La Momposina de Colombia
Toto La Momposina .
Totó la Momposina
Jueves 23 Junio 8pm
As part of artsdepot’s ¡Celebra! season we are delighted to welcome legendary Colombian vocalist Totó La Momposina with her unique, brilliant fusion of Colombian traditional music styles. Totó uses her intense vocal power to make sure her audience is dancing in their seats and ready to get a taste of some of the most evocative music on the planet. She offers, with her band, an eclectic and energetic evening full of rhythm and brimming with passion.
A magnificent singer and dancer, Totó La Momposina has earned respect and admiration in many parts of the world for the power and spontaneity of her performance. Drawing on the music and dance of the Colombian Caribbean, her work is informed and inspired by a rich cultural mix that combines elements from African, Native Indian and Spanish traditions. On stage, Totó’s dynamic repertoire is accompanied by a range of traditional drums, gaitas, brass, tiple, bass, guitar, percussion and chorus. She presents rhythms such as the cumbia, bullerenge, chalupa, garabato and mapale from Colombia’s Caribbean coast alongside the Cuban son, guaracha and rumba.
Totó hails - as did her ancestors - from the village of Talaigua, at the heart of an island in the great Magdalena river, called Mompos (hence ‘la Momposina’). Born into a family of musicians spanning five generations, Totó learned to sing and dance as a child and as a young woman she travelled from village to village researching their various rhythms and dances and studying the art of the cantadora, a central character in village life who dispenses everything from marital advice to herbal medicine. The songs the villagers sing to accompany their daily tasks are performed by Totó on stage and since leaving Colombia she has taken her ancestral music around the world, performing everywhere from France to Korea. In 1982 she accompanied Gabriel Garcia Marquez to Stockholm to perform at his Nobel prize ceremony.
...tub-thumpingly brilliant - Time Out
If Totó la Momposina hadn’t specialised in local styles she could surely be a mainstream star, for she’s a majestic, powerful and versatile singer - The Guardian
Venue artsdepot, 5 Nether Street, Tally Ho Corner North Finchley, London, N12 0GA
Date & Time Thursday 23 June 8pm
Tickets £15 (£12 conc)
Box Office 020 8369 5454
Travel Tube: Finchley Central, Woodside Park (Northern Line)
For more information, images or to arrange an interview please contact:
Nancy Walsh or Alison Fleming on 020 8369 5469/5468 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Legendary Colombian vocalist Toto la Mamposina brings together the music of three races, indigenous porro, puya and gaita with Afro-Latin cumbia, mapale and sexteto. Toto was born in the northern Colombian village of Talaigua, in the island of Mompos. As its name suggests, Talaigua was once an Indigenous land. The Spanish invasion five hundred years ago forced the population inland. "The music I play has its roots in mixed race," she explains. "The flutes are pre-Columbian, the drums of course are from Africa, and the guitar from the conquisadors." However, she points out that the Spanish guitar actually has its roots in Moorish Africa.
If many of her songs sound a bit Cuban, it is for good reason. Through the 19th century, there were huge waves of Cuban immigration along the northern Caribbean Colombian shores near Baranquilla. These slaves brought with them Cuban music, which led to the development of the sexteto, Colombia's cousin to Cuba's son.
"However, I don't think of it as `folklore'," adds Toto. "To me, folklore means something that is dead, in a museum. Traditional music, music from the old days is alive." There probably isn't a single person who has done more to revitalize the music of Northern Colombia's shores. In 1993, she recorded the landmark album, "La Candela Viva" for Peter Gabriel's RealWorld label and ever since has been busy performing at the world's top music festivals. She is a rare performer whose energetic and passionate recordings capture the energy of her live performances. With a fiery voice and a remarkable spontaneous wit, whether she is leading flute and percussion driven porros or brass section and guitar led Afro-Latin cumbias and sextetos, Toto La Momposina uses her torrid vocal power to make sure that there her audience is out of their seats and onto the dance floor, ready to get a taste of some of the most evocative music on the planet.
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