This Friday, July 15, returns La Mar de Músicas. Cartagena will once again become the open door to the music coming from Latin America and Africa. In this edition, the festival turns its gaze to the Caribbean, and has the Dominican Republic as guest country. In addition to showcasing the new sounds of the Caribbean country, the Cartagena festival’s program includes Zucchero, Jacob Collier, Melody Gardot, Eliades Ochoa, Yann Tiersen, Youssou N’Dour, Omara Portuondo, Tanxugueiras, La M.O.D.A., La Cabra Mecánica and Guitarricadelafuente. Both to consult the program and to purchase tickets, can be done through the website of the Sea of Music.
The 27th edition of the festival is made up of 41 names of the international, national and local music scene coming from a dozen different nationalities. In addition to the Dominican Republic there are artists from Mexico, Cuba, France, Italy, Senegal, Puerto Rico, United Kingdom, Colombia, United States and Spain.
This year’s festival will focus on showcasing the new music scene that has emerged in the Dominican Republic. The more traditional music has given way to a new one full of alternative electronic and indie groups. This unprejudiced generation comes to La Mar de Músicas spurred by the global explosion of Latin rhythms to show a renewed version of traditional rhythms such as merengue, bachata or mambo. From July 15 to 23, Cartagena will host, among others, Xiomara Fortuna, considered one of the most transcendental creators of the Caribbean; Mula, a futuristic tropical combo of merengue and reggaeton; and Riccie Oriach’s tasty union of rock with tropical rhythms.
The festival also features writer and cultural agitator Rita Indiana, considered one of the 100 most influential people in Latin America. Vicente Garcia, winner of 3 Latin Grammys and one of the most talented Latin American musicians, many are already calling him the successor of Juan Luis Guerra. The young actress and singer Letón Pé is also a protagonist of this new wave. Also performing in Cartagena will be one of the most viral artists of the moment: Alex Ferreira, who is inspired by old-school Latin ballads. The entourage is completed by Sandro Reyes with a party to one of the genres, which are already world heritage: the bachata.
Music will be played in six different venues. Return the early morning of the Arab Castle with the Estrella de Levante stage after the performances on Friday and Saturday at the Auditorium Paco Martin del Parque Torres, as well as free live performances in the Town Hall Square and Wednesday night at the Paseo del Puerto. To this are added the usual concerts of the Repsol Stage in the courtyard of the Old CIM and the morning program of the terrace of the Real Club de Regatas. In the latter enclave next to the Mediterranean will be located the stage ‘We are from here’, which will showcase bands in the region. They will perform at 13.00 hours from 15 to 23 July in this order the following artists: Laura Sam and Juan Escribano, Marcelo Criminal, Firmado Carlota, Goodbye November, Mala Cotton, Franvvi, Master Sword, filament and Goblin Circus.
The City Council of Cartagena awarded this year’s La Mar de Músicas Award to Senegalese Youssou N’Dour. The delivery will be before his performance at the Auditorium Paco Martin on Monday July 18. The superstar of African music is one of the most influential people in the world, a popular icon for his commitment to social and cultural issues, able to combine tradition and modernity in his music, and tireless fighter fighting prejudice about the African continent.
Meanwhile, a jury made up of journalists and music industry professionals has awarded the young Ed Maverick the II Paco Martin Award to the revelation artist of global music. The Mexican will perform on the opening day, July 15, in the Patio del Antiguo CIM. For the jury, “the singer represents like no one else the new wave of songwriters who dazzle with their sensitivity, simplicity and naturalness”.
Senza una donna’, by the Italian rocker and bluesman Zucchero will be one of the first hits of the Auditorium Paco Martin del Parque Torres on Friday July 15. The great jazz diva Melody Gardot will perform on Saturday 16. The American returns after her 2015 performance with a new album of voice and piano. The early hours of the Arab Castle will be to end Friday night with the Dominican star Vicente Garcia, while Saturday will reach the early hours dancing with the Cuban Cimafunk.
On Sunday 17 will perform the French Yann Tiersen, an unquestionably skilled composer, gifted at putting together his works from minimal melodic patterns and to be evocative at every beat. On Tuesday 19, Cuba’s Omara Portuondo will begin her farewell tour of European stages in the city that has welcomed her so many times. Meanwhile, Thursday 21 will mark the 25th anniversary of the first album by La Cabra Mecánica: ‘Cuando me suenan las tripas’ (When my guts sound). A meeting to enjoy one of the iconic bands of Spanish music.
