wed 26/06/2019

Cuba

This World: Cuba With Simon Reeve, BBC Two

The singer-songwriter Jesse Malin opens one of his songs with a monologue about a trip to Russia. Fresh out of a relationship, and invited by the gypsy punk troupe Gogol Bordello to open their tour of the country, he looked forward to seeing Red...

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7 Days in Havana

The most famous hotel in Havana is the Hotel Nacional de Cuba, since the 1930s the only place to stay for writers, mobsters and, most of all, film stars. During the city’s film festival, the Nacional is the hub, with dozens of filmmakers sitting in...

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Alternative National Anthems

With Euro 2012 about to end and the Olympics looming, we'll be hearing an awful lot of national anthems over the next couple of months. Don't we all agree that the majority of them are inadequate - often being turgid tunes with no reference to the...

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Exclusive First Listen: Mala In Cuba

It's a nervous beginning. This is the first ever presentation of the first proper album by one of the lynchpins of British underground music, and the soundsystem isn't right. Record label personnel and friends are flung across Paris to requisition...

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Juan De Marcos Afro-Cuban All-Stars, Barbican Centre

As both a catalyst and a musician, Juan De Marcos Gonalez has had a massive impact on Cuban music in the last couple of decades. He formed the retro group Sierra Maestre 30 years ago, when to resurrect old-style Cuban music was considered decidedly...

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Roberto Fonseca, Barbican

The dazzling Cuban pianist Roberto Fonseca delighted a packed Barbican last night – but part of the fun was seeing him negotiate the balance between more soulful, minimal playing and sheer technically brilliant extravagance. Is he more an heir to...

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ENB star launches new ballet company

English National Ballet's virtuoso Cuban star Yat-Sen Chang is launching a new company to train young dancers in his directorial debut. Called Espinosa Dance Project, the company aims to school young dancers in three-month blocks with a performance...

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CD: Rodrigo y Gabriela and C.U.B.A. - Area 52

It must have been difficult for Mexican acoustic instrumental guitar duo Rodrigo Sánchez and Gabriela Quintero to know where to go next. Initially discovered in Dublin as high-end buskers, they’ve built a career on energised acoustic pyrotechnics,...

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Pan Am, BBC Two

This is a very odd series. Even the BBC seem to be wondering what on earth they're supposed to be doing with it, since after the Wednesday night airing of these first two episodes Pan Am is moving to Saturday evening, with a Thursday repeat. ...

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Carlos Acosta, Premieres Plus, London Coliseum

For most dancers the first base is to get principal roles. For a star like Carlos Acosta, second base becomes urgent: to find the career path beyond classical ballet. Like Sylvie Guillem he seeks out a new contemporary dance path to fulfil, being...

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The Creole Choir of Cuba, Barbican

The Creole Choir of Cuba burning brightly on behalf of their ancestors

As a world music critic one gets used to the stream of superlatives that generally arrive in the wake of whatever big new act is being plugged. World music promoters have a particularly hard job because they don’t just want to preach to the...

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AfroCubism, Barbican

A misnamed supergroup no greater than the sum of its parts? Not last night

In theory, AfroCubism should have been one of the most exciting world-music releases of the year; how could you go wrong with a supergroup composed of Cuban and Malian musicians working towards combining their musical styles in a new and exciting...

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