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Maqueque, with Jane Bunnett – Lula this Thursday

June 17th, 2014
Jun ’14
8:00 pm

Toronto Star write-up on Jane Bunnett and the girls of Maqueque… professionally trained young Cuban musicians, all women… playing at Lula Lounge in the jazz fest series, this Thursday June 19, 2014 in a double bill with the Memo Acevedo band.

Also featured in a free performance at Edwards Gardens, July 24 7pm.


Los Van Van – Toronto Free Show – Nathan Philips Square – Saturday July 12 2014 8:30pm

June 11th, 2014
Jul ’14
8:00 pm

July 12, 2014 – 8:30pm at Nathan Philips Square in downtown Toronto… also known as City Hall… come one, come all…  This concert is part of the amazing celebration week-end  ” ONE YEAR TO GO  to the PANAMERICAN GAMES 2015 countdown  www.toronto2015.org  . Check out their website for full line up of the amazing week-end and stay connected in preparation for activities leading up to next year ~

… but don’t come late;-)     This will be most likely a 1 hour stand, starting right on time.

If you were one of the 2,000 who danced to Los Van Van into the wee hours, when they were brought to town by Okokan productions in November of 2010 or December of 2006… be warned this is a different story.  Plan to get there EARLY or you will not get your full dose of The Dance Machine of Cuba! This concert is part of the bigger PanAmerican festival . There will be another concert at 9.30pm right after Los Van Van .

This is the real deal… the biggest band in Cuba for 40-plus years…

The original salsa, and still the most creative and eclectic dance music in the world comes from Cuba… and this is the best of the best… Los Van Van.

This is their first tour since the recent, untimely death of founder and leader Juan Formell… and it’s the finest selection of singers and musicians imaginable… the famous songs… the music makes the people get up in dance… in hot climates or cold ones!

JOIN THE LOS VAN VAN facebook concert event HERE . Get news about a the after party and other activities at the square . Tribute will be paid at all the concerts to the Maestro Juan Formell .

Los Van Van, “El Tren” , are rolling into Ontario for London’s SUNFEST . Los Van Van will play July 5th and Cojunto Chapotin will also be there ( FREE NO CHARGE)  and then will play Montreal’s METROPOLIS on Friday July 11th 2014 as part of Nuits d’Afrique festival ( $45 ticket)  Ticket info HERE


Cuba meets Turkey : Zeynep Ozbilen and Roberto Linares Brown Lulaworld Fri May 30 2014

May 22nd, 2014
May ’14
8:00 pm

Zeynep Ozbilen with Roberto Linares Brown

Co-presented with Cubaintoronto.com with DJ Yumaniche and dance with Vladimir

For more than a decade, Zeynep Ozbilen performed lead vocals for the first, and best-known, Latin group in Turkey — The Latin All Stars. Working with one of the most highly-respected salsa bandleaders and composers in Canada, Roberto Linares Brown. Ozbilen brings to Lula a completely new project which she describes as “Latin with Mediterranean spices.”

Line Up:

Zeynep Ozbilen, vocals

Roberto Linares Brown, piano backing vocals and musical director

Ricardo Barboza, backing Vocals

Frank Marcosm, bass

Aris Montenegro, congas

Jalidan Ruiz, drums

Vicente, percussion

John Pittman, trumpet

Christopher Butcher, trombone

Anthony Rinaldi, alto sax

Ambrioris Junior, minor percussion



May 19th, 2014

Click HERE for the complete amazing schedule !


Guaracha y Son – Thurs May 22 – Peppers at Lansdowne and Wallace

May 4th, 2014
May ’14
8:00 pm
Pepper’s Café, 189 Wallace, Toronto ON (Just west of Lansdowne between Bloor and Dupont)
  • Led by bassist Roberto Riveron with Pablosky Rosales on tres and vocals, Chendy Leon Sr. on percussion, and Jorge Maza on flute, this all-Cuban quartet performs classic son montuno, guaracha, bolero, changüíd and guajira from the 30s to 60s.No cover! Cheap drinks! Cosy atmosphere.Get ready to dance!
  • admin

    Juan Formell August 2 1942- May 1 2014 leader of Los Van Van

    May 3rd, 2014

    Los Van Van para siempre ! El Tren de la salsa !