The Paco Martín Auditorium will also be the loudspeaker of one of the emerging voices already consecrated in Spanish music: Guitarricadelafuente. The artist from Castellón will perform on the night of Friday 22 presenting his latest album, ‘La Cantera’. After his live performance it will be the turn of the Dominican Rita Indiana, who will raise the music of his ‘Mandinga Times’ to the sky of the Moorish Castle. The 27th edition will put the finishing touch to the Paco Martin Auditorium on Saturday 23 with the virtuosity of the British multi-instrumentalist Jacob Collier. Considered the enfant terrible of jazz or the Mozart of Generation Z. The festival will end at the Castillo Árabe with the fusion of Latin music, R&B, disco and pop of the Dominican Letón Pé.
The Repsol Stage in the courtyard of the Old CIM shows an eclectic program of artists with concerts at 9.30 pm. The festival kicks off there on Friday July 15 with one of the idols of the Mexican Generation Z: Ed Maverick, who will receive the Paco Martín Award for best new artist in global music. On Saturday, July 16, jazz and bossa nova will be played by the Catalan trombonist Rita Payés. The Colombian Lido Pimienta will show her mix of tradition with electronics and synthetic pop on Sunday 17. Cuban songs by Buena Vista Social Club will be present on Monday 18 with the voice of Eliades Ochoa. On Tuesday 19 Muerdo will be on stage celebrating his ’10 years of Flores, Viento y Fuego’ tour.
While the most feminine, brave and joyful flamenco of Las Migas will sound in a free concert on Wednesday 20 (Repsol Day). The piano of French Sofiane Pamart, one of the most played contemporary classical music artists of the moment, will shine on Thursday 21. The talent and sweetness of Valeria Castro from the Canary Islands will set the tempo for the night of Friday 22, while the last night of the CIM, Saturday 23, will open up to a new dimension of flamenco with Rosario La Tremendita.
This year the popular free concerts in the Town Hall Square are back. From July 15 to 23 there are nine live concerts scheduled, all at 8 pm. The Queen of Dominican Fusion Xiomara Fortuna will be the first on Friday, July 15. On Saturday 16 will be the violinist María de la Flor, combining Hispanic and Latin American folklore. On Sunday 17, the futuristic sound of the Dominican trio Mula, full of electronics and Caribbean rhythms, will arrive. Giving continuity to this new scene of the island, the Dominican Alex Ferreira will perform on Monday with his guitar.
The following day, Tuesday 19, will be the time of his compatriot Riccie Oriach, multi-instrumentalist of the new fresh wave of tropical rhythms. On Wednesday 20 the Town Hall Square will become a real bachata party with the Dominican Sandro Reyes, turning the center of Cartagena into a ‘bachetódromo’. The Ghanaian band Santrofi will perform on Thursday 21 filling the square with highlife. The Mexicans Daniel, Me Estás Matando will surprise with their particular renovation of the bolero on Friday 22nd. And the closing of this stage will be the Sevillian group Vera Fauna on Saturday 23rd with a catharsis of psychedelia, funk and disco textures.
The festival’s trademark is its parallel activities. Since last July 6 are taking place both La Mar de Cine, La Mar de Arte and La Mar de Letras that give an overview of the culture of the guest country: Dominican Republic. In addition, the festival has a children’s workshop section.
Festival tickets are sold out. Tickets can be purchased through the official festival website lamardemusicas.com. Tickets are sold virtually. The ticket offices will only open two hours before the start of the festival if there are tickets left.
La Mar de Músicas is organized by the City of Cartagena and is sponsored by Repsol, Estrella de Levante and the Regional Government through the Festivals Brand Region of Murcia and the Institute of Cultural Industries. In addition La Mar de Músicas has the collaboration of the Ministry of Tourism of Dominican Republic, the Embassy of Dominican Republic in Spain, Kia Talleres M Gallego, Radio 3, the Polytechnic University of Cartagena, Iberpiano, Ikea, Soltec, Lhicarsa, Hidrogea, Alsa, Crusol and Plus Ultra.