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Top Cuban Bands Ready for 50th Anniversary
The top bands in Cuba are preparing to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Cuban revolution on January 1 with massive concerts held throughout this musical island.

Anacaona, an all female group with a 76-year tradition in Cuba, will be playing under their musical director Georgia Aguirre at the José Martí Anti-imperialist Tribune in Havana, sharing the stage with Azúcar Negra directed by Leonel Limonta.

“We are very happy to be playing for the first time at the Tribune, a venue with lots of meaning for our people, culture and politics,” Aguirre told JR.

From San Antonio to Maisí

There will be nine venues with all night lineups in Havana at the following locations: Doble Vía de Santiago de las Vegas (Boyeros), La Vereda (La Lisa), 180 y final (La Habana del Este), parque La Herradura (San Miguel del Padrón), Plaza 26 de Julio (Cotorro), Plaza Roja (10 de Octubre), Tribuna Antiimperialista José Martí (Plaza de la Revolución), 124 y 45 (Marianano), and in the parking lot of the Latinoamericano Stadium (Cerro).

La Charanga Habanera, Pupy y los que Son Son, Bamboleo, Adalberto Álvarez y su Son, la Aragón, Paulito FG y su Élite, NG la Banda, Yumurí y sus Hermanos, Habana de 1ra., Hayla, Vania, Sexto Sentido and the Santiago Alfonso Company are among the artists who will play January 1.

The president of the Cuban Institute of Music, Abel Acosta, said that despite the ravages left by multiple major hurricanes this year, the island has been holding cultural activities for the 50th anniversary since mid-December.

Acosta announced that Juan Formell, who will be playing with Los Van Van at the Anti-imperialist Tribune will speak on behalf of the Cuban artists. He added that some of the top-line orchestras including La Revé, Pachito Alonso y sus Kini Kini, Sur Caribe, Arnaldo y su Talismán, and Manolito Simonet y su Trabuco will be playing in some of the regions hit hard by the hurricanes.

January 3 is children’s day with activities in the morning and afternoon.

Young Artists Center Stage

Among the Young artists playing on January 1 is Nassiry Lugo, who said she will be playing old and new songs.

Another popular young singer performing New Year’s Day is Leoni Torres, who told JR, “I am sending my greetings to all Cubans for 50 years of Revolution and New Year’s greetings.

“This is going to be a great show,” said the former Charanga Habanera singer, who will be playing songs from his first solo album Bajo la piel, and share the stage with singer Pedrito Calvo.

—What does this anniversary represent to you as a young Cuban?

“This is the first time I have played at these anniversary concerts and I know it is a great responsibility. I hope everything goes well, and that the people enjoy what we have to give.”

United by the Music

Georgia Aguirre predicts a great 2009, “It is going to be a much better year; we have demonstrated that it is impossible to conquer a united people, if we are united with our music, culture and love we will achieve all our expectations in the 51st year of the Revolution.”

For Anacaona, the new year brings lots of concerts to promote their latest album Anacaona no lo puedo evitar (Bis Music).

Singer Osdalgia Lesmes will also be taking part in this year’s celebration at a concert in Marianao featuring Gardi and the Guaracheros de Regla. She said, “This is a great achievement to play at the anniversary should be a great charge of positive energy for the Cuban people.”

(Juventud Rebelde)

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