Canciones tradicionales de puerto rico: Las 10 mejores canciones del festival boricua

Los juegos y las canciones folkóricas infantiles de Puerto Rico – Puerto Rico is Music!

by prismusic

A nuestras manos ha llegado la publicación Número 7 de un “Boletín de Artes Populares” del Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueña cuyo tema principal es “Los Juegos y las Canciones Folkóricas Infantiles de Puerto Rico”. La edición orginal del boletín fue en 1982, y en el 1998 se publicó una edición revisada. 

Reproducimos el texto de la Introducción como preámbulo a la versión digital del Boletín. 

Dentro del estudio del folklore no puede pasarse por alto aquellas manifestaciones populares de los primeros años, las cuales, por su misma naturaleza, van conformando nuestra personalidad futura. Nos referimos a las canciones que jugamos en el patio, en la calle o en el interior de la casa; a los romances y coros que aprendemos en la pre-adolescencia, todos ellos caminos que nos abren los sentidos y la sensibilidad… 

Es en los juegos y cantos infantiles donde quizás se manifiesta más nuestra herencia cultural hispánica, aunque los orígenes de estos datan aún de más lejos en el tiempo y en el espacio: de Grecia y Roma. La copla, el aguinaldo, la seguidilla, la décima, el romance com a las canciones infantiles nos llegaron a través de los colonizadores españoles y fueron incorporándose en la conciencia nacional nuestra hasta formar parte integral del ser puertorriqueño. 

En estos momentos en que el televisor ha acaparado la atención y el tiempo de los niños y que la pasividad frente a éste y frente a los modernos juguetes electrónicos ha sustituido al juego colectivo y, por ende, la comunicación entre hermanos, vecinos, amiguitos, padres e hijos, debemos hacer un alto y recapacitar sobre este asunto: ¿perderá nuestra niñez el encanto mismo de esa edad? ¿Se convertirán nuestros niños en entes mecánicos como los juguetes mismos que ahora sustituyen las muñecas de trapo hechas en casa, los carritos de madera hechos con sobrantes y latas de salchichas? 

¿Tendremos, pues que recordar a “Doña Ana”, la “Gallinita ciega”, la “Cebollita”como parte de un pasado hermoso, pero pasado al fin y aceptar el llamado “progreso” aunque nos resulte un tanto chocante a muchos de nosotros? 

Entiendo y en eso estoy de acuerdo con nuestra Esther Feliciano Mendoza, que debemos asumir una actitud conciliadora entre las dos cosas punto hay que entender, por ejemplo, que los temas de muchos juegos y canciones tradicionales corresponden a una época, a unas condiciones existenciales distintas a las que viven nuestros niños de hoy. ¿Cómo hablarle de moros y reyes cuando su realidad actual no es esa? ¿Cómo relatarles cuentos de hadas madrinas, princesas encantadas y brujas malas que con varitas mágicas o brebajes malignos cambian el mundo, cuando el niño está constantemente bombardeado por programas televisados donde se usan armas nucleares com a pistolas de infinidad de formas y poderes, de rayos láser, etc., etc.?  

Nos dice Esther Feliciano Mendoza: “conciliemos lo valioso del ayer con lo maravillosos del presente y demos al niño de hoy lo que su momento le pide”.  

En este boletín haremos una presentación de la canción y el juego infantil tradicional en todas sus etapas e incluiremos poemas y canciones más recientes, para así tener un panorama más completo del tema que hoy nos ocupa. 

Esperamos que nuestra selección sea del agrado de todos y que sirva sobre todo, para despertar la sensibilidad del niño que todos llevamos dentro. 

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BOLETÍN LOS JUEGOS Y LAS CANCIONES FOLKLÓRICAS INFANTILES DE PUERTO RICODownload

Canciones escolares de Braulio Dueño

Canciones escolares de Puerto Rico

Canciones del paisaje borincano

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LA MUSICA EN PUERTO RICO – HISTORIA DE LA SINFONIA

La Música en Puerto Rico

Se puede distinguir entre la música popular proveniente del folclore y la llamada música de arte, que conocemos con el poco adecuado nombre de clásica.  En la música popular las danzas puertorriqueñas aparecieron a mediados del siglo XIX, derivadas de la contradanza, una forma musical procedente de Haití, como transformación africana de la contradanse francesa.  Estas danzas se transformaron en Cuba, convirtiéndose en el popular danzón.  En el sur de la isla, donde se encontraba la mayoría de la población negra, aparecen los ritmos folclóricos conocidos como la Bomba y la Plena. Los ritmos actuales son la Salsa, una evolución de los ritmos cubanos y el Reggaeton, una fusión entre el Reggae y el Rap.

