Spain Con­nects Mu­si­cally With Saint Lu­cia

The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL - By

An­gel­ica O'DonoghueHolder

Oc­to­ber 2016 her­alded 30 years of diplo­matic re­la­tions be­tween Spain and Saint Lu­cia—a sig­nif­i­cant mile­stone of cul­tural unity, arts, her­itage and ways of life, de­spite lan­guage dif­fer­ences. To fur­ther hon­our and cel­e­brate this an­niver­sary the Em­bassy of Spain in Saint Lu­cia will host a mu­sic con­cert at the Na­tional Cul­tural Cen­ter on Tues­day, Novem­ber 22, fea­tur­ing the riv­et­ing Jorge Pardo Jazz Band. What bet­ter way to cel­e­brate unity than through the univer­sal lan­guage: mu­sic. Ear­lier this week Jesús Lavalle Mer­chán, Chargé d' Af­faires at the Em­bassy of Spain Con­sulate in Saint Lu­cia, sat with the STAR to give his take on the his­toric event.

What is the main pur­pose of the event?

Mer­chán: As you know, this year Spain and Saint Lu­cia are cel­e­brat­ing the first thirty years of diplo­matic re­la­tions. One of the ob­jec­tives for Spain in the Caribbean is to pro­mote cul­tural ac­tions that are con­sid­ered an ex­change of cul­tural ex­pe­ri­ence be­tween lo­cal and Span­ish artists. That is the rea­son why we de­cided to cel­e­brate with a big con­cert do­ing some­thing that is com­pletely new here in Saint Lu­cia; that is Jazz plus fla­menco.

Is this the band’s first visit to Saint Lu­cia?

Mer­chán: It is. This is one Spain's best jazz bands. Mix­ing jazz with fla­menco is some­thing dif­fer­ent. Jorge Pardo, the band's sax­o­phon­ist, has also been awarded the Best Euro­pean Jazz Artist 2013 prize. He is com­ing with three other per­sons, a group of gui­tarists, drum­mers and a Span­ish fla­menco dancer. I think it's go­ing to be a very in­ter­est­ing show be­cause with mu­sic, fla­menco and dance, they are go­ing to grab and hold the pub­lic's at­ten­tion. How will non-English-speak­ing mu­si­cians con­nect with Saint Lu­cians? Mer­chán: All the ac­tiv­i­ties that have been or­gan­ised by the Em­bassy of Spain tried to con­nect the lo­cal artists with the Span­ish ones, and the lo­cal tra­di­tions with the Span­ish ones. We have par­tic­i­pated in No­bel Lau­re­ate week. We have also par­tic­i­pated with the Em­bassy of Mex­ico and the French Al­liance in In­ter­na­tional Women's Day, which gave lo­cal artistes the op­por­tu­nity to ex­press them­selves at the Na­tional Cul­tural Cen­tre last March. And now with this ac­tion we want to con­nect a musical tra­di­tion that al­ready ex­ists here. We have been suc­cess­ful in other ac­tiv­i­ties and this will be the same.

Will there be any lo­cal per­for­mances?

Mer­chán: No, not at this mo­ment be­cause we haven't got a lot of time. The singers and the mu­si­cians are ar­riv­ing on Mon­day morn­ing. At the be­gin­ning maybe a lo­cal artiste could per­form to­gether with them. Nev­er­the­less, they are re­ally in­ter­ested in hav­ing a meet­ing with the lo­cal artistes who are in­ter­ested in jazz and the fla­menco be­fore the con­cert and prob­a­bly with the stu­dents from the School of Mu­sic.

What does the Em­bassy hope to achieve by bring­ing this event here?

Mer­chán: We con­sider that amongst the cel­e­bra­tion of the thir­ti­eth an­niver­sary, the re­la­tions that could be con­sid­ered as a cul­tural present of the govern­ment of the em­bassy of Spain to peo­ple of Saint Lu­cia. That's why we are re­ally in­ter­ested that all the peo­ple in­ter­ested in the fla­menco, jazz, and mu­sic should be at the Na­tional Cul­tural Cen­tre on Tues­day at 6:45 p.m. – No ad­min­is­tra­tion.

What min­istries or stake­hold­ers are in­volved in putting the show to­gether?

Mer­chán: One of the things we have been con­sid­er­ate about, is that the con­cert is spon­sored by the Na­tional Cor­po­ra­tion Agency of Spain and also by lo­cal com­pa­nies and in­sti­tu­tions. We have to thank Saint Lu­cia's min­istry of cul­ture, the Saint Lu­cia Ho­tel and Tourism As­so­ci­a­tion and the Cul­tural De­vel­op­ment Foun­da­tion. Also, we want to thank lo­cal com­pa­nies such as, J. Ber­gasse and North­west. I am also grate­ful for the sup­port from the Min­is­ter of Cul­ture.

Jesús Lavalle Mer­chán, Chargé d’ Af­faires at the Em­bassy of Spain in Saint Lu­cia; Deputy Per­ma­nent Rep­re­sen­ta­tive of Spain to the OECS.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Saint Lucia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.