Friday, July 3, 2015

Antonio Sanchez and Migration, and... Periscope.

The Dimitriou's Jazz Alley has been one of my favorite places to enjoy artists from all around the globe. And when they bring Latino artists you bet I am going to be there. 

Last Tuesday, June 30th of 2015, Jazz Alley brought the four times Grammy Award winner Antonio Sanchez. Also known as the drummer who composed, and played, the entire soundtrack for the movie Birdman. You remember that movie right? The Academy Award Winner for Best Picture? So, imagine my excitement when I found out about this concert!

The night was fantastic. We (Miguel, my granddaughter Andrea, ad I) enjoyed some food, drinks, desserts, and the fabulous sounds of Antonio Sanchez on drums with his band Migration. They performed their entire 2015 album, Meridian Suite.

I was so excited that I wanted to share these sounds with some of my social media friends. That's when I went ahead and decided to use Periscope. In my head, the idea was perfect. I walked to the back of the room to have a better view, and I though: "I will stream the last song of the show with Periscope, and then I will connect again after the concert is done."

What was I thinking? It was a not very successful attempt since the room was extremely dark!

The camera phone was having a hard time focusing so, after a couple of minutes I decided to stop, and went back to my table to continue enjoying their performance.

At the end of the concert, we went to the green room. Miguel knocked at the door and.... ta-da! There they were!

Antonio was extremely nice, and kind when I asked whether it would be okay to take some pictures with him. ¡Pero claro! (Of course!) - he said.  And after those words, we switched to speak only in Spanish. That was refreshing!

He asked my granddaughter if she were studying music, and he told her that we need more Latinos representing everywhere. To which I responded: YEAH! That's one of the many reasons why I take Andrea to so many places to meet successful Latinos. She needs to see them, and know that we Latinos are so much more than what the media says we are

Once outside the restaurant, I went ahead and started using Periscope again. It was a little odd to talk to the phone without having someone answering right away. I liked it though. And I now regret not having the audacity to live stream our conversation with Antonio too. 

Maybe I will do it for the next concert. Or maybe not. It's a work in progress because after all, it's all about feeling confident in getting out of my comfort zone. 

From left to right: Miguel, Andrea, and me.

Antonio Sánchez and Migration.

Andrea and Antonio

Antonio and me. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Grammy Award Nominee, Adonis Puentes in Tacoma this Weekend!

It has become evident that Latin music is very well received in the Pacific Northwest, and so are the musicians that play this music. 

That's why it makes me incredible happy to see more, and more great Latino artists coming to our area to delight us with their voices, and music; like  Grammy Award Nominee Adonis Puentes that will be performing at the Rialto Theater in Tacoma this coming Friday, January 30th at 7:30 p.m. 

Now, here are some things that you need to know about Adonis Puentes:

Adonis was born in 1974 in Artemisa, Cuba. At the eage of six, he was playing with his twin brother Alex in a cildren's guitar ensemble. At 14, Adonis was singing and writing original songs, music that can be heard in his latest album Sabor a Café. 

Puentes has lived in Victoria, B.C., since 1998, but Sabor a Café  is Cuban through and through. One of the songs, Anjojos del Firmamento, even features the famed Cuban band, Septeto Nacional de Cuba Ignacio Piñeiro.

Adonis has been nominated for a Juno Award with his brother, and garnered a Grammy award nomination for his lead vocalist work with the nine-piece, L.A.-based Mongorama. He has performed at festivals around the world from South by Southwest in Austin, Texas to Java Jazz in Jakarta, Indonesia.

One of his performances that really caught my attention was the one at Lincoln Center where he shared the stage with Latin music luminaries Larry Harlow and Ruben Blades before 24,000 New York fans. This is huge! 

I have now great news for you. When you buy your tickets you can use the promo code UTOPIA15 and you will get a 15% off of A & B level tickets! Here are all the options for you to get your tickets:

1.)    Buy tickets online at  
2.)    Call the box office (253.591.5894) and purchase by phone
3.)    When purchasing tickets at the door

Let's keep supporting the arts, and the amazing artists that come to our area!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

On the Boards Brings CINEASTAS, A Latino Play to Seattle! January 29th - 31st (Sponsored)

It's 2015, and I am super excited  to see that On the Boards is bringing another play by a Latino writer to Seattle! The play this year is "Cineastas" by Mariano Pensotti.

First, let's remember a little about the Latino plays that On the Boards has brought to Seattle in the past two years. 

The first one I went to see was "Amarillo" by Teatro Línea de Sombra. Amarillo is a thought provoking play around the subject of immigration, and the reality of what happens when someone undertakes the dangerous journey between the two countries. 

The second play was "El Año en que Nací (The Year I Was Born)" by Lola Arias. Another amazing production about eleven Chileans born during the reign of Pinochet where they wonder about their parents' lives and start reconstructing them using letters, old clothes, hazy memories, and music, in their attempt to better understand their past, their present, and their future. 

This year, is Cineastas turn to make us wonder about these two, simple, yet important questions: Does art influence life? Or is it the other way around?

"Cineastas resulted from a series of interviews conducted by Pensotti with the many filmmakers working in the booming Buenos Aires film scene. Especially curious about how
personal circumstances affected their work and vice versa, Pensotti expanded the piece into
a completely fictionalized account where reality and fiction merge completely.

Pensotti ingeniously adapts cinematic techniques – voice-over, fades, panoramic long takes – for the stage, resulting in an intricate portrait of a city, its inhabitants, and a specific epoch. Pensotti ingeniously adapts cinematic techniques – voice-over, fades, panoramic long takes – for the stage, resulting in an intricate portrait of a city, its inhabitants, and a specific epoch." - On the Boards Press Release. 

So, if you are into theater, and film, this is a play that you need to see, and fortunately, I have a fantastic deal for you, my readers! 

OtB and Patty’s Utopia would like to offer a 2 for 1 ticket offer for Mariano Pensotti’s Cineastas. Tickets are $23 general admission and $25 week of show. Offer good as long as tickets are available. To redeem the ticket offer, call the OtB box office at 206.217.9888, Tuesday through Friday from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and mention “Patty’s Utopia.” 

I know that many of you will not pass this opportunity to support great theater, and Latino artists! 

About the writer:
Mariano Pensotti is a director, writer, and filmmaker based in Argentina. He is becoming known worldwide for his singular set design, site-specific performances, beautiful and honest writing, and depictions of the “lost generation” in South America. Pensotti last visited OtB with 2012’s El pasado es un animal grotesco

Preview of Cineastas.