Salsa Warm Up Class with Susana Arenas Pedroso at 7:30pm
Gladys “Bobi” Céspedes has been at the forefront of representing and promoting Cuban music in the United States for over 40 years. A vocalist, band leader and educator, Bobi first won acclaim as co-director and lead singer for the band, Conjunto Céspedes. With them she toured internationally and recorded 4 albums, including Una Sola Casa and Vivito Y Coleando which won the National Association of Independent Records Distribution (NAIRD) INDIE Award for best Latin Recording in 1994 and 1996. Since 2003 Bobi has led her own band, and recorded two albums Rezos on Six Degree Records, and Patakin on VL Sounds.
Bobi’s music integrates folkloric and modern elements in an authentic and distinctive sound. Her dynamic performances lead you on a journey from Afro Cuban chants sung a cappella, to modern Cuban salsa that makes dancing irresistible. Along the way she shares her narratives of family life and love, and the wisdom of Afro Cuban fables. Always present is her chambo—that vibrant Cuban soul--resilient in its ability to create music, and dance through joy and pain.
Bobi Céspedes carries unbroken the cord of tradition and inspiration which joins the past with the present. An offspring of a large Cuban musical family that kept alive African beliefs and practices, she gives a modern voice to the ancestors, providing fresh ways for contemporary audiences to be touched by Cuban music. “Ms Cespedes’ voice is supreme: powerful, full of strength, even when she whispers…” (Descarga.com). In the rich field of Cuban music, Bobi Céspedes stands out as a gem and can rightfully be considered one of our national cultural treasures.
Bobi Céspedes (Director, lead singer, chekeré)
Marco Diaz (Piano, trumpet, vocals)
Saul Sierra-Alonso (Bass, vocals)
Jose Roberto Hernández (Guitar, vocals)
Elizabeth (Lichi) Fuentes (Vocals, chekeré, guiro)
Morris Amaya (Trumpet)
John Santos (congas)
Javier Navarette (bongos)
Susana Arenas Pedroso is an internationally recognized Cuban Folkloric and popular dancer. Born and raised in Havana, Cuba, Ms Pedroso began her career in dance at age twelve, studying at La Casa de Cultura de Matanzas and at Cojunto Folklorico Nacional in Havana. She danced professionally for seventeen years in Cuba with popular, folkloric and theatrical performing groups, including Tierra Virgen, Alafia Ire, Oche Olorun, Oriki, Clave y Guaguancó, Oba Wemilere, Rumberos de Cuba, and Raíces Profundas. Since her arrival in the United States in 1998, Ms Pedroso has performed and choreographed numerous pieces that have been exhibited throughout the United States, Mexico, Cuba and Hong Kong with companies such as Omo Ache, Omo Oddara, Ban Rarra, Ire Ile, Alayo Dance Company, Las Que Son Son and Obini Ashe.