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Here comes Cuba's popular social club

FOR too many people, the first impressions of Cuba revolve around cigars, rum and sugar. Few realize that the real soul of Cuba is music and dance.

The album "Hecho En Cuba" released in 1997 by the Buena Vista Social Club stirred the world and started a whole new focus on Cuban music.

Director Wim Wenders' musical documentary "The Buena Vista Social Club" (1999) recorded the charms of Cuban music by exploring the source of Cuban music. The film won more than 20 prizes throughout the world and was nominated for an Oscar in 2000. It helped spread the heat of Cuban music all over the world.

The Havana Lounge, an ensemble of leading performers from Havana's traditional music scene and featuring some of the original Buena Vista stars, will make its first appearance in the city at the Shanghai Concert Hall on June 16.

Audiences will relish this typical Cuban music from heavyweight musicians, such as singers Julio Alberto Fernandez and Regla Teresa Garcia Caturla, pianist Rodolfo Argudin Justiz, bass Adalberto Avila Martinez, guitarists Bruno Rogelio Napoles Collazo and Tres Ivan Pastrana Palacios, trumpeter Yanko Pizaco Pichardo and Timbal Yulien Oviedo Sanchez.

Many of them are precious gems in the Cuban music world as being well known in Europe. They took part in the recording of the prize-winning album and also performed in the famous film.

Vocalist Caturla is a leading member of "Afro Cuban All Stars." Pianist Justiz is also a member of the legendary Cuban musical group Tropicana. Since the 1930s, the Buena Vista district of Havana has been a synonym for a focal point of Cuban musical traditions. The show "Live from Buena Vista - The Havana Lounge" gives an insight into the wide range of traditional styles in Cuban music which came together in a kind of melting pot in and around Buena Vista.

Almost 20 songs will be played on the night, memorable moments like "Chan Chan," "Maria Cristina," Twenty Years Old" and "Aurora."

Date: June 16, 7:30pm

Venue: Shanghai Concert Hall, 523 Yan'an Rd E.

Tickets: 80-380 yuan


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