Live Art Presents Spanish Harlem Orchestra

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Spanish Harlem Orchestra, the nation’s premier salsa band, comes to the Townsend Center for the Performing Arts on Saturday, January 22, at 7:30 p.m.

The Spanish Harlem Orchestra, the nation’s premier salsa band, comes to the Townsend Center for the Performing Arts on Saturday, January 22, at 7:30 p.m. Led by maestro, Oscar Hernandez, the ensemble is known for its unwavering respect for the music’s rich history and a tenacious adherence to its enduring traditions. 

The performance is the Townsend’s fourth annual Live Art 2011 event and is the Spanish Harlem Orchestra’s only appearance anywhere in the South this season.

Hernandez has worked with the very best Latin music artists in the business including Ruben Blades, Tito Puente, Celia Cruz, Julio Iglesias and Ray Barreto.

The performance is part of the center’s fundraising event, which provides much-needed support to the programming and outreach mission of the Townsend.

The visit will also be a boon for area high school students: before the show Hernandez will host a free, open workshop for students at the Townsend’s main stage from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

This is a chance for students to learn from one of the very best artists in Latin music. Encourage your youngsters to bring their trumpets, trombones, saxophones and percussion instruments and be ready to play.

For a copy of the workshop music contact Robert Jennings at 678-839-4722 or rjenning@westga.edu.

The Spanish Harlem Orchestra is one of the most formidable and authentic salsa orchestras in the world.

The band released its fourth album, “Viva la Tradición,” in September. The album has been nominated for Grammy and was the band’s fourth consecutive nomination.

Its debut recording, “Un Gran Dia en el Barrio” (2002), was nominated for a Grammy as Best Salsa Album. The album won a Latin Billboard Award for Salsa Album of the Year. The band’s Grammy win came for “Across 110th Street,” which was released in 2004.

“Our music style is the original sound of New York old school ‘Salsa dura’ (heavy salsa) that was played in the early years by our pioneers,” Hernandez said.

“That sound has been lost and we want to keep it alive while educating the new generations on the true musical roots of our culture. We’ve brought back the essence of what makes this music great and are keeping the salsa spirit alive in our recordings and shows.”

Reserved seats for Saturday night’s performance are $38. Students can get in for $10. Buy tickets online at www.townsendcenter.org. The box office is staffed weekdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. On the day of the show it opens from 10 a.m. and stays open until intermission. Call 678-839-4722 for the best available seats.