News, Events & Stories from the Latino Community across the U.S.
San Francisco Teens Help Celebrate American Sabor During Showcase
Five talented teen and youth dance and music groups participated in the Teen Latin Dance Showcase program at the San Francisco Public Library. Over 200 audience members cheered on over 50 dancers and musicians.
The Dance Mission Theater Grrrl Brigade performed two different sets of dances; one more traditional and one more contemporary fused dance to songs that included “Magalena” by Sergio Mendez, “Hasta a bajo” and “Hey Baby” by Pitbull. Dance Mission’s GRRRL Brigade is an intensive dance/leadership development program designed to provide high quality dance training, performance opportunities, and a sense of self-empowerment for San Francisco's girls ages 9 to 18.
Marsh Youth Theater performedhip hop and Latin style dances to songs that included “Latinoamerica”, “Hood Hop”, “Samba Vocalizado”, “El Muerto” and “Taboo”. This organization provides youth ages 2-19 with a high quality theater arts experience integrating music, dance, drama, stagecraft and performance.
The Ruth Asawa San Francisco School of the Arts (SOTA) performed a Latin jazz dance to the song, “Bella Maria de my alma”. SOTA is a public visual and performing arts high school dedicated to providing students with an alternative educational program that fosters artistic development and creativity.
The East Bay Performing Arts group, “Son de la Tierra,” performed in the genre of Son Jarocho (from Veracruz, New Mexico) that included music and dance selections such as La Guacamaya (dance), El Ahualulco, La Manta (dance) and El Buscapies. Since 1968, in the heart of Richmond, California, more than 50,000 student artists – from all walks of life – have shared a home where they have found within themselves the means to develop skills that enable them to think, lead, and contribute to the world around them at the East Bay Center for the Performing Arts.
The Latin Jazz Youth Ensemble (LJYE) of San Francisco closed the program performing with three Afro Cuban standards back-to-back that include “Lagrimas Negras,” “Cuarto de Tula” and “Carnival.” All dance and music groups were invited back on stage during their performance to dance and celebrate the talent of their peers and cap off a day of celebration and creativity. LJYE is celebrating its 10th year as a performing ensemble and includes musicians ages 10 to 18. Their repertoire features Latin jazz classics and original compositions.
Jesse, “Chuy” Varela, music director at KCSM radio, and Ms. Toni Bernardi, and the Library’s Director of the Office of Children and Youth Services, presented a honorarium courtesy of Ford Motor Company to each group following their performance. Dancers, musicians and their teachers were very excited to receive recognition and funds to help sustain and expand their community programming.
Guest blog by Lisa Vestal, San Francisco Public Library
Photos by Jason Doiy, courtesy San Francisco Public Library