Cuban Music Continues Success with Gente de Zona

Havana, May 24 ( Prensa Latina) Cuban duo Gente de Zona surprises again today in social media with another of their usual featuring, this time with Italian trio Il Volo and the theme ''Noche sin día'', a preview of the summer concerts.

Members Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca anticipated during the past days the return of the group to the world market, after referring to some details of the new album with unpublished songs, which will be launched May 25.

Despite the surprising news about the collaboration of the three tenors with Gente de Zona, one of the most listened to Latin American groups of the moment, Michele Torpedine, manager of the trio anticipated Il Volo's new project will follow the path of pop and Latin sound.

'That trajectory will surely allow the group to enter the South American market, but we never reject any collaboration with renowned performers or groups, and Gente de Zona is currently doing a laudable job,' Torpedine said.

The new plate aims to conquer the countries where Il Volo (The Flight) is already established, their manager remarked.

The album, whose title and official launch date are unconfirmed, was recorded in Latin America.

Il Volo is planning several concerts in Italy in June. It is a vocal trio formed in 2009 by male singers and composed of baritone Gianluca Ginoble and tenors Ignazio Boschetto and Piero Barone.

The Italian trio makes an incursion into the classic crossover or lyrical pop genre. In 2015 they won the San Remo Song Festival and represented Italy at the Eurovision Song Contest of the same year, where they won third place.

  • Published in Culture

Cuban President Recognizes Art as a Means to Forge Respect

Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel highlighted the power of art and culture to forge relationships of respect when exchanging with artists who participated in recent events in Peru and the United States.

According to the president, during the People's Summit held last April in Peru it was demonstrated that there is a force capable of uniting Cubans: the identity; and it is time to defend it because in the world some try to fracture it in order to manipulate the history.

Artistic directors such as Elito Revé and Pepe Ordaz told how they performed in Lima, in the context of the celebration of the Summit, to defend their people there through music.

The Cuban president said that the presentations in Peru and the Festival Artes de Cuba that takes place since May 8 at the John F. Kennedy Center in Washington, prove that art is an irreplaceable space for communication between peoples. In the meeting with artists, held on Wednesday at the cultural center La Plaza, Diaz-Canel considered that the events put to the test the effectiveness of the Cuban system of artistic education and valued the role of art as a bridge builder, his contribution to mutual respect and peace, despite the differences.

The dancer, director, and choreographer Irene Rodríguez celebrated the excellent reception of the American public that awarded the artists with extensive standing ovations, while the singer and composer Zule Guerra highlighted the shared spirituality, good energy and great joy around the festival.

To her surprise, many people sang with them Feeling themes and Latin American Boleros.

The best way for the American people to know who Cubans are is to enjoy our art, said Lele Rosales, singer of the iconic orchestra Los Van Van.

The prejudices fell to the floor, the musicians believed that they were going to play in a very serious event, and when they saw people standing ready to move to the beat of the rhythm, the show overflowed with joy, because Cubans are like that, the artist said.

The members of the Miguel Faílde Orchestra assured that at the Kennedy Center Danzón was danced and they praised a group of casineros (dancers of the casino-style) existing in Washington and composed of people from different countries.

The event combines the different arts and visual arts was represented by works of Roberto Diago, Manuel Mendive, and Roberto Fabelo, contemporary dance by the company Malpaso, the theater by plays directed by Carlos Díaz and Carlos Celdrán, among other artists and events.

Artes of Cuba festival in the US capital will conclude on June 3 with presentations from the National Ballet of the Caribbean country, led by the legendary Alicia Alonso.

  • Published in Now

ETECSA is Helping Mourners too

The Telecommunications Company of Cuba (ETECSA) reinforces and facilitates communications for the families of the victims of the Boeing 737-200, which crashed on Friday with 113 people on board.

Quickly and executively, following the guidelines of the Executive President of the Telecommunications Company of Cuba (ETECSA), Engineer Mayra Arevich Marín, ETECSA freed the calls made from the public phones, where these people stayed, as well as the medical staff, authorities and specialists linked to the clarification of the sad event.

ETECSA workers at Tulipán Hotel, which accomodates the relatives of the victims of the plane crash that killed 110 people.

Likewise, and as it was right in such a circumstance, in which they all join shoulders, the company gave these people a recharge GSM (mobile recharge coupon) coupon free of charge.

