Celebrating life with a focus on Hispanic and Latino artists with the theme of “Arts For Every Season,” the Columbia Festival of the Arts spring events are running weekends April 8–24.
In addition to a free Family Fiesta afternoon indoor celebration of Latin-inspired music, food, artists, vendors, mini-dance lectures, Cha Cha lessons and a Taste of Latin America by Whole Foods, the festival offers nine days of uninterrupted entertainment and culture.
Key performances include a doubleheader high-energy concert featuring Grammy Award-winning band La Santa Cecilia and another top group, Las Cafeteras, which was voted Best Latin Alternative Band in 2013 by LA Weekly. Also, classical Spanish guitarist Mark Edwards is back by popular demand, as are a selection of powerful lectures on Imagining Post-Revolutionary Mexico and Cuba’s Cinematic Revolution.
Spring film selections include Julie Taymor’s “Frida,” the award-winning “East Side Sushi” and the 2nd Annual Maryland Student Film Festival. There’s an abundance of food and dancing with a Salsa Night led by Eileen Torres, plus Poetry and Paella with actor/musicians Jorge Acosta and Jennyfur Anaya, who bring Spanish language poetry and food for an evening of rich language and complex tastes.
For more information and/or to purchase tickets, visit www.ColumbiaFestival.org. A complete list of each event is included below.
Film: Julie Taymor’s “Frida”
Starring Salma Hayek, Alfred Molina, Geoffrey Rush, Ashley Judd, Antonio Banderas, Roger Rees and Edward Norton
The Academy Award-winning American biopic drama film depicts the professional and private life of surrealist Mexican painter Frida Kahlo.
Friday, April 8, 7:30–9:30 p.m. (talk-back to follow), $12. Venue TBD.
Lecture: Cuba’s Cinematic Revolution
By Eyda Merediz
Explore the cinematic journey of the Cuban revolution as socialist utopia and the development of Cuban cinematic culture that took place during the mid-20th century.
Saturday, April 9, 7–8:30 p.m. Pay what you can. Venue TBD.
Staged Reading: Casa Blue, the last moments in the life of Frida Kahlo
By Todd Olson, Karen Garcia and Jeremy Childs
This play celebrates the most famous painter to come from Mexico, Frida Kahlo, which Creative Loafing called “Exciting … a formidable work of imagination.”
Sunday, April 10, 4–6:30 p.m. (talk-back to follow), $12. Oliver’s Carriage House.
Salsa Night with Eileen Torres
Lecture, food and dancing
A decade-by-decade exploration of the “Origins and Development of Salsa,” intermission aperitivos (appetizers), followed by a one-hour Salsa dance instruction.
Friday, April 15, 7–9:30 p.m., $35 (includes food). Historic Oakland.
Free Family Fiesta
Indoor Celebration with Cha-Cha, Salsa and a Taste of Latin America
Bring the whole family.
Saturday, April 16, 3–6 p.m. Free. Wilde Lake High School Main Street/Jim Rouse Theatre.
Dos por Uno (2 for 1): Las Cafeteras and Grammy-winning La Santa Cecilia
Live bands, featuring special intermission food by Whole Foods
Las Cafeteras creates a vibrant musical fusion with a unique East L.A. sound and a community-focused political message. 6–7:30 p.m.
Grammy-award winning La Santa Cecilia exemplifies the modern-day creative hybrid of Latin culture, rock and world music.
Saturday, April 16, 8:30–10 p.m., $45 (includes both shows and food). Jim Rouse Theatre.
Mark Edwards, classical Spanish guitar
Following a performance at last year’s Spring Festival, Mark Edwards is back by popular demand, this time presenting a program of Spanish masters.
Sunday, April 17, 4–5:30 p.m., $18. Oliver’s Carriage House.
Lecture: Imagining Post-Revolutionary Mexico: Visual Art and Political Commitment in the 1930s and 1940s
Ryan Long, associate professor of Spanish, University of Maryland, discusses a range of visual artists in the decades following the Mexican Revolution.
Friday, April 22, 7–8:30 p.m., pay what you can. Slayton House Studio, Wilde Lake Village Center
2nd Annual Maryland Student Film Festival (in partnership with Howard Community College)
In cooperation with Howard County Public Schools, Howard Community College will showcase a variety of local and regional student films.
Saturday, April 23, 3–6 p.m., pay what you can. Monteabaro Recital Hall, Howard Community College.
Film: “East Side Sushi”
Winner of 12 film festival awards, including two Jury Awards for Best Feature and Best Screenplay
A single Latina mom fights discrimination while pursuing her dream to become a sushi chef.
Saturday, April 23, 7–9:30 p.m. (includes talk-back), $12. Monteabaro Recital Hall, Howard Community College.
Poetry and Paella: Spanish Poems and Aperitivos
Featuring actor/musicians Jorge Acosta and Jennyfur Anaya
Explore the deliciousness of tastes and words from Chile to Cuba to Cordoba.
Sunday, April 24, 4–5:30 p.m., $25 (includes food). Oliver’s Carriage House.