Cuba's National Day of Culture celebrates all the arts

The programme of activities includes the 23rd Festival of Cubanía in Bayamo, in the eastern province of Granma, from 17 to 21 October, and in Havana with the International Theatre Festival, starting on October 20, as well as concerts, exhibitions and literary presentations.

Musical bands, bookshops, schools, communities, writers and artists in general will join the many events throughout the country to commemorate the beginning of the war for independence on 10 October 1868.

That same year, 10 days later, on October 20, the 'Bayamesa' by Pedro Figueredo was first sung, which became the National Anthem of Cuba.

According to the director of the Centre for Cultural Communication of the Ministry of Culture, Alexis Triana, the celebration of the Day of Cuban Culture aims to preserve and strengthen the historical memory and cultural life of the country, and develop projects that contribute to the formation of values ​​in the population.

At a press conference, some of the organizers highlighted the tribute that several Cuban symphony orchestras will perform, with a series of concerts throughout the island, to the historic Argentine-Cuban guerrilla Ernesto Che Guevara, on the 50th anniversary of his fall in combat.

A week of Cuban cinema will show classic films suc as 'The Belle of the Alhambra' by Enrique Pineda Barnet; 'The survivors' by Tomás Gutiérrez Alea; 'Vampires in Havana' by Juan Padrón; and 'The Broken Gods', by Ernesto Daranas, amongst others.

To this are added dance performances, theatre performances, music, humor and shows for children in various settings and squares.

Various activities have been programmed by the Cuban Music Institute to celebrate Cuban Culture Day, including national tours of troubadours and different groups, the performance of music bands, children's singers and representatives of the Cuban Agency of Music. Rap, among others.

On Monday 16th, the Cuban Rap Agency celebrates its 15th anniversary with a big concert in the Palacio de la Rumba, in Havana, with the support of the Hermanos Saíz Association.

On Wednesday 18, the Casa del Alba will hold the longest Rumba, and on Friday, October 20, the National Concert Band will perform at 4:00 pm, in the Plaza de Armas, and will have as guest the soprano Maria Eugenia Barrios.

In each territory there will be cantorías and children's activities performing songs of the songbook of the Cuban music. Likewise in each territory many bands will perform.

Since 1994, there has been a 3 day Fiesta de la Cubania takes place every year in Bayamo in Eastern Cuba. This year it celebrates the 45th anniversary of the birth of the music form Nueva Trova (of which Silvio Rodriguez is one of the top players). Timbero and top singer Isaac Delgado will be performing there. It also celebrates rumba which became 'intangible heritage' on the UNESCO register in 2016, and also intercultural ties with Latin America and the Caribbean. There will be a major theoretical conference there too about Cuban nationality and identity.

The Cuban Festival in Granma and the Chocolate and Coffee Festival in Guantánamo are also dedicated to the Cuban Culture Day.

Others that are offering their art to the population are Los Muñequitos de Matanzas; the Orquesta Barbarito Diez and the Ochareo Folk Group of Cienfuegos.

Two prominent interpreters of Cuban music, Luna Manzanares and the troubadour Adrian Berazaín are also on tour. The first with its show Recuento, began its tour on October 13 in Guantánamo, Ciego de Avila, Santiago, Holguin, Bayamo, Las Tunas, Camagüey, Sancti Spíritus, Villa Clara, Cienfuegos, Cárdenas, Pinar del Río and Havana. The second, along with his group, will tour Sancti Spíritus, Villa Clara, Cienfuegos, Matanzas, Pinar del Río, San José and Artemisa.


Link to original report in Spanish and original report in Granma in Spanish here