainy weather. To my surprise, the place was packed! We stood in the rain for the duration of what was an epic concert.

In addition to overcome uncomfortable weather conditions, some of us are fearless enough to express our passion for dance and music in unorthodox ways. I saw some of that happening at Chicago SummerDance Fest during Magic Carpet’s concert. This  free outdoors festival allows Chicagoans from all backgrounds and ages to get together and dance. Gotta love the power of music and dance to break any kind of barriers!

So in case you fancy to join me, these are my recommendations for tonight and tomorrow (I also accept suggestions, so post a comment with your favorite bands or pics/videos of the festival):

Tonight:  Slavic Soul Party,

Tomorrow: Magic Carpet and Spain’s flamenco/latin/rock band Canteca de Macao

Click here for information about location and times of concerts. Hope to see you there!

JUNE 2ND: GLOBAL VILLAGE PARTY! TRIBUTE TO INTI RAYMI DAY/SOLSTICE

This Global Village Party will be an event you don’t want to miss!

Come experience the cultural diversity that exists around the world! Learn new traditions and meet new people.

In the month of June, we will pay tribute to the second biggest festivity in South America after Rio’s carnival: The Inti Raymi (Festival of the Sun). This was the biggest religious festivity of the Inca Empire in honor of the god Inti. It is still celebrated annually in the Andes, attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors from all over the world.

FEATURING:

9pm: Cuatro Suyos Restaurant will provide Peruvian food .

10pm :Carmen Edith Freeze, Director of Pachacamak Folk Dance Group, will teach a class of Andean/Ecuadorian Folk Dance followed by Pachacamak dancers performance.

10:30pm Chicago Urban Fusion band Nu Bambu will play their danceable Rumba-Reggae music. The band members are from France, Venezuela, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, the United States, and Peru. Their music is multilingual, street-smart and cutting-edge lyrics with a twist that fuse together different styles.

BUT wait…there’s MORE! Get ready for an EPIC DANCE PARTY that will be held later in the evening!

DRINKS SPECIALS:
$4 Jack and Coke, $4 Smirnoff and Sodas, $5 Absolut Cocktails
$5 Jager Bomb, $3 Beer Specials, $5 Crown Royal and Coke
Media Coverage by One Bedroom Productions.

WHEN: Saturday June 2nd 9pm-LATE
WHERE: SILVIE’S LOUNGE (1902 W. Irving Park Rd, Chicago, IL 60613)

COVER (cash only): $7 (students with ID:$5)

So come join us on this night for…
• Good dance and music!
• Cultural awareness!
• Free food!
• And most importantly a RAGING night!!

TONIGHT: CELEBRATE CINCO DE MAYO WITH NUBAMBU AT THE ABBEY PUB

ImageLooking for a place to dance to original and contagious music? Then come see us perform tonight at The Abbey Pub (3420 W Grace Chicago). NUBAMBU is a Chicago Urban Fusion band whose sounds are as diverse as its cross-cultural musicians. We will get you to dance with our unique and highly contagious danceable Latin-Reggae rhythms. Our influences range from all different corners of the world and blend together in an original Chicago style urban fusion sound. The band members are from France, Venezuela, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, the United States, and Peru. Our music is multilingual, street-smart, and has cutting-edge lyrics with a twist that fuse together different styles. Doors open at 8pm ad shows starts at 11pm. $7 in advance and $10 at the door. Buy your tickets here. Click here for more information about the band and the other bands playing at this event.

You are invited to my Birthday Party tomorrow night!

Hello!

You are invited to celebrate one more year of me being alive 🙂

We will have the band I sing with, Nu Bambu, Chicago’s hottest urban fusion band (latin/reggae), performing that evening.

DJ Newlife from Foreign Exchange (FEx Events) will be spinning the best of classic and electronic world music!