    We mourn deeply along with Cuba and the world  the death of the tremendously talented Juan Climaco Formell Cortinas known as Juan Formell founder and leader of our beloved Los Van Van for more than 45 years. We will be forever celebrating his life and his work. With every dance to a Los Van Van song we will honor Juan Formell and hold him in our hearts . He will now be our beacon and his light in this world will  live on in each and every note.   Cubaintoronto  will be posting more in the days to come . I wanted to share a couple of photos that the lovely Marilu Lopez Fretts gave to us from the last Los Van Van concert in Toronto at the Sound Academy November 27 2010 (Okokan productions) .  I don’t want to copy and paste all the great articles out there but there was a word that El Universal’s article used that truly resonates : This emblematic orchestra ” accompagno” generations of dancers for over 45 years …  Los Van Van performed for but truly did it to “accompany” dancers from all walks of life and from all generations . We are together on this journey . We will miss you Juan Formell . We will continue to love and dance with Los Van Van  with Samuel Formell his son as band leader .  As they say in Cuba and all over the world ” Los Van Van para siempre”   Los Van Van forever .

    PHOTOS by Marilu Lopez Fretts  Los Van Van at the Sound Academy Nov 27 2010 ( Okokan productions concert)

    Thanks to our friend Erick Perdomo for the video and editing from the last Toronto concert


    FW media presents “Los Desiguales” in Toronto Friday May 16 2014

    April 25th, 2014
    May ’14
    8:00 pm

    On the heels of a very successful party with Osmany Garcia , FW media presents LOS DESIGUALES from Cuba on Friday May 16th 2014 Luna banquet hall. This is the first time that El Principe and Damian are coming to Canada so it will surely be a sell out concert . Tickets are $55 advance regular $75 VIP    tickets available at Sheimy cellular pro 1740 Jane street  ( Jane/Lawrence ) online sales   www.torontohispano.com

    La Luna banquet hall is at 30 Gordon Mackay road North York Ont .  More info 416 858 2581 info@fwmedia.ca


    Dreams come true ! Interactivo comes to Luminato opening night 2014

    April 14th, 2014
    Jun ’14
    8:00 pm

    Direct from Havana Interactivo will be performing on Luminato 2014 opening night . For many of us Cuban music lovers this is a dream come true ! Twelve young master musicians are being flown in from Cuba for this event and will be playing a FREE public concert  at 8 pm opening night June 6 2014 . This will take place at  the Festival Hub David Pecaud square King and John in downtown Toronto . Telmary and Elmer Ferrer who now live in Toronto will also be joining in.

    Here is the official release :


    Pan American Tropical Triple Bill with Emeline Michel and Jesse Cook

    Founded and led by Roberto Carcasses—whose varied collaborations as a pianist, vocalist and composer have extended from Gonzalito Rubalcaba and Chucho Valdes to Wynton Marsalis and George Benson—Interactivo is a stellar collective of Cuban musicians whose singular groove layers rap, funk, jazz and soul atop traditional Afro-Cuban rhythms. Featured performers, all of whom have shaped vibrant solo careers, include rapper Telmary, vocalists William Vivanco, Francis del Rio and Brenda Navarrete and Toronto-based guitarist Elmer Ferrer.


    Mulata “The Salsa Experience” Friday April 18 2014

    April 13th, 2014
    Apr ’14
    9:00 pm

    Mulata “The Salsa Experience”. Come and join our 100% Cuban party made for all the Casineros, Timberos and all our Cuban music lovers. Dj Bernal will be in charge to give you the best Cuban fix. Hope we will see you at Epic Lounge, 1355 St. Clair Ave. West, this next Friday 18th. Agua!!!!
    Party presented by Cuban Movement , DJ Bernal and Maria Aranibar productions
    Join Their facebook event HERE


    Salsa Klimax next party Saturday April 26 2014

    April 8th, 2014
    Apr ’14
    9:00 pm

    Always a wonderful event! Get updates and join their facebook event HERE

    The team will be back from Santiago de Cuba where they are spending a week right now in intensive workshops so…. watch out for some fresh moves and energy !

    *** Salsa Klimax Timba & Kizomba megaparty ***

    2 ROOMS + 2 SOUNDS + 2 GREAT DJ’s !!!

    *CUBAN: Salsa, Timba, Cubaton by DJ Yumaniche
    *AFRO+CARIBBEAN: Kizomba, Zouk, Semba, Afro-House and Kuduro by DJ L’AS

    * Free Semba lesson by AfroLatino at 9:45pm

    * $10 in advance and before 11pm, $13 at the door after 11pm

    What is traditional SEMBA ?   video chosen by admin to enjoy..
    Afrolatino dance company is one of the studios who started teaching Kizomba and Semba in Toronto