La Salsa es el ritmo que se impone en el Caribe hispánico, especialmente en Puerto Rico, la República Dominicana y Cuba. Su nombre puede proceder de la salsa picante que aparece en toda comida latino-americana. La Salsa es sugerente, picante, como indica su origen. En Cuba era muy popular la forma de canción denominada son. Algunos opinan que la salsa es una variante picante de la misma, definida en la frase échale salsita al son. El ritmo de la salsa puede dividirse entre el montuno, interpretado por el piano o el instrumento eléctrico que lo sustituya y el tumbao, el patrón rítmico de la conga interpretado por el bajo. También en Puerto Rico tiene influencia la Bachata de origen dominicano. El Flow es una variación lenta del Reggaeton, un tipo de balada.

                                             Pau Casals

En el campo de la música de arte los compositores nacionalistas nacen a principios del siglo XX, siguiendo el romanticismo europeo. Pero su esplendor aparece a mediados de siglo, en la década de los años 1950. Se debe a un catalán ilustre, Pau Casals (1876-1973), que se instaló en la isla. Su madre Pilar Defilló era una joven portorriqueña nacida en 1853 en Mayagüez de familia catalana. Sus padres habían conseguido una buena posición en la colonia, pero posiblemente por causas políticas el padre y el hermano mayor se suicidaron. En 1860 la madre, abuela de Pau Casals, decide regresar a España con sus dos hijos más pequeños. Se establecieron en Vendrell, Tarragona. Pilar empezó a estudiar piano con Carlos Casals, el organista de la Iglesia de Santa Anna del Vendrell y terminó casándose con él. En 1876 nace Pau Casals, el segundo de sus once hijos.

El 11 de diciembre de 1955 Pau Casals realiza su primer viaje a la tierra de su madre, acompañado por Marta Montañez, que había sido una de sus alumnas en Prada donde estaba exilado, con la que se casaría en 1957. Al año siguiente empieza a organizar lo que se convertirá en los célebres Festivales Casals de Puerto Rico. Se inauguran en 1957 con la Orquesta del Festival dirigida por Pau Casals. Pero un ataque al corazón durante los ensayos se lo impide, pasando la dirección a Alexander Schneider.

En la primavera de 1958 Casals colabora con el segundo Festival. Se funda el Conservatorio de Música de San Juan, siendo nombrado Pau Casals su Presidente. También nace la Orquesta Sinfónica de Puerto Rico. Durante 18 años Casals dirige el Festival, hasta su muerte en 1973, pasando luego a su viuda Marta. Actualmente el Festival es administrado por la Corporación de las Artes Musicales, dependiente del Gobierno de Puerto Rico.

En la composición musical nace un neo-nacionalismo que mezcla el modernismo atonal con elementos rítmicos y melódicos inspirados en los ritmos negros y criollos isleños. Entre los compositores destacan los nombres de Héctor Campos Parsi, Jack Delano y Amaury Veray. Ritmos africanos como la Bomba o la Plena y las danzas puertorriqueñas inspiran a otros compositores como Narciso Figueroa y Luis Antonio Ramírez.

A comienzos de la década de los años 1970 destacan compositores como Rafael Aponte Ledée, Francis Schwartz, Luis Manuel Alvarez y Ernesto Cordero. Desarrollan una música vanguardista, electroacústica sin abandonar por ello los ritmos caribeños.

A partir de los años 1980 destaca Roberto Sierra del que hablaremos en particular por su relación con la sinfonía. Otros compositores son William Ortiz Alvarado, Alfonso Fuentes, Raymond Torres y Mariano Morales entre otros. William Cepeda nacido en Loiza, un pueblo del este de la isla, capital de la música tradicional, triunfa con obras de fusión de la música afro-puertorriqueña con el jazz y la música clásica, con obras como su “Bomba Sinfónica”.

Media review — Newspaper «Divya» — No. 14 (929) dated 04/10/2013 — DO BANANAS HANG CORRECTLY? BANANAS HANG CORRECTLY

Just before the start of our journey, before the grueling 10-hour flight across the Atlantic Ocean, a fair thought arises: wouldn’t it be better to stay at home? After all, probably none of my countrymen was in Puerto Rico, even Rimsky-Korsakov, returning from Rio de Janeiro, did not look here. And if someone was, then, most likely, as a tourist or as a businessman, and we are here on a completely different matter. We are going to take part in the Week of Russian Culture in Puerto Rico and the opening of the Russian Cultural Center in San Juan, the capital of this country. nine0003

There are six of us: the director of the N.A. Rimsky-Korsakov House-Museum Helen Bordovskaya, the senior researcher of the museum and the author of these lines, Igor Buev, and four teachers of the children’s art school named after. N.A. Rimsky-Korsakov. But they are not going to teach and share their experience, they will perform as artists: Natalya Rumyantseva (piano), Olga Zheleznikova (domra), Alexander Tupikov (accordion), Anton Mikhailov (bass). They will sing and play musical instruments, I will present my book about Voin Andreyevich Rimsky-Korsakov at the University of Puerto Rico, and Helen will tell the students about Russian Orthodox holidays. nine0003

In addition, we have an extensive program of acquaintance with local attractions, so you won’t be bored, and in your free time we can only wash and shave.

We fly from St. Petersburg to Moscow for an hour, then ten hours from Moscow to New York, three hours at a smoke-free airport, and another five hours from New York to San Juan just above the Bermuda Triangle. We fall into a turbulence zone, the plane shakes as if on potholes, but, fortunately, this does not last long. Looking forward to arriving in Puerto Rico like manna from heaven. After that, everything will be fine, and it really is. nine0003

We are met by Nelida, who, in fact, organized the trip. She is a university professor, doctor of science, teaches the history of culture, loves the composer Rimsky-Korsakov very much, wrote a book about him in Spanish. Last year, Nelida was in Tikhvin, at the N.A. Rimsky-Korsakov House-Museum, she liked everything very much, and she obtained an official invitation from the local university for the Tikhvin delegation to Puerto Rico.

We don’t know what it cost her, but we do know that Nelida is a very kind person. The host party pays for travel, food and accommodation — what else can you dream of? But we are not popular and not honored, not great scientists and writers, and our names are widely known to a narrow circle of specialists. nine0003

It’s late evening in San Juan, and it’s pretty cool for the tropics, there are few people at the airport, we get our luggage quickly, and, which is especially pleasant, we are not searched, we were already searched in New York before departure, and in the sky over the Bermuda Triangle we could hardly acquire something forbidden.

Puerto Rico is a US dependent territory, although it has self-government, in other words, we flew from America to America. And we have American visas, there are no Puerto Rican visas.

I break away from the group a bit, looking for a way out of the airport into fresh air, where I can finally smoke. And at the very exit, behind a glass wall, I see Nelida, she stands with her hands upraised and shouts something to me through the glass. I run to her, and we embrace a stone’s throw from a benevolently smiling policeman. Almost everyone here is friendly, we will soon understand this, although they are more restrained in their emotions than we are. Five steps from Nelida I see her husband Billy, a very handsome and respectable Spaniard, somewhat reminiscent of a Russian master of the 19th century. We know each other, he was also in Tikhvin last year, we hug, and I first of all ask in broken English where I can smoke here. Here, thank God, it is possible, I go to the other side of the road and smoke two cigarettes in a row with pleasure. Sasha joins me, he is also a heavy smoker, the rest of our comrades do not have any bad habits. Well, it doesn’t matter today. Everyone is euphoric after a tiring flight, everyone is happy and ready to love the whole world. nine0003

The next day we don’t have any performances and concerts, we are given a little rest and acclimatization. We are sitting in a restaurant, a dark-skinned guitarist walks between the tables and sings beautiful and incomprehensible songs, probably about heavenly life.

Suddenly someone announces that there are Russians in the restaurant. A roar of approval is heard in the hall, and we are asked to sing. Anton performs “Black Eyes” with great success, and then Sasha takes the guitar, and we sing in chorus, rather harmoniously, “There is only a moment between the past and the future, it is he who is called life.” We are loudly applauded, it is clear that they liked the song, and Helen is asked to retell its content. Then she translates into English four lines from the song, you can’t imagine a better retelling. There is another long murmur of approval in the hall. nine0003

How good it is here, this impression comes in the first days and takes root, getting more and more confirmations and ignoring any information that may seem unpleasant.

It’s February now, it’s snowy and blizzard in the historic homeland, but here it’s +30 during the day, +20 at night, but it’s not hot, there is almost no wind, the warm air caresses the skin and is felt by the whole body as a gentle touch. The sea is calm, the water is cool and very dense, it is easy to stay on it, without making almost any movements. We are brought here in the evening, there are already few people, and this is also pleasing. The beach is sandy, the bottom is gently sloping, like on the Riga seaside, behind the beach there is a beautiful garden of exotic plants, where you can walk barefoot for a long time, in solitude and blissful peace, feeling the fullness of life. nine0003

And the food is so good! Once they served such a large piece of meat that even I, who did not suffer from a lack of appetite, could not eat it, which I still regret. And what a delight fruit juices with ice, especially mango juice, I give myself a vow to prepare the same in Tikhvin, but, of course, I don’t fulfill it.

The famous Bacardi rum is also very good. We are taken to the plant where it is made, they give us a tour, give us a sniff of all the main varieties and try a cocktail. After that, there is a desire to get to know him yourself. Sasha and I are standing at the bar, ordering ourselves a small glass, then a second. I don’t feel like it anymore — probably this is not the drink that is drunk in glasses. We admire its mild taste, aroma, and come to the conclusion that this is the best rum in the world, although our experience in drinking rum is very limited. Then it turns out that we were not far from the truth, Bacardi rum is indeed extremely popular in all parts of the world. So we had a chance to join the high culture, now we need to show our own, and this time is not far off. nine0003

Our artists have more than one concert, they perform in front of students of the children’s department of the conservatory, in front of university students, at the opening of the Russian Cultural Center, and, finally, in the national symphony concert hall.

The Week of Russian Culture is organized by Rossotrudnichestvo under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia and the Russian-Puerto Rican Friendship Foundation. And the most important event of this week is the opening of the Russian Cultural Center. This is not surprising, it was created for two years, and not only official organizations, but also Russian students and local residents took part in this good deed. Russians living permanently in Puerto Rico and Puerto Ricans who are interested in Russian culture will meet here. This is another bridge connecting peoples and continents, another place in the world where people will try to understand each other. nine0003

Portraits and brief biographies of Rimsky-Korsakov, Tchaikovsky, Borodin, Rachmaninoff, Stravinsky and Shostakovich are on the walls. It means that they are known and loved here, it means that they managed to penetrate into the heart of another people. Yes, it is easier for musicians to do this, they do not need an interpreter.

And here is a small exhibition of books in Russian, Spanish and English. And among them are two of my books: “Warrior Andreevich Rimsky-Korsakov. Finest Hour» and «The Invisible City of Kitezh». I have strange feelings. It is a mixture of surprise, light euphoria, peace and a sense of the importance of what is happening. So I put my little brick in the foundation of a large and beautiful building that will someday be built. I would like a couple more bricks, but that’s how God wills. nine0003

State Secretary of Puerto Rico David Bernier and Rossotrudnichestvo representative Yury Zaitsev speak at the opening of the Russian Center.

Our Tikhvin artists in Russian national costumes also perform very successfully, they are applauded in unison, the lenses of cameras and movie cameras are constantly directed at them. But it is clear that they are not very happy. After all, this is not a concert, but an official event where they cut the ribbon, drink cocktails and eat canapes, agree on something, make the necessary connections, and music and national costumes are just a background for the main action, in the center of which are officials. nine0003

Of course, it is a great honor to perform at the opening of the Russian Cultural Center in America, and this performance can even be called historical. But the musician does not need anything historical, he needs people to listen carefully to his every note, he puts too much into it.

And on February 20, 2013, our Tikhvin artists perform at the National Symphony Concert Hall in San Juan. This is the main and largest hall in the country, it was built recently, in 2008. The hall has the shape of an amphitheater, that is, the stage is located in the center, and rows of spectator seats surround it from all sides. The acoustics here are excellent, each sound is not only well heard, but also acquires some special timbre, pleasant to the ear. Not only Tikhvin musicians take part in the concert, but also the San Juan String Ensemble and the Puerto Rican National Choir. These are the best musical groups in the country, and ours are the best only in their small town. But today they represent Russia here, Russian culture, and they need to perform at the level of famous St. Petersburg and Moscow musicians. I know that they can, and they know it, but how else will everything work out. nine0003

The San Juan String Ensemble and the national choir perform beautifully, “what rigor and what harmony”, you catch every sound, they simply enchant the local audience and us who have flown here from across the ocean. And their stringed instruments are unusual. What at first glance looks like a guitar is actually a variant of it called a quattro, it has four double strings. For us, this is a local exotic and all the more interesting. True, we also notice something else. The performance of the Puerto Rican choir and ensemble obviously lacks virtuosity, but perhaps virtuosity is not needed, but harmony is needed. nine0003

Our people will perform folk songs and Russian classics, including, of course, Rimsky-Korsakov: the world-famous «Flight of the Bumblebee», the romance «The Flying Ridge of Clouds is Thinning», the aria of the Varangian guest. Alexander Tupikov will play the accordion and his own compositions.

I sit in the hall and film what is happening on camera. For some reason, I’m not very worried, although I know that there was very little time for rehearsal. But I have already seen their previous performances and I know that they will gather.

Olga Zheleznikova comes out first, then Anton Mikhailov. I follow the room. I see stretched necks and bowed heads in intense attention. They listen carefully, this is just what you need. And then deafening applause and shouts of bravo in both my ears. And so the whole concert. This is a real, big success. Our musicians are virtuoso, artistic, inimitable. They managed to win the hearts of the audience in another hemisphere, in a country where its own musical culture is at a very high level.

But there were other concerts, and they were always accompanied by keen interest and admiration of the audience. I remember how the students of the children’s department of the conservatory laughed and had fun, listening to Mussorgsky’s «Flea» performed by Anton Mikhailov. This is really a fun piece, and they, without understanding the words, understood it! One very small Chinese boy laughed and had fun especially noisily, he literally could not find a place in his chair and was ready to take off with happiness. And then, when Anton finished his speech and went down to the hall, the boy sat down next to him and timidly took his hand. nine0003

I see how attentively the local musician Roberto Morales listens to Russian music from a CD given to him, and then easily picks up «Katyusha» on the guitar.

I remember with what reverence they took her domra from Olga’s hands and how they admired this magical instrument. Yes, and on the program of our concert, a domra was depicted next to the local quattro.

Anton sings at the university “Beyond the island to the core”, the doors are open, a strong voice is heard on the street. A dark-skinned student passes by and hums the melody of this Russian song under his breath. Maybe he will remember something too. I tell university students about Voin Andreyevich Rimsky-Korsakov, people come up to me and say that they dream of a time when all officers will be like this Russian naval officer. Yes, it would be nice, although monotonous, of course. nine0003

There are students here who study Russian, and among them there are those who have already been to Russia. Asking why they chose Russian, because our language is considered the most difficult, after Chinese. Sometimes it is chosen by the most advanced students to prove to themselves and to people what they are capable of. But here, it turns out, another reason. I am told that the Russian language is very beautiful. It’s so unexpected that I don’t even know what to say. After all, we ourselves do not hear ourselves and do not even suspect the beauty of our language. But still, I take this explanation as the biggest compliment to me personally, as if I invented this language myself. I love him too, and it’s so nice when someone across the ocean shares your sympathy. nine0003

But it turns out that there is another reason for learning our language besides the beauty of its sound. This is Russian classical literature, this is Dostoevsky, Tolstoy and Chekhov. But in the first place is Dostoevsky, and by a wide margin. They talk about him as something unattainably high, as a being of a transcendental order, and a visit to the Dostoevsky Museum in St. Petersburg is perceived as something absolutely incredible and almost the main event of life. Such words are also pleasant to hear, and yet it is a little strange to hear them. After all, if they love Dostoevsky so much, then maybe they don’t live so well, and they really don’t want to part with this illusion. nine0003

In our spare time from official events, we travel around the island a lot and are literally fascinated by its beauty and serenity. We explore caves, waterfalls, wander along mountain paths, admire tropical nature, listen to the singing of frogs. Frogs are the symbol of Puerto Rico, they are called «koki» here, because during singing they make, in essence, only two sounds: «ko-kii». They do not indulge in variety, but there is some inexplicable charm in the monotonous continuity and strength of these sounds. I remember we listened to them for at least half an hour. nine0003

I also saw mountains in the Caucasus, but there they are rocky, snowy, majestic, reminding people of something eternal. And here the mountains look like big hills, they are somehow cozy, homely, and it seems that they are not made of granite and basalt, but of sand and clay, as evidenced by their soft, good-natured outlines. With my head I understand that this cannot be, but our perception naturally goes ahead of reason and is often not inclined to agree with it. As La Rochefoucauld said, the mind is always fooled by the heart. nine0003

There are a lot of impressions, they accumulate and add up to a general, very favorable picture. If Cuba is the island of freedom, then Puerto Rico is the island of dreams. Paradise corner. No one works here, at least at first glance one gets the impression. And on the second one too. During the nine days of our stay, we traveled half the island and never saw working enterprises, smoking chimneys, cultivated fields and banana plantations. In general, they did not see a single working person, except for professors of higher educational institutions, musicians, employees of museums and libraries, and service personnel of restaurants and hotels. True, we saw the Bacardi plant, but not all the people work there. nine0003

There are no operating railways on the island at all, although the old 90-kilometer narrow-gauge railway has been preserved, and even that has not been used for a long time. And why are railways needed if everyone has a car (most often a Toyota), but there is no large-scale industrial production.

Millions of tourists come here every year, so the population is engaged in their service. And, apparently, this business is profitable, many people live in their own houses, furnished like museums: antique furniture, beautiful dishes, a lot of books, reproductions of paintings and photographs of family members, their ancestors and descendants on the walls. Dishes, I just don’t know why, they have lunch and dinner in restaurants, maybe they drink tea at home in the morning, I couldn’t find out. nine0003

But if these people live so well, then they are probably kind, condescending and not inclined to condemn their neighbor for petty sins. And this is also confirmed.

Once I got separated from a group looking for a place to smoke. Then it turned out that you can smoke wherever there is no roof over your head, but then I did not know this yet. To be left alone in a foreign country without knowing the language, without documents and money (they stayed in a hotel) — you would not wish such an enemy. I must have looked very sad and confused, and a policeman came up to me. I was about to yell «They didn’t read me my rights» as I struggled to remember how it would be in English. But the policeman did not ask me for my documents, did not put me face down and handcuffed me to be taken to the station. He smiled benevolently and ordered to follow him. And I, of course, went, being firmly convinced that the doors of the police car would now hospitably open before me. Instead, he simply took me to the hall where our concert was to take place, and left me there without any supervision. These are miracles! nine0003

My comrades did not immediately tell me that they just warned this policeman by describing my appearance to him. And for a long time I was in blissful thoughts that such policemen should be cloned and transported to all countries of the world. And this favorable impression remained, and I still keep it and am grateful to this policeman, although I now know the truth. I really want to believe in all good things.

Pretty soon we will learn that the island has its own production, there are factories and plantations, and Puerto Rico’s exports exceed imports. Sugar, coffee, tobacco, pineapples, bananas, fertilizers, medicines, fabrics, plastics are produced here, there are petrochemical enterprises and a plant for the production of medical equipment. We have not seen all this and continue to think that Puerto Rico lives mainly due to tourists, whose number in some years exceeds the population of the country. Tourists at 19In 1999 there were 5 million, and the population of the island was 3.5 million. And despite this, there are many unemployed people here, and they often leave for the United States in search of work. There are over 1 million Puerto Ricans in New York City alone.

We have beggars standing by the church, but here, right on the street, with plastic cups. And, as a rule, they don’t throw papers at them there, only a trifle. A woman stands with a plastic cup at a traffic light, in the middle of the road, approaches the open windows of stopped cars. Somehow I can’t forget it. nine0003

But I also remember another beggar who makes a very favorable impression. He sits on a folding chair near the road and reads a tattered book. It is interesting that he reads, probably, «Crime and Punishment» by Dostoevsky. This is so romantic! (Actually, not very much.) I have not seen beggars with books here, after all, there is a different culture here, although it is not entirely clear what kind.

In the evening we sit in a restaurant where the famous Spanish flamenco dance is shown as a special treat. Actually, this dance is not Spanish, but gypsy, perceived and edited by the Spaniards. Or maybe it was the gypsies who took as a basis something that already exists in Spanish culture and creatively reworked it. After all, before coming to Spain, they did not have such a dance. And here we are, having flown in from snowy Russia, admiring the incredible combination of passion and restraint in this amazingly beautiful dance. It has not become outdated in the last 500 years and will probably live for the same amount more. Our dinner is getting cold on the plates and cannot distract us from aesthetic pleasures. Thanks to everyone who created and improved this miracle, whoever they were. nine0003

In the museum of the university we are shown a painting by Francisco Oller «Wake». Oller is one of the most famous Puerto Rican artists, his paintings are in many European museums, including the Louvre. He lived in France for a long time, was friends with Cezanne, it is believed that he made a certain contribution to the development of impressionism. But Oller loved his country very much, he always returned there and died in 1917 in San Juan. In Puerto Rico, he is revered, there is even a school named after him. The painting «Commemoration» is one of the most important works, he painted it for several years and, apparently, he himself attached great importance to it. In the program of our concert in San Juan, reproductions of Kustodiev’s «Maslenitsa» and Oller’s «Commemoration» were printed as symbols of the two countries. nine0003

We stand in the museum for a long time in front of the masterpiece of a Puerto Rican artist and cannot understand and accept it. The plot of the picture is very strange: a small child died, and all relatives and friends rejoice at this event. They drink, play musical instruments, hug, and their faces are lit up with happy smiles. They explain to us that if a child dies before the age of seven, then he has not yet had time to sin, he is an angel, and his soul will go straight to heaven. But this explanation doesn’t change anything. That people in a civilized country at the end of the 19th century could rejoice at the death of a child seems so unnatural and impossible that it evokes nothing but rejection. One by one we move away from the picture, and I also move away in noble indignation. There is no contact between the two cultures. It happens sometimes. nine0003

In the Catholic Cathedral we see what we expected to see. Rows of armchairs, stained-glass windows, sculptures, very few icons. And suddenly, on one of the church walls, I was surprised to see a full-length portrait of a man in a suit and tie. It turns out that this is a local saint, you can pray to him. I seem to understand that if a person has been wearing a jacket all his life, then you cannot draw him in an omophorion, but the desire to pray does not arise. Out of habit, I am baptized on the altar and for some reason I hasten to leave the church. What can you do. We are able to perceive only the familiar and what can somehow be correlated with it. But this does not always work out, God is my judge. nine0003

When Helen gave a lecture at the University of Puerto Rico about Russian holidays, there was also an interesting episode. Getting acquainted with students, she tried to find analogies to their names among Russian names, and in most cases it worked out. But not always. And there is nothing to be surprised here, because the same thing happens in religion, and in folk traditions, and in art. Maybe that Chinese boy who so admired Mussorgsky’s «Flea» will someday get a portrait of this composer in the Russian center as well. Or maybe it won’t. There is no Glinka, no Scriabin, no Prokofiev, and each case has its own reasons. And if Lermontov is untranslatable, then music is not always translatable into the language of another perception. And we should rejoice that many of our composers and writers are heard and loved across the ocean, although they are certainly heard and loved in a different way. nine0003

We didn’t like Oller’s painting «Wake», but the painting is interesting, and even now I regret that I didn’t look at it very carefully.

We were told that local art historians study it very carefully, and several dissertations have already been written on the topic of whether bananas are hanging correctly in this picture. The fact is that bananas are plucked green, and they ripen at home. If they are left to ripen on the mother plant, they will lose their flavor and aroma. In nature, bananas do not hang on a branch, like apples or pears, under the influence of hormones, they begin to grow upwards, scientists call this phenomenon “negative geotropism”. nine0003

In Oller’s painting, the bananas hang from the ceiling beam just as they do in nature, and the word «hanging» is not very suitable here at all, because they are directed upwards. In this form, bananas may not last very long, as the ripened fruits will fall. Whether a Puerto Rican peasant could have hung bananas in the way Oller depicts them is very difficult to say, but most likely he could. After all, yellowed bananas will still need to be removed and eaten, and long before they begin to fall. But if a bunch of bananas is turned over and hung differently, they will last longer. It seems to make more sense. Or maybe bananas ripen better and become tastier if they continue to be in their natural form, as in Oller’s picture. nine0003

The question is not so simple, it requires special biological knowledge to solve it. But dissertations about bananas were written not by biologists, but by art historians, obviously suspecting that Oller put some special, secret meaning into the image of bananas. But even if they invested, all the same, bananas do not justify or condemn people and explain their behavior very poorly. After all, our art critics are not so hotly discussing the question of whether the desert is correctly depicted in Kramskoy’s painting «Christ in the Desert» or whether the peasant hut is correctly depicted in Surikov’s painting «Menshikov in Berezovo». And you can’t say that it’s not important, but perhaps there is something more important in these pictures. nine0003

And then strange thoughts arise. If enlightened residents of Puerto Rico are so interested in the question of whether bananas hang correctly, then perhaps all the more serious issues have been resolved and each person lives in harmony with himself. Despite the fact that there are unemployed and beggars in the country, the general structure of their life is somehow more in line with the mentality of the nation. It is very difficult to judge this, and even now everything is obscured by emotions. But something tells us that Puerto Rico is a beautiful island and people here live happily and serenely, and they will achieve final bliss when they resolve the issue of whether bananas are hanging correctly. Yes, of course, they hang correctly if everything is going so well for them. nine0003

In the main tower of the University of Puerto Rico, a handbell ensemble organized by Nelida performs. I have already heard them on record, but the live performance is simply mesmerizing. Moreover, the melodies and themes are not so important here, but the very sound of the bells is important, filling the soul with joy and light. We should not forget this, it will come in handy someday.

Igor Buev, senior researcher at the House-Museum.


Moscow Spring A Cappella: music, walks, master classes

May
April 30, 2019

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In addition to concerts, the Moscow Spring program includes spectacular musicals and musical performances, master classes, and a creative program dedicated to Victory Day.

With the beginning of May, the capital will turn into a huge stage: performances will take place not only at the usual festival venues, but also in parks, food malls (DEPO and Central Market) and even on the balconies of buildings. The reason for this is the third International festival competition of performers «Moscow Spring A Cappella». nine0128

This year the festival starts on May 1st and will last until May 12th.
The venues will be open from 11.00 to 21.00 on weekdays and from 10.00 to 22.00 on weekends.
Admission is free, and participation in all festival events is completely free.

The program of the open competition is designed not only for adult connoisseurs of music. The organizers also took care of the children.

Walks to the music: along the streets, parks and even along the Moscow River

These days it will be wonderful just to walk around the capital, and not only in the center. It will be possible to listen to the performances of soloists, vocal groups and choirs both at the central and district venues . For example, stages will be installed on Revolution Square and Tverskaya Square, in Kamergersky Lane, on Kuznetsky Most and Novy Arbat streets on Profsoyuznaya, Gorodetskaya, Mitinskaya, Svyatoozerskaya, Novopeschanaya Streets on Yunosti Square in Zelenograd, and on Sirenevy Boulevard in Troitsk. nine0003

In addition, at the Moscow Spring it will be possible to combine attending a concert with a walk in the park — performances by the contestants will be held in Zaryadye, Gorky Park, Muzeon, VDNKh…

An even more unforgettable adventure will be a musical journey along the Moscow River — this year, the concerts of «Moscow Spring A Cappella» will be held for the first time on ships of the Radisson flotilla.

Acquaintance with geography through music

This year «Moscow Spring» will become truly global! 19 people will come to the competition in the capital5 performers and groups from 40 Russian regions and 26 countries, including Germany, Austria, Great Britain, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Croatia, Finland, Israel, USA, Puerto Rico, Paraguay, China, the Republic of Korea, Singapore, the Republic of the Philippines, South Africa, Turkey.

Many contestants will perform folk pieces from their countries, or compositions written by their compatriots. For example, the repertoire of the «Naama» choir from Israel includes original Israeli works in choral arrangements, folk songs, spirituals and much more. The chamber choir Melibea A Cappella from Salamanca will delight you with old and modern Spanish melodies. The Mezzotono band from Bari will surprise you with original cover versions of Italian songs. nine0003

Getting to know music through master classes

How is that possible, you say? Come and see for yourself. For example, You can make musical instruments at master classes in the children’s «Creative Studio» on Revolution Square . Paint maracas, decorate a souvenir violin or decorate a xylophone — experienced teachers will tell you how to perform these and other creative tasks correctly. On the street. Rozhdestvenka, along with a large number of musical events, thematic master classes will be held, including the «Music Notebook» master class, where participants will create a visual aid for teaching musical notation. And at st. Gorodetskaya will earn «Musician’s House» — at the master class «Musical Miniature», we learn how to sculpt, create musical instruments from plasticine. At the “Musical pun” master class, we create an interior panel from colored cardboard using the appliqué technique, also on the theme of musical works.

In the «Creative Studio» on Dmitry Donskoy Boulevard vl. 11 children will learn how to decorate a music box using the decoupage technique, make a drum with their own hands, paint baseball caps with notes and keys, etc.

How to make an accordion with your own hands? What is «coffee grisaille»? You can not only ask these and other questions, but also find answers to them in the Symphony Studio on Svyatoozerskaya Street. Every day there will be original master classes where visitors will learn a lot of new things!

Vocal lessons and more

During the festival, young guests of the Musical Lounge on Revolution Square will be able to comprehend the basics of musical education, take the first lessons in playing various instruments. In a fascinating way, visitors will be told about musical notation, explain how choral singing begins, and discover why it is so important for real musicians to keep pace and rhythm. Fans of original lessons are welcome at the piano, drum kit and ukulele lessons, they will be able to try their hand at a real rock band. children’s school of vocal art. Here the guys will not only master the basic vocal techniques, but also try with the voice of , as artists of the a cappella genre, imitate the sound of classical musical instruments .

Victory Day at the festival

Songs of the war years will be performed at festival venues in the city center, soloists of the Concert Ensemble of the Central House of the Russian Army will perform with the Victory Salute program. Street theaters will present musical performances that will remind you of the heroes of the war years, the hopes, aspirations and fears of people who considered it their absolute duty to defend the Motherland

Thematic lessons will also be held in creative schools.

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