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The Signature Series at Berklee Presents Colombian Singer Totó la Momposina on November 5
(Published: October 14, 2015)

The Signature Series at Berklee continues on November 5 with Totó la Momposina Meets Berklee, featuring the Colombian singer, dancer, and teacher. She embodies the mingling of Colombia's African, Indigenous Indian and Spanish cultures that make a unique musical tradition. La Momposina will perform her songbook with a large student ensemble, playing arrangements by contemporary writing and production majors.

Totó la Momposina Meets Berklee takes place Thursday, November 5, 8:00 p.m., at the Berklee Performance Center, 136 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston. Reserved seating tickets are available for $8-$16 at the BPC box office or berklee.edu/bpc. The venue is wheelchair accessible. For more information, call 617-747-2261.

Student groups open the show, performing several of la Momposina's songs. La Momposina will take the stage joined by her son and musical director Marco Vinicio Oyaga on the alegre drum, and special guest, Colombian singer-songwriter, alumna trustee Monica Giraldo, who made the initial connection between Berklee and la Momposina.

"My relationship with Totó has been built through the years, based on my love and respect for her music. This is what inspired me to write the song ‘Así lo canto yo,' about her journey as a cantadora (troubadour) and the Colombian musical tradition she represents," said Giraldo. "This music is a vital piece of Colombia's culture and her voice and talent will be an inspiration for the Berklee community."

The concert is produced by Grammy-winning bass professor Oscar Stagnaro and directed by Matthew Nicholl, chair of the Contemporary Writing and Production Department and executive director of the Mediterranean Music Institute. Colombian bassist Esther Rojas is the student musical director and coordinator.

Totó la Momposina's entire life has been dedicated to representing the music of Colombia's Caribbean coastline. As a child, the conflict of La Violencia forced her family to flee their home and move to Bogotá. La Momposina emerged as a promising singer in the 1950s and formed her own band in the 1960s. She began touring internationally a decade later and cemented her global fame in the 1990s with a WOMAD tour across three continents, the release of La Candela Viva, and the many international shows and recordings that followed.

La Momposina continues to work tirelessly to promote the music of her homeland, driven by passion and the simple joy of performance. She has received the Latin Recording Academy's Lifetime Achievement Award and the WOMEX Lifetime Achievement Award. Her latest album,Tambolero, is a re-creation of La Candela Viva.

Mónica Giraldo walks two paths: one takes her deeper into the heart of Colombian music's traditional rhythms, and the other leads away, following melodies and harmonies from around the world. Giraldo was nominated for Best New Artist at the 2008 Latin Grammy Awards after releasing two independent albums - Muy Cerca, and Todo da Vueltas. Her latest album is 2014's Que Venga la Vida. In addition to her Berklee degree, Giraldo has an architecture degree from Universidad de los Andes, in Bogotá.

More Information: http://www.berklee.edu.com/news

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