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Spring Equinox Concert: Baroque on The Rocks with Tembembe Ensamble Continuo

By Marissa Ávalos

This special musical event takes place every year in the canyon of El Charco del Ingenio, in an amazing, natural, sculpted space carved by nature over time immemorial. Since its inception, the canyon concert has been a collective celebration of life with an ever growing and enthusiastic audience. The presentation of artists and groups is always of a very high quality across various musical expressions.

Spring Equinox Concert
“Baroque on The Rocks”
Sat, Mar 18, 5:30pm
El Charco Canyon
Admission 180 pesos (members), 150 pesos (students and teachers)
Ticket Sales at the Botanical Garden, Posada Corazón (Aldama 9), and Camino Silvestre (Zacateros 46 and Correo 43).

This year, we have the pleasure of listening to the Tembembe Ensamble Continuo, a chamber group devoted to Hispanic baroque music and the son (a category of Mexican folk music, literally, “sound”) tradition of Mexico and Latin America. The ensemble members, Leopoldo Novoa, Enrique Barona, and Eloy Cruz, were trained in Mexico, Colombia, the United States, and France, and are all teachers of musical education in Mexico City and Cuernavaca.

The ensemble came together about sixteen years ago as a musicological research group—looking for a link between son jarocho (a regional folk music style of Mexican son from Veracruz) and other musical forms. Its work developed on two fronts: fieldwork in Veracruz, interviewing traditional musicians; and an extensive review of Hispanic musical sources of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries which had a strong influence on the evolution of son into the backbone of traditional Mexican music and a fundamental element of Mexican collective identity.

In 1998 with the intention of putting into sound the theoretical results of their investigation, the working members founded Ensamble Continuo, with the baroque music of the Spanish guitar combined with the music of jarana jarocha (guitar-shaped, fretted, eight-string instrument) and jarana huasteca (five-string instrument). Years later the group decided to honor the Tembembe River, near Cuernavaca, and incorporate this into its current name as an analogy of their multiple turns with the same flow.

The public is reminded that visitors to El Charco are not allowed to smoke or bring their own food into the Botanical Garden. We recommend wearing comfortable shoes, a hat, and sun screen—and maybe bring a cushion to sit on!

Prior to the concert, at 4:30pm, there will be a Spring Equinox ceremony at the Plaza of the Four Winds in the Botanical Garden under the direction of Alicia Mayo.


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