Talk about comprehensive. The 11th Chicago Latino Music Festival has announced its lineup with programs running Sept. 8 – Dec. 1 and including everything from Latin American music to Spanish classical music.
Among the highlights of this festival – a program of the International Latino Cultural Center (ILCC) that will be staged at multiple venues throughout Chicago – will be: Six world premieres and three U.S. premieres, collaborations with the Ruth Page Center, the Ravinia Festival, the Old Town School of Folk Music and the Ear Taxi Festival, and multiple free concerts. With programming that spans music from the Baroque period to the 21st Century, the festival will feature international artists such as Spanish classical guitarist Pablo Sáinz Villegas; Dúo Belcorde (Manuel Briega, violin, and Adrián Fernández, Spanish guitar; internationally renowned Mexican pianist Mauricio Náder; Colombia’s Cuarteto Q-Arte, plus Chicago’s Avalon String Quartet, Baroque Ensemble, Chicago Arts Orchestra and the University of Illinois Orchestra.
Produced by the ILCC with artistic directors and composers Gustavo Leone (Argentinian-born) and Elbio Barilari (Uruguay-born), the annual Chicago Latino Music Festival also serves to develop the careers of Latino composers by commissioning new pieces. This year’s commissions are from Colombian composer Blas Atehortúa and Leone. Both of the commissioned works will be premiered by the Chicago Latino Music Festival in Colombia, prior to being performed here, as part of a cultural exchange funded by the MacArthur Foundation.
The Chicago Latino Music Festival also sponsors an artist-in-residence program for Chicago-based musicians that focus on the dissemination of the Ibero-American repertoire. The KAIA String Quartet is the 2016 ensemble-in-residence, performing in the festival on Oct. 6 at the Harold Washington Library.
Among the admission-free programs is one on Nov. 17 at 6:30 p.m. at the Harold Washington Library’s Cindy Pritzker Auditorium, 400 S. State, designed to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Miguel Cervantes de Saavedra (1547-1616), author of “Don Quixote.” It will feature the internationally renowned Mexican pianist Mauricio Náder and Ravinia Festival’s Welz Kauffman in the role of narrator. On the bill will be “Pensive Quixote” by Víctor Carbajo (1970); “Quixote in Love” by Víctor Carbajo (1970); excerpts from Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra’s “Don Quixote” (1605, 1615); passages from the ballet “Don Quixote” composed by Ludwig Minkus (1869); “Tres Quijotadas de un Hidalgo” by Marvin Camacho (1966); “Vihuelas y guitarrones” by Domingo Lobato (1965); “Castilla” (from “Suite Española”) by Isaac Albéniz (1886); and “Maese Pedro’s Puppet Show” by Manuel de Falla (1923).
On Nov. 6, the festival will present a Baroque opera at the Art Institute in conjunction with the museum’s exhibit, “Doctrine and Devotion: Art of the Religious Orders in the Spanish Andes.”
A special dance performance is slated for Dec. 1, 7 p.m. at the Studebaker Theater in the Fine Arts Building, 410 S. Michigan Ave. Under the auspices of Havana-Chicago Connections, it will feature work by choreographer Victor Alexander (who trained in Cuba, was a principal dancer for the prominent Contemporanea de Cuba, and has since relocated to Chicago where he is now director of the Ruth Page School of Dance). On the program will be: “Ritmos Cubanos” (traditional Cuban music); the world premieres of “Sinuosa Fuga del Cambio” by Gustavo Leone and “Cuban Canvas” by Elbio Barilari, and “Black Decameron” by Leo Brouwer (1972). Tickets are $30.