DRINK SPECIAL: $4 ALL WELL DRINKS FROM 10 TO 11PM

DATE AND TIME: Saturday February 25 10pm-2am

LOCATION: BETWEEN, Peruvian Cafe and Lounge. 1324 N. Milwaukee Ave Chicago (Wicker Park)

See map here

Kitchen will be open all night
NO COVER
You may RSVP on Facebook
Hope to see you there!

NEW LOCATION for Tomorrow’s Afro-Peruvian Music, Dance and Cajon Workshops

 We have a NEW location for tomorrow’s workshops. It is located 10 block aways from the previous location. Here is the new address:
LOCATION
BA Studio

2846 W North Ave, 2nd Floor, Chicago IL 60647
(Meet at side entrance on FRANCISCO AVE)

See map here

3:00 -5:00 PM

COST
$20 per workshop ($25 without RSVP)
Please RSVP via Facebook as attending
Or via chicagourbanite@hotmail.com (Subject: “Workshop”)
=======GET $10 OFF IF YOU TAKE BOTH WORKSHOPS========

PLEASE:
-ARRIVE 15 MINUTES EARLY

 Everyone has to get here early because it’s a locked building so I have to let you in when you get here. We will start on time! 🙂
-Wear work out clothes
-If possible, don’t wear shoes in studio unless they are indoor shoes

QUESTIONS? CALL 630.207.3679

AFRO-PERUVIAN DANCE WORKSHOP
Feb 25th  2012
3pm -4pm
Cost:  $20
Please RSVP via Facebook as attending
Or via chicagourbanite@hotmail.com (Subject: “Workshop”)
Join Ruben Pachas for a hands-on workshop on the diversity of Afro-Peruvian folk dance. He will focus  on the Festejo, a music and dance form developed in the plantation fields during the 18th century. The word Festejo, comes from the Spanish word festejar (to celebrate) .  True to its name, the music and dance of the Afro-Peruvian genre is joyous and vibrant but its traditional lyrics usually narrate the hardships of enslaved life. Participation will be encouraged. The class will last about one  hour and you will learn other Afro-Peruvian dances such as Zamacueca, Lando, Marinera & Vals.
AFRO-PERUVIAN CAJON WORKSHOP
Feb 25th  2012
4pm-5pm
Cost:  $20
Please RSVP via Facebook as attending
Or via chicagourbanite@hotmail.com (Subject: “Workshop”)
Join us for another special workshop with Ruben Pachas and discover the Cajon (Box) drum. This class is an introduction to the Cajon drum & Afro-Peruvian rhythms – Festejo, Zamacueca, Lando, Marinera & Vals.
Students will learn how to play basic patterns and explore different rhythms and stroke combinations on the cajon drum.
ALL LEVELS WELCOME
(Beginners always welcome/Advanced students learn new techniques and refresh your Cajon skills)
CAJON DRUMS
(We recommend that you bring your own)
The Cajon drum (pronounced cahon)is the Spanish word for “box”. The idea of using a simple wooden box as a drum is believed to have originated in colonial Peru where Africans displaced from their homeland substituted cod shipping crates for their native drums. As a result, Afro-Peruvian music is a unique blend of Spanish, Andean, and African traditions. Today, this versatile drum is steadily gaining popularity and recognition and can be heard in many different styles of music worldwide.
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR
RUBEN PACHAS has a solid background in artistic performance and as a dance teacher with a strong emphasis in field research and dance techniques. He is a graduate of  the prestigious Escuela Nacional Superior de Folklore  Jose Maria Arguedas and has an extensive experience as a professional Folk dance teacher. He is the Founder and Director of Peruvian Folk Dance Center, a Chicago dance group whose mission is to promote Peruvian culture through the teaching and performance of Peruvian folk dances.  
Here is video with a sample of Afro-Peruvian dances performed by the Afro-Peruvian musical ensemble Peru Negro:

You are invited to an Afro-Peruvian Music, Dance and Cajon Workshops

Chicago has given me the opportunity to experience art in so many different ways.  One of them has been becoming a member of  a Peruvian folk dance group led by a very talented artist and dance teacher. His name is Ruben Pachas. I first met him at a dance workshop and was very impressed by the quality of his work. His classes are fun, energetic, and enriching.  He knows how to deconstruct dance steps and makes them easy to learn. I want to share this experience with you and invite you to a couple of Afro Peruvian Music and Dance Workshops that he will be offering. These workshops cover the history of the arrival of African culture to Peru, musical samples of three traditional Afro-Peruvian instruments, sample popular dances, and full-class participation in a percussion session and dance routine. The goal is to actively involve the participants in learning Afro-Peruvian instruments, rhythms, and dances. Below are the details for this event:
LOCATION:
BA Studio

2846 W North Ave, 2nd Floor, Chicago IL 60647
(Meet at side entrance on FRANCISCO AVE)

See map here

COST
$20 per workshop ($25 without RSVP)
Please RSVP via Facebook as attending
Or via chicagourbanite@hotmail.com (Subject: “Workshop”)
=======GET $10 OFF IF YOU TAKE BOTH WORKSHOPS========

PLEASE:
-ARRIVE 15 MINUTES EARLY

 Everyone has to get here early because it’s a locked building so I have to let you in when you get here. We will start on time! 🙂
-Wear work out clothes
-If possible, don’t wear shoes in studio unless they are indoor shoes

AFRO-PERUVIAN DANCE WORKSHOP
Feb 25th  2012
3pm -4pm
Cost:  $20 ($25 without RSVP)
Please RSVP via Facebook as attending
Or via chicagourbanite@hotmail.com (Subject: “Workshop”)
Join Ruben Pachas for a hands-on workshop on the diversity of Afro-Peruvian folk dance. He will focus  on the Festejo, a music and dance form developed in the plantation fields during the 18th century. The word Festejo, comes from the Spanish word festejar (to celebrate) .  True to its name, the music and dance of the Afro-Peruvian genre is joyous and vibrant but its traditional lyrics usually narrate the hardships of enslaved life. Participation will be encouraged. The class will last about one  hour and you will learn other Afro-Peruvian dances such as Zamacueca, Lando, Marinera & Vals.
AFRO-PERUVIAN CAJON WORKSHOP
Feb 25th  2012
4pm-5pm
Cost:  $20 ($25 without RSVP)
Please RSVP via Facebook as attending
Or via chicagourbanite@hotmail.com (Subject: “Workshop”)
Join us for another special workshop with Ruben Pachas and discover the Cajon (Box) drum. This class is an introduction to the Cajon drum & Afro-Peruvian rhythms – Festejo, Zamacueca, Lando, Marinera & Vals.
Students will learn how to play basic patterns and explore different rhythms and stroke combinations on the cajon drum.
ALL LEVELS WELCOME
(Beginners always welcome/Advanced students learn new techniques and refresh your Cajon skills)
CAJON DRUMS
(We recommend that you bring your own)
The Cajon drum (pronounced cahon)is the Spanish word for “box”. The idea of using a simple wooden box as a drum is believed to have originated in colonial Peru where Africans displaced from their homeland substituted cod shipping crates for their native drums. As a result, Afro-Peruvian music is a unique blend of Spanish, Andean, and African traditions. Today, this versatile drum is steadily gaining popularity and recognition and can be heard in many different styles of music worldwide.
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR
RUBEN PACHAS has a solid background in artistic performance and as a dance teacher with a strong emphasis in field research and dance techniques. He is a graduate of  the prestigious Escuela Nacional Superior de Folklore  Jose Maria Arguedas and has an extensive experience as a professional Folk dance teacher. He is the Founder and Director of Peruvian Folk Dance Center, a Chicago dance group whose mission is to promote Peruvian culture through the teaching and performance of Peruvian folk dances.  
Here is video with a sample of Afro-Peruvian dances performed by the Afro-Peruvian musical ensemble Peru Negro: