New Jersey Stage
Saturday, October 1, 2011
GENE & SHELLEY ENLOW RECITAL HALL PRESENTS THE CREOLE CHOIR of CUBA
The Creole Choir of Cuba consists of vocalists Rogelio Torriente, Fidel Miranda, Teresita Miranda, Marcelo Luis, Dalio Vital, Emilia Diaz Chavez, Yordanka Fajardo, Irian Montejo, Marina Fernandes, Yara Diaz.
In glorious songs like Edem Chanté (Listen To Us!), The Creole Choir celebrates the history of their Haitian descendents enslaved to the Caribbean from West Africa. The Creole Choir's ten remarkable singers come from Camagüey, Cuba's third city, located in the eastern end of the island. They grew up and studied music in this old colonial town, designated a UNESCO World heritage Site in 2008 for its colonial architecture. They have nurtured music passed down in their families since the early 19th century, gradually adding modern Haitian sounds following their own first visit to a Haitian festival in 1996.
The Creole Choir was founded in 1994 during the 'Special Period' when the Cuban economy fell into collapse, following the end of the USSR and of Soviet support for the revolution. Food was short while homes and work places often went dark due to lack of electricity. It was at this difficult time that members of the Professional Choir of Camagüey, who were descendents of Haitians, decided to re-forge the resistance songs and laments of their forebears. Lead by their Choir Director Emilia Díaz Chávez, Grupo Vocal Desandann, as they are called in Cuba, revived the songs of their ancestors for modern times. Desandann literally means 'descendents' and as the choir says: “For us, music is like food: it feeds the spirit and is a major inspiration for everyday life.”
Tickets to The Creole Choir of Cuba at Enlow Hall are $35 and can be purchased by calling Kean Stage Box Office at 908.737.SHOW (7469), online at http://enlowhall.kean.edu , or in person at Kean University's Wilkins Theater Box Office. Enlow Recital Hall is located at 215 North Avenue, Hillside, NJ 07205.