“In every hand that we reached out to deliver a coupon, we tried to leave the warmth of our solidarity”, pointed out on his Facebook, Javier Ferreira Herrera, head of the Commercial Department of the North Territorial Management of the Havana Division.

Like him, other ETECSA workers decided to support the mourners with the logistical possibilities of the company from that first night. That was, for example, the case of Leidy Díaz Castillo, commercial executive of the Mini Sale Spot of Cerro and Boyeros.

“She hadn’t had time to reach her house back from work”, she tells Cubasi, when a call indicated to her that a new mission awaited her, this time at the Legal Medicine Institute. Firstly there and then at Calixto Garcia Hospital, she delivered the free cards that would allow those people overwhelmed by the tragedy to continue making phone calls.

From that night, Leidy recalls the faces of silent pain that watched her, when she offered them that aid, minimal compared with such huge losses. “I watched their speechless faces and thought about my 20-year-old daughter”, she says.

From social networks, many ETECSA workers have echoed both solidarity and support: “I did not expect less from our enterprise, giving support to those who need it, I am proud of being part of it, thanks you!!!”, Eddy David Amaya Abreu says.

Zaymi Blanco Javier, on behalf of all Cubans is grateful for the attention that is offered right now to the victims’ relatives and adds: “I am sure that all commercial executives of the company are willing to collaborate at any time they need us. My condolences to the relatives and thanks you again”.

Among the condolences and support phrases that continue to flood Facebook people can also read the one posted by another ETECSA worker, Elisa Alfaro, which could well summarize the feeling that encourages all Cubans today: “In Havana, in Holguin and throughout #Cuba, ETECSA joins the pain of all and as always it puts its resources and services in terms of those who need them before an event of this magnitude. We facilitate services, doctors fight to save the survivors, the people acted with discipline, the press informs minute by minute…., this is #Cuba, this is #ETECSA, this is how we are. #StrengthCuba”.

Translated by Jorge Mesa Benjamin / Cubasi Translation Staff

  • Published in Now

Let’s See. How is Cuba Doing?

Better, a lot better, as we all know, better than all the other suffering and exploited countries around them.

Miami. – Today in this world filled with turmoil, especially in our region, Cubans remain unaltered in their busy everyday lives making their society better whether they are aware or unaware of that fact. I have just returned from Havana, where the heat and the crushing humidity are everywhere. This reminds us that we are getting closer to the hottest season of the year, accompanied, thanks God by the famous cloudbursts of May. And I say, thanks God, because this year has been prodigal in rains, always welcomed by crops, as well as other trees and plants, especially the flowers, either in the countryside as in the city.

And in the city, in Havana, where I stay the longest, rains drag the dust off streets. A thick layer of dust accumulates in streets after only a week without heavy rains. The dust rarefies the atmosphere and makes heat unbearable. Although already late at night it freshens up the atmosphere and sleeping becomes pleasant.

The morning dawns are clear, although with the passing of hours, around noon, as usual in the entire Island, and the entire tropic, clouds gather, rain threatens, the result of high temperatures is palpable and the steam, and the lucky ones seek and find some shelter in the shades, wherever they can find it, especially if there’s some breeze with it, no matter how faint it is.

In this time of the year cloudbursts at times become storms that you come with blinding lightnings and deafening thunders that scare and wreck havoc, sometimes severe, to the electric devices, especially coolers and refrigerators, if you are careless enough to leave them plugged in to electricity before leaving home. Which brings along the great doubt –just like that of Hamlet¬--, to unplug or not unplug?

Ah!, how those beneficent storms are cursed by hundreds of thousands of compatriots –both young and old--, if that happens while exiting school or your workplace when they soak us through and through and mess with our shoes. Especially if you happen to be very tired, in afternoon hours, complicating a lot more your return home.

Thank goodness for umbrellas and raincoats that lately have been available for purchase in stores, and so many have gotten used to wearing. And thank goodness for some improvement in the public transportation system at least in Havana. The private sector, the almendrones (vintage cars), are still going strong, although due to complaints of those paying for their ride, and the subsequent actions of competent authorities, they have been able to diminish and regulate the avarice of the owners of the same cabs.

The garbage collecting services at homes as well as solid waste collection, like the remains of the trimming of trees and plants, the rubble left by construction sites has lessen enough. At least in Playa municipality where I live. I know that in other areas of that same municipality and other municipalities of the capital it’s not like that. There was a time not so long ago that that situation dragged for years, was unacceptable, dangerous and harmful for everyone, in all areas of all municipalities of the capital. The population's outrage forced the change we have seen.

Procrastination, that is, the lack of care and interest, on behalf of the responsible authorities to improve basic public services and other services and necessary procedures exasperates the population. That makes the population lose patience with them and the trust in the very ones.

But in Cuba authorities step forward, sometimes later than sooner, but they step. Cuban society, as socialist and revolutionary as it is sees the positive changes that are crucial to make of it, despite the griefs, a better society where they can live in peace, healthy, fed, educated, enjoying life, seeing the tangible results of so many decades of sacrifices, in the whole of its society, as well as in themselves, and in their children, daughters, grandsons, granddaughters and the rest of relatives.

One can feel that Cubans -Cuba--, in its vast majority, is still well; now with a new generation of men and women taking control of the State and the Government, certain of the path they chose, freely chosen, and in their dreams. Better, a lot better, as we all know, better than all the other suffering and exploited countries around them East, West, South, as well as… up North.

Cubasi Translation Staff / Amilkal Labañino Valdés

  • Published in Now

Cuban Experts Identify 50 Fatal Victims of Air Disaster

Cuban experts identified 50 fatal victims of the air disaster occurred last Friday in this capital, today reported the director of the Institute of Legal Medicine, Sergio Rabell.

In statements to the press, the official said that in the last hours they identified 10 other people, five of them foreigners (four of the six Mexican crew members and one of the two Sahrawis living on the island).

According to Rabell, the rapid progress in identifying the remains of the tragedy is due in large part to the experience of the specialists working in the case of the Boeing 737-200, leased by Cubana de Aviacion, which crashed last Friday with 113 people on board.

He also highlighted the tenacity of forensic experts, anthropologists, criminologists and other experts at the Institute of Legal Medicine, and recalled that all the bags with the bodies were already examined and the belongings of the fatal victims were classified.

Only three women -all Cubans- survived the disaster, but one of them, 23-year-old Gretell Landrove, died on the eve, so the total death toll rises to 111.

  • Published in Cuba

Mexican Gov't Investigates, Suspends Damojh Airlines

The Ministry of Communications and Transportation (SCT) initiated an investigation into Global Air, registered under the corporate name of Damojh Airlines, and suspended its activities as a result of the aviation accident in Havana.

'Derived from the unfortunate accident that occurred on May 18, the company Damojh Airlines was notified of the start of a major extraordinary verification, which meets the objectives of verifying that the current operating conditions comply with the regulations,' the federal dependency issued last night in a statement.

The SCT said it intends to collect information to help with the investigation of the unfortunate event.

'In the same way, the company is being notified of the temporary suspension of activities while the verification is being carried out,' it stated.

The Ministry explained that this decision was taken given the events and despite the fact that the company has been subject to annual verifications, most recently in November 2017; their aircraft have renewed their airworthiness certificates every two years and the last ones were granted in August and October 2017.

It recalled that by virtue of the incident that occurred on November 4, 2010, in which an aircraft of the company carried out an emergency landing in Puerto Vallarta due to a failure of the nose landing gear, the company Damohj Airlines was subjected to an extraordinary verification.

As a result of this, a suspension of operations was applied from November 11 to December 18, 2010, lifted upon being accredited that they resolved the observations made.

Similarly, as a result of the complaint filed by Captain Marco Aurelio Hernandez in October 2013, a greater extraordinary verification was carried out from November 4 to 8 of that year and one of the aircraft was suspended until the documentation was presented to meet the verification requirements, which took place on January 10, 2014.

  • Published in World

TALKING FILES: Catching images

At the Museum of the Image visitors can see 1900 pieces regenerated, classified with rigor, and perfectly working, which laugh at the passage of time and trip up nostalgia.

Bernabé Bebo Muñiz, a hospitable antiquarian born in the 1925 Havana, reaffirms himself in every ambush that life sets for him, as a scrutinizing and tenacious individual in the findings, who skips all borders when it comes to shape his fancies. Not by choice he founded in 1992, in his house on 8th Street in Santiago de Cuba’s Vista Alegre suburb, the only Museum of the Image that exists in our nation, and likely, in Latin America.

The development of Bebo, whom I briefly met in one of his visits to the capital, is really interesting: he was linked to several informative spaces abroad in the 40s and 50s, he definitively returned to Cuba in 1959 and, after participating in the founding of the newsreels of the Cuban Institute of Cinematographic Art and Industry (ICAIC)and Tele Rebelde channel, he settled in Santiago de Cuba, where he set up the photography labs of the eastern region, and over time, he took over the leadership of ICAIC’s cameramen in the province, before joining, in 1975, the Film Studies of Television as director of photography.

However, his instinct to find good adventures and to mock routine demands more: he worked in several feature films and documentaries, and from 1973, before the surprise and skepticism of his friends and relatives, he started to try his fortune as a private collector, to cultivate the art of detail, in the way of a classical Homer, without suspecting that his new hobby would lead him to find his real loves: silhouettes, volumes, sets, flashes; profuse light; chiaroscuro.

From now on, he would become an obsessed antiquarian who will open his arms to photography, cinema, video, television and radio. His ambition has no walls!

Colleagues and people, in general, who visit his home, are surprised by the plurality of textures that are seen in his Museum of the Image.

There visitors can see 1900 pieces regenerated, classified with rigor, and perfectly working. Among them, there stand out a 19th-century projector of manual operations; a 1871 stick, convertible into a photographic camera; a devise to make photos of the size of a 40-cent coin, which dates from the beginnings of the previous century; one of the first TV cameras seen on the island in the late 1940s, and a tiny Petal camera, from that same time, belonging to a dangerous spy whose name was swallowed by a shark.

Together with these devices, attractive from the first glance, there are small anthological tapes, some of them filmed by Bebo himself, in which visitors can see images of the burial of Orthodox leader Eduardo Chivás, of Fidel’s entry into Havana in 1959, and of the Literacy Campaign, among many other events of our national history.

Bebo Muñiz, who died in 2001, tried to theoretically base his Museum of the Image with numerous files and, in his eagerness to save a good part of the national identity in the visual field, he never had vacations. Such integrity earned him numerous medals, trophies, plaques and other awards, such as the Shield of Santiago de Cuba, stored by this always smiling man in a small room of his house, which few people had access to.

Those who knew him more thoroughly say he had modesty mania, something that matters him little: his name will be present in any monographic account that is made on the audiovisual theme. Current communicators owe him that. At the moment, his biography appears in my work “Hijos de la luna” (Sons of the Moon), designed to help youngsters lacking knowledge, who venture through the paths of the picturesque thing.

Translated by Jorge Mesa Benjamin / Cubasi Translation Staff

  • Published in Now

Good Student and Classmate. That is the way Grettell Landrove is remembered

Grettel Landrove Font was known to be an excellent student, always caring about her classmates. A disciplined girl determined to overcome any obstacle. She was one of the three survivors of the plane crash. Sadly, she passed away this Monday.

She would be graduated from Industrial Engineering at the Polytechnic University Jose Antonio Echeverria (CUJAE) this year. In her sixth year, she was immersed in the conclusion of her thesis on the redesign of the Hotel Tryp Habana Libre.

Classmates, professors, and management board of the above-mentioned university, leaders of the Federation of University Students (FEU), among others, shared the sad hours with Grettell’s family and friends in the funeral ceremonies held at the funeral parlor located in Calzada and K Streets.

Ariacne Jimenez and Ania Diaz told CAN that both joined Grettell as a team. All had the same professor, thesis tutor, and subject.

Her death has been a devastating blow. We are deeply sad at the university. Those who go to know her in the year and a half she lived here in Havana after coming from the University of Holguin, can attest she was intelligent, easy-going girl, full of life and dreams.

We were three Grettells in the classroom. And every time we faced an exam, and some comments led you think one of us had failed, you can bet Landrove Font did not. That is why it hurts so much that one month prior to get her degree as Industrial Engineer, she cannot fulfill such dream, Grettel Gakin said.

Karen Lopez, Claudia Pena, and William Castellanos stated that she had a good-natured mood. She was friendly and did her best to obtain good results in every test. She sometimes asked to do some of the exams in an extraordinary period so she could honor her work.

The young girl, one of the three survivors of the plane crash that occurred in Havana last Friday, was hospitalized at the Intensive Care Unit of the Calixto Garcia Hospital, as she had severe brain injuries.

At the time of her death, she was extremely critical and the multidisciplinary medical team could not reverse the situation, according to the official statement of the Ministry of Public Health.

With Grettell’s death, the number of victims rises to 111.

Translated by Sergio A. Paneque Diaz//CubaSi Translation Staff

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