Plaza Cuba Logo
Home
About Us
Travel to Cuba
Culture in Cuba
MUSIC & ARTS
BASEBALL MANIA
Guide to Havana
Cuban music DVDs
Photo Galleries
Bay Area Events
Lnks
Contact Us
Get On Our Email List

sidebar

Culture in Cuba – Music & Arts Festivals

Links to our Favorite Annual Events
LOW BUDGET FILM FESTIVAL- GIBARA – April
“CUBADISCO” MUSIC FAIR – MAY
WEMILERE - FESTIVAL OF AFRICAN ROOTS – MAY
FIESTA DEL FUEGO - SANTIAGO – JULY
“CUBADANZA” MODERN DANCE WORKSHOP – AUGUST
MATAMOROS SON FESTIVAL - SANTIAGO – OCTOBER
FIESTA DEL TAMBOR – OCTOBER
NEW LATIN AMERICAN FILM FESTIVAL – DECEMBER
HAVANA JAZZ FESTIVAL – DECEMBER


February

INTERNATIONAL BOOK FAIR
Organizer:  Cuban Institute of Books
Venues: San Carlos de la Cabaña Fortress, Havana and 40 other cities in Cuba

One of Cuba’s main cultural events, the Book Fair is attended by tens of thousands of people who participate in book launchings by foreign and Cuban publishing houses, poetry readings, concerts and children’s events.
Website: www.cubaliteraria.cu


March

FESTIVAL OF ELECTRO-ACOUSTIC MUSIC “SPRING IN HAVANA”
Organizer: National Center of Concert Music and the Institute of Cuban Music
Venue: Centro Histórico, National Museum of Fine Arts and the Higher Arts Institute (el ISA), Havana

Composers, musicians and sound engineers participate in concerts and conferences with other prestigious professionals.
E-mail: inme@cubarte.cult.cu

Pepe Sanchez record cover“PEPE SANCHEZ¨ INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL OF TROVA
Organizer: Institute of Cuban Music with Eliades Ochoa Bustamante
Venues: Casa de la Trova and ¨Dolores¨ Concert Hall, Santiago de Cuba.

Different generations of Trova singers come together to share the rich history of Santiago’s Trova movement. A variety of performances, conferences and workshops examine genres including traditional trova, filin and nueva trova and there is a celebration of the life of Jose “Pepe” Sanchez (1856 – 1918), one of Cuba’s most important Trova singers.
E-mail: cpmusica@cultstgo.cult.cu
Web site: www.cultstgo.cult.cu

Ballet14th INTERNATIONAL MEETING OF BALLET ACADEMIES / COMPETITION FOR BALLET STUDENTS
Organizer: National Center for Artistic Teaching
Venues: The National Ballet School and Grand Theatre, Havana

Master classes and conferences focus on the development of ballet in Cuba and demonstrate Cuba’s methodology for teaching ballet. Also featured are a variety of performances by participating international dance academies and the International Student Ballet Contest.
E-mail: cneart@cubarte.cult.cu
Website: www.cubarte.cult.cu

UNEAC logo“DANZON HABANA” FESTIVAL AND CONTEST
Organizer: Association (Union) of Writers and Artists (UNEAC)
Venues: Theaters in Havana and “EL Bosque¨ Hotel

Musicologists, dancers, bands and Danzon lovers from all over the world come together to celebrate this influential genre of music and dance from the early 1900s. Danzon evolved from the French-Haitian contradanza, brought to Cuba by Haitians fleeing the revolution of the late 1700s. The dance style has formal salon characteristics and was heavily influenced by European classical orchestration and the waltz.
E-mail: loyola@cubarte.cult.cu; promoven@uneac.co.cu
Website: www.uneac.org.cu


April

“OLGA ALONSO” THEATER FESTIVAL
Organizer: National Council of Casas de Cultura
Venue: Fomento, in Sancti Spìritus

This exciting festival for amateur theatre artists has contributed to the reputation of this area as producing some of the best theatrical works in all of Cuba.
E-mail: gartiles@cncc.cult.cu

INTERNATIONAL LOW BUDGET FILM FESTIVAL 
Organizer: Cuban Institute of Cinematographic Art and Industry (ICAIC)
Venues: Various venues in Gibara, Holguín province

The remote town of Gibara is an unusual yet charming stage for this up-and-coming film festival. The goal is to celebrate low budget films from all over the world, fiercely defending cinema made with modest resources and therefore not bound to the rules of commercial filmmaking. Seminars, exhibitions and conferences examine low budget cinema from aesthetic, artistic and technological perspectives.
E-mail:  festivalcinepobre@icaic.cu
Website: www.cubacine.cu/cinepobre, www.festivalcinepobre.org

Back to top

INTERNATIONAL WORKSHOP IN PUPPET THEATER
Organizer: Provincial Council of Performing Arts, Matanzas
Venues: Theaters, Matanzas

Matanzas opens its doors so a puppet can welcome you with the reflexive and entertaining spirit that this art expression offers to all puppet-loving people. The City of Matanzas is a port city on a bay and is the birthplace of many Afro-Cuban traditions.

