Monday, June 27, 2011

Calypso STARS Showcase - July 27, 2011

The Calypso Tents Music Series is an annual event presented by the Organization of Calypso Performing Artistes that takes place over five weekends in June and early July. This year, the popular music series celebrates 30 years of calypso “tents” in Toronto, where singers premiere their latest works which reflect life in the city’s diverse Caribbean community.
Calypso STARS Showcase highlights include a special appearance from England’s famed calypso master, recording artist, teacher and writer, Alexander D’Great. Known for his political and social commentary compositions, delivered with wit and style, D’Great is an energetic and inspirational performer who recently won the Association of British Calypsonians’ 2010 Calypso Monarch title.

The house band for the evening is award-winning arranger/producer Ossie Gurley & The Truth. Gurley is the man behind smash soca hits “Who Let The Dogs Out”, “Moving To The Left” and “Follow The Leader”. Rounding out the showcase is steelpan virtuoso Gareth Burgess, a gifted young player from Toronto’s phenomenal steelpan community.
Representing mas’ and moving among the audience are iconic carnival arts characters on stilts called Moko Jumbies from Swizzlestick Theatre (a West African tradition brought to the Canada via the Caribbean). Fancy Sailor and Fireman dancers from the Hummingbird Dance Company and Prime Dance, two historical costumes introduced to Trinidad carnival back in the 1880s, will also be on site to join in on the fun.

For additional information and complete event listings, visit

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Monday, June 20, 2011

Colombian Colours – II Diaspora Festival - Harbourfront Centre - July 15-17

Harbourfront Centre, along with its lead summer partner The Toronto Port Authority, and festival partners Pacific Rubiales, Scotiabank, AviancaTaca and Caracol T.V., are proud to present the return of Colombian Colours – II Diaspora Festival. From July 15 to 17, audiences from the GTA and beyond are invited to celebrate this vibrant culture with international and local performances in music, theatre, film, dance and more. This festival is co-produced by the Casa Cultural Colombiana and Tridha Arts Association.

International music artists featured throughout this three-day celebration include salsa violinist Alfredo De Fe, who is credited with making the violin an integral part of Latin music, Colombia’s first all-vocal group NVOZ, and the Diego Marulanda Quintet who combine native Colombian instruments like the yapurutus (Colombian flutes) and maguarés (Colombian drums) with double bass and guitar.

Live Music Schedule:

Alfredo De La Fe
Saturday, July 16, 9:30 p.m. (WestJet Stage)
Cuban-born violinist Alfredo De La Fe has toured the world more than 30 times and has been featured on more than 100 albums with Latin music legends Eddie Palmieri, Tito Puente, Celia Cruz, Jose Alberto El Canario, Cheo Feliciano, The Fania All Stars and Santana. He currently resides in New York and is considered to be one of the biggest stars in the salsa world.

Saturday, July 16, 7 p.m. & Sunday, July 17, 4 p.m. (WestJet Stage)
NVOZ is a remarkable five-member Colombian a capella band that draws on various styles of traditional Colombian music, such as cumbia, bullerengue, champeta, merengue and salsa to create a unique orchestra of vocal sounds.

Diego Marulanda Quintet
Sunday, July 17, 2 p.m. (WestJet Stage)
Diego Marulanda is a renowned dance, theatre, film and television composer with wide range of experience in contemporary and world music. The Diego Marulanda Quintet explores folkloric music from the Andean zone of Colombia and fuses it with contemporary and traditional instruments such as double bass and yapurutus, piano and cuatro, guitar and maguare. The members of the Diego Marulanda’s Quintet are among the top Latin-Canadian musicians in Toronto.

Folklore Urbano
Saturday, July 16, 6 p.m. (Redpath Stage)
Folklore Urbano are a powerhouse 14-member orchestra that fuses traditional Colombian rhythms with contemporary jazz harmonies.The group’s three highly-acclaimed CDs, Aviso, Baile/Dance and the latest, Corazón, are all driven by a rhythm section deeply grounded in traditional Colombian music.

Salsa!!: José Ortega and DJ Gury Gury
Saturday, July 16, 8 p.m. (Redpath Stage)
Salsa!! is a good-natured competition between two of the most well-known collectors of salsa music in Ontario. Jose Ortega, owner of Lula Lounge in Toronto and Guelph radio host DJ Gury Gury will have audiences dancing as they spin tunes from their unique music collections.

Funkété Late Night Party
Saturday July 16, 11 p.m. (Brigantine Room and Tent)
Funkété is a monthly party created by DJ eLman and Linterna of Dos Mundos Radio (CIUT). DJ Uproot Andy, considered to be one of the best DJs in New York, also makes an appearance as this trio mixes infectious Latin beats with dancehall, bassline, hip hop and electro.

Saturday, July 16, 3:30 p.m. (Redpath Stage)
KAFFE Rock are bassist Javier Gutierrez, guitarist Adrian Gonzalez, drummer Carlos Paez, singer Juan Diego Zapata and new lead guitarist Nick Houle. Formed in 2003, this London-based group have developed and integrated their Latin American sound with a mix of rock, ska, salsa and folk. Kaffe’s hope is to enlighten others about Colombian culture, introduce the world to their traditions and to dispel the negative stereotypes surrounding Latin America and her people.

Friday July 15, 7:30 p.m. (Redpath Stage)
Caché is one of the leading bands on the Latin music scene in Toronto. The band is made up of musicians with a variety of ethnic backgrounds: Colombian, Venezuelan, Canadian, Italian and Cuban. This cultural combination produces the band’s unique Latin sound that’s seamlessly combined with a touch of jazz.

Sunday, July 17, 4:45 p.m. (WestJet Stage)
Toronto-based Baru-Vibes was founded by Colombian-born Juan Carlos Medrano. His musical roots are grounded in the folkloric rhythms and sounds of the Colombian north coast. His first CD, Poco a Poco, released in the early part of summer 2011, will be performed live for the first time at Habourfront Centre.

Carlos Bastidas
Sunday July 17, 1:30 p.m. (Redpath Stage)
Colombian-born Carlos Bastidas is an award-winning composer and master South American bamboo flute performer. Bastidas has performed with classical and world music ensembles in the United States, Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela and Cuba.

DJ Wayuu
Friday, July 15, 9:30 p.m. (Redpath Stage)
DJ Wayuu (Andres Orbegozo) began his career with support of Dos Mundos Radio on 89.5 FM CIUT and the non-profit association PorColombia Nacional. At Harbourfront Centre he spins digital cumbia mixed with traditional Colombian classics.

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Sunday, June 19, 2011

Corazón de México - Harbourfront Centre - July 8-10

Harbourfront Centre along with its lead summer partner, The Toronto Port Authority, present Corazón de México (“Heart of Mexico”), a festival bringing together the traditional and the modern with sights, sounds and movements from Mexico.

Running from July 8-10, the sounds of Mexico take over Toronto’s downtown waterfront with performers Celso Piña (aka the Accordion Rebel) and Nortec Collective Presents: Bostich & Fussible, who combine traditional norteño and techno music as they take to the WestJet Stage. Also performing is Toronto’s own Dirty Maria, a Latin-alternative rock band, and Mexican ranchera music singer Cecilia Guerrero.

Live Music Schedule:

Sugar Heat (formerly known as Los Homeless)
Friday, July 8, 7:30 p.m. (Redpath Stage)
Sugar Heat is a high-energy, nine-piece band that plays a wide variety of Latin music. Their repertoire includes salsa, cumbia, merengue, cha cha and bachata.

Celso Piña
Friday, July 8, 8:30 p.m. (WestJet Stage)
Mexican-born Celso Piña has risen to be one of the most notable figures in cumbia music. Cumbia has its origins in Colombia’s African and indigenous populations, but has since spread to be one of the most universal Latin American music genres. Celso Piña, also known as “the Accordion Rebel”, is known for blending the sounds of the tropical base with genres from norteño (a genre of music from north Music) to hip hop.

Quique Escamilla
Saturday, July 9, 5 p.m. (Redpath Stage)
Quique Escamilla is a multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter based in Toronto. Despite living far from Mexico, he still remains very attached to his roots and is inclined to support diverse social causes such as human and civil rights and immigration reform through his music.

Dirty Maria
Saturday, July 9, 7:30 p.m. (Redpath Stage)
Dirty Maria exploded onto Toronto’s music scene in early 2004, when the four members decided to establish the first Latin-alternative rock band in the city. Their unique compositions consist of lyrics in Spanish and English, covering a variety of topics ranging from comical life situations to politics.

Nortec Collective Presents: Bostich & Fussible
Saturday, July 9, 9 p.m. (WestJet Stage)
Grammy Award-nominated Nortec Collective materialized from burgeoning Tijiuana electronic scene. By combining Norteño (from the north) and techno, Nortec successfully merges traditional and modern music with a twist of entertaining visuals. Members Bostich & Fussible are committed to generating music that is a positive and proud representation of their hometown.

Cecilia Guerrero
Sunday, July 10, 12:30 p.m. (Redpath Stage)
Cecilia Guerrero is a Mexican ranchera music singer (the music is a waltz, polka or bolero style). She began her career at age 12, and has now recorded five records and received numerous awards. In Toronto, Cecilia has been recognized as one of the best voices and interpreters of Mexican ranchera music.

Fandango with Café Con Pan
Sunday, July 10, 1 p.m. (Boulevard Tent)
Café Con Pan play son jarocho a traditional form of music from Veracruz, Mexico. They explore the roots of son jarocho while connecting with other traditions from Latin America and beyond. Over the past decade, they have maintained a multi-disciplinary relationship with son jarocho with projects that combine research, collaboration, visual arts, teaching and producing. Their performances are guided by band member Kali Niño’s uplifting voice and her effusive zapateado dancing, along with an array of traditional instruments.

El Fandanguito (Musical Bingo)
Saturday, July 9, 4:30 p.m. (Boulevard Tent)
Alec Dempster combines his skills as a visual artist and musician to create a unique workshop based on the Mexican form of bingo called lotería. The traditional lotería game consists of images and verses rather than just numbers. His version includes 60 images that represent son jarocho folk songs. The songs are sung while the players listen and try to identify the corresponding images on their boards.

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