March 21, 2012

The International Pepe Sánchez Trova Festival

19 - 21 March / Santiago de Cuba

This began in 1962 in homage to local Santiago de Cuba composer José (Pepe) Sánchez (1856-1918), considered the father of Cuban trova (the troubadour genre of voice, song and poetry that is usually accompanied by a guitar). Several generations of musicians from different musical trends within trova participate in this event, including exponents of more traditional trova, of “filin” (an evolution of bolero and trova), and of nueva trova (the very Cuban genre of personal commentary influenced by British, US and Brazilian popular music). Santiago de Cuba, the cradle of trova, hosts this festival, which takes the city’s streets and parks by storm, in a celebration where international musicians and singers join their Cuban counterparts. The opening of the festival on Troubadour Day, March 19th, commemorates the anniversary of the birth of Pepe Sánchez.