CorhabanaCORHABANA – INTERNATIONAL CHOIR FESTIVAL
Organizer: Institute of Cuban Music
Venues: Amadeo Roldan, Gran Theater and San Francisco de Asis Concert Hall, Havana.

Cuba’s main choirs and musical academies host choral groups from all over the world. Groups have an opportunity to perform in the main theatres and concert halls in Havana and to share musical and cultural experiences with singers from around the world.
E-mail: coronac@cubarte.cult.cu, cnmc@cubarte.cult.cu


May

Romerias del Mayo“ROMERÍAS DE MAYO” INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL OF YOUNG ARTISTS
Organizer: “Hermanos Saíz” Association
Venues: Various in Holguín (Eastern Cuba)

Young intellectuals, artists and cultural promoters unite for meetings and presentations focusing on artistic creation as a source of spiritual enrichment. This event attracts young researchers, writers, visual artists, playwrights, musicians and dancers interested in socially conscious artistic expression.
E-mail: cibr@baibrama.cult.cu
Website: www.baibrama.cult.cu, www.romeriasdemayo.cult.cu/

Guitar FestivalGuitar FestivalINTERNATIONAL GUITAR FESTIVAL
Organizer: Institute of Cuban Music
Venue: Amadeo Roldan Theater, Havana

This festival features concerts, conferences, master classes and exhibitions on a variety of musical styles featuring the guitar. Founded by internationally acclaimed guitarist, composer and conductor Leo Brouwer, the festival has welcomed many distinguished guitarists from all over the world.
E-mail: cnmc13@cubarte.cult.cu

CUBADISCO – INTERNATIONAL MUSIC FAIR
CubaDiscoOrganizer: Institute of Cuban Music
Venues: Pabellon Cuba, Amadeo Roldan Theater, the Garden of the Institute of Music, ExpoCuba, Salon Rosado de la Tropical and others in Havana

CUBADISCO is devoted to the music and poetry of Africa and the African diaspora. Workshops and discussions create an environment for reflection for musicians, artists, musicologists and music executives on Cuban and world music and the industry. Awards are given for best CD and DVD Cuban music recordings on CD and DVD , and there is more than a week of festivities that include music sales at deep discounts and performances of Cuba’s greatest music and dance groups at multiple venues. There may be related events scheduled just before or after Cubadisco. This is a great time to be in Havana and is one of the favorite events of the year.
E-mail: cubadisco@icm.cu
Website: www.cubadisco.soycubano.com
Click here to read more about CubaDisco 2007

Back to top

WEMILERE” FESTIVAL OF AFRICAN ROOTS“WEMILERE” FESTIVAL OF AFRICAN ROOTS
Organizer: Provincial/Municipal Management Offices of Culture in Guanabacoa
Venue: Guanabacoa, Havana

Guanabacoa is a Havana neighborhood known for its rich history of Afro-Cuban folkloric tradition. Wemilere offers artistic programs, performances with Cuban folklore and rumba groups from all over the island, academic investigation, cultural meetings and tours to places of historic interest.
E-mail: dmcgbcoa@cubarte.cult.cu

Back to top

INTERNATIONAL POETRY FESTIVAL - HAVANA
Organizer: Association (Union) of Writers and Artists of Cuba (UNEAC)
Venues: San Francisco de Asís´s Concert Hall and other sites in Havana.

Poets from all over the world meet for cultural exchange and to promote new works. The “World Meeting of Poets for Peace and in Defense of Humanity” features concerts, plays, films and poetry readings in public spaces, work places and universities.
E-mail: cubapoesia@uneac.co.cu, proyectosurcuba@uneac.co.cu
Web: www.uneac.org.cu

“CUBANIMA” YOUTH FILM WORKSHOP
Organizer: Cuban Institute for Cinematographic Art and Industry (ICAIC)
Venues: Havana and other provinces

This is a meeting for young people to exchange ideas on artistic genres like cartoon animation, fiction and documentary films. Participants make their own cartoons using digital technology and animation.
E-mail: festival@animados.icaic.cu, cubanima@animados.icaic.cu
Website: www.cubacine.cu
www.cubacine.cu/dibujosanimados/festival/index.html


June

FESTIVAL “THE SPANISH IMPRINT”
Organizer: Havana’s Grand Theatre and the National Ballet of Cuba
Venue: Grand Theatre, Havana

Lectures, meeting and performances focus on examining elements of Spanish cultural heritage that have influenced Cuban artistic expression. Cuban and Spanish artists participate in events relating to dance, music, visual arts, literature and cinema.
E-mail: bnc@cubarte.cult.cu
Website: www.balletcuba.cult.cu

INTERNATIONAL CUBAN MUSIC FESTVAL – “VARADERO”
Organizer: Institute of Cuban Music with Juan Formell
Venue: Various in Varadero

Respected Cuban musicians gather together to perform and discuss topics relating to the development, evolution and preservation of Cuban music. The festival is attended by Cuban and foreign audiences.
E-mail: alexisv@paradis.artex.cu

INTERNATIONAL “BOLEROS DE ORO” FESTIVAL
Organizer: Association of Writers and Artists (UNEAC)
Venues: Various Theaters and nightclubs in Havana

Boleros de Oro is the oldest and most prestigious boleros event in the western hemisphere. Cuban and foreign singers share the stages of some of Havana’s grand theaters and famous nightclubs in celebration of this popular singing style.
E-mail: loyola@cubarte.cult.cu; promoven@uneac.co.cu
Website: www.uneac.org.cu

CUCALAMBEANA WEEK / DECIMA FESTIVAL
Organizer: Spanish American Center of Décima and Improvised Verse, and Las Tunas Cultural Director’s Office
Venue: El Cornito, Las Tunas

A rural fiesta inspired by poet Juan Cristóbal Nápoles Fajardo (El Cucalambé), attracts poets, musicians, improvisers, artists, researchers and writers for in discussions on the identity of rural culture in Cuba and a review of themes such as Décima (ten-line verses) and improvised verses within Spanish-American culture.
E-mail: cdecima@tunet.cult.cu, dpclt@tunet.cult.cu
Website: www.tunet.cult.cu


July

“FIESTA DEL FUEGO” SANTIAGO DE CUBA’S CARIBBEAN FESTIVAL
Venues: Santiago de Cuba and Guantánamo provinces
Santiago’s biggest festival celebrates with activities that focus on the preservation, development and dissemination of Caribbean cultural diversity. This colorful Festival features a music and dance performances, religious rituals, workshops and exhibits reflecting the Afro-Cuban folkloric traditions of the eastern part of the island.
E-mail: caribe@cultstgo.cult.cu
Website: www.casadelcaribe.cult.cu

Back to top


August

INTERNATIONAL HIP HOP FESTIVAL
Organizer:  National Council of “Casas de Cultura” in Cuba
Venues: Various venues in Havana

Cuban rap groups perform with an array of international guests. Discussions focus on hip hop’s influence and some of the more controversial aspects of Cuban life that are being addressed by this relatively new art form. The festival includes dance, graffiti art and film.
E-mail: gartiles@cncc.cult.cu

Back to top

“CUBADANZA” – INTERNATIONAL MODERN DANCE WORKSHOP
Organizer: National Council of Performing Arts
Venue: “Danza Contemporanea,” Cuba’s National Theatre

The Contemporary Dance Company of Cuba holds classes for Cuban and international students, with workshops that focus on Cuban modern dance techniques, including tecnica Cubana, a highly evolved hybrid of ballet, modern and Afro-Cuban folkloric movements.
Website: www.havana-cultura.com/en/cuban-ballet/danza-contemporanea-de-cuba/cuban-life.html

Back to top

September

JAM SESSION FESTIVAL
Organizer: Institute of Cuban Music and Chucho Valdés
Venues: Various venuesin Varadero

This festival of jazz improvisation features some of the most important and influential Cuban jazz musicians and brilliant musicians from other genres, like son and timba. This is a real descarga all over Varadero with jam sessions on different stages throughout the beautiful beach town.
E-mail: alexisv@icm.cu
Website: www.jazz.soycubano.com

Back to top


October

INTERNATIONAL MATAMOROS SON FESTIVAL
Organizer: Institute of Cuban Music with Adalberto Alvarez
Venues: Heredia Theater and Casa de la Trova, Santiago de Cuba

Concerts, workshops, exhibits and meetings focus on the history and development of son and its place as a permanent part of Cuban culture. Adalberto Alvarez presides, bringing together the greatest and most famous artists of popular and traditional Cuban music. The Festival features a dance competitions in son, cha-cha-cha, mambo and salsa.
E-mail: cpm@cultstgo.cult.cu
Website: www.cultstgo.cult.cu

Back to top

INTERNATIONAL FILM PRODUCTION WORKSHOP
Organizer: Association of Writers and Artists, (UNEAC) and the Cuban Institute of Cinematographic Art and Industry (ICAIC)
Venue: Cinemateque of Cuba and Charlie Chaplin Cinema, Havana

Workshop for people interested in knowing about the main aspects of film production for both professionals and laypeople.
Email: edmival@cubarte.cult.cu
Website: www.uneac.org.cu, www.cubacine.cu

FIESTA DEL TAMBOR – "CELEBRATION OF THE DRUM"
Organizer: Institute of Cuban Music and Antonio María Romeu Provincial Center of Music
Venues: Teatro América and the Higher Institute for the Arts (el ISA), Havana

Prestigious Cuban and foreign percussionists participate in performances and discussions aimed at exchanging information on various percussion styles and displaying Cuba’s extraordinary level of achievement in percussion arts. The founder and main organizer of events is Giraldo Piloto, drumset player and director of popular music group Klimax.
E-mail: romeo@cubarte.cult.cu

Back to top

INTERNATIONAL BALLET FESTIVAL OF HAVANA
Organizer: Ministry of Culture and the Ballet Nacional de CUBA with Alicia Alonso
Venue: “Gran Teatro” of Havana

This international gathering is one of the oldest and most prestigious events in the dance world. The Cuban Ballet demonstrates the artistic and technical ability that has given rise to their worldwide recognition as one of the great ballet institutions.
E-mail: bnc@cubarte.cult.cu
Website: www.balletcuba.cult.cu

Back to top


November

AUTHOR´S WEEK
Organizer: Casa de las Americas
Venue: Casa de las Americas

This international annual meeting features discussions and presentations of books and films. It is well attended by prestigious personalities in Latin-American literature.
E-mail: cil@casa.cult.cu
Web site: www.casadelasamericas.org

“JO JAZZ” MUSIC COMPETITION FOR YOUNG JAZZ PLAYERS
Organizer: Institute of Cuban Music
Venues: “Amadeo Roldán” Theater and other venues in Havana

Short for joven jazz—or young jazz—this competition and music course for jazz musicians under age 30, focuses on experimentation and creation of individual style. The competition promotes young Cuban talent and demonstrates the contribution of Cuban musicians to jazz. Winners have the opportunity to cut an album with revered pianist Chucho Valdes.
E-mail: alexis@icm.cu

Back to top

“CUBADANZÓN” FESTIVAL
Organizer: Institute of Cuban Music and the Matanzas Provincial Cutural Center
Venues: Sauto Theater and other venues, Matanzas

Events, performances, contests and classes focus on the importance of Danzón in Mantanzas’ rich musical history. Attended by musicians and dancers from all over the world, the program seeks to investigate and preserve this important tradition.
E-mail: cpmusica@enet.cu


December

FIESTA “GUANTANAMERA”
Organizer: Guantanamo´s Provincial Cultural Center
Venue: “Guaso” Theater, Guantanamo

This dynamic festival features concerts, dance performances, fairs and exhibits that explore the region’s particular music and dance styles and cultural influences, including Changüi, Tumba Francesa, Gaga, and Vodu, and also Guantanamo’s Haitian folkloric traditions.
E-mail: guantanamera@gtmo.cult.cu
Website: www.gtmo.cult.cu

Back to top


INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL OF NEW LATIN-AMERICAN CINEMA

Organizer: Cuban Institute of Cinematographic Art and Industry (ICAIC),  Ministry of Culture and the Casa del Festival
Venues: Various Cinemas in Havana and throughout Cuba

Havana’s International Film Festival has gained respect as one of the most prestigious film festivals in the world. The festival promotes works that contribute to the enrichment and reaffirmation of Latin American and Caribbean cultural identity. International films, contests for the best scripts and posters, and seminars with themes like Cinema and New Technologies, Latin Cinema in the U.S., and the Audiovisual World of the Latin-American Child are featured.
E-mail: presidenciafestival@icaic.cu
Website: www.habanafilmfestival.com

Back to top

Chucho - Jazz FestivalINTERNATIONAL JAZZ FESTIVAL (“JAZZ PLAZA”)
Organizer: Institute of Cuban Music and National Center for Concert Music
Venues: Amadeo Roldan and Karl Marx Theaters, Teatro Mella, Casa de la Cultura de Plaza, The Jazz Café and La Zorra y El Cuervo Jazz Club, Havana

Havana’s International Jazz Festival started in 1978, when Bobby Carcasses and other important Cuban Jazz musicians presented their first jazz concert at the Casa de la Cultura de Plaza in Vedado. It was so successful that a jazz festival was organized the following year featuring pianist Chucho Valdés, who later became the festival organizer. The origin of the name of the festival comes from its birth in this open-air venue Casa de la Cultura de Plaza, which remains one of the festival’s most important venues.
E-mail: alexisv@icm.cu
Website: www.festivaljazzplaza.icm.cu

Back to top

FIART – INTERNATIONAL ARTS AND CRAFTS FAIR
Organizer: Cuban Center of Cultural Assets
Venue: PABEXPO, Havana

This fair features exhibits and workshops and includes both wholesale and retails sales. A variety of cultures are represented with the focus on showing the diversity and cultural identity of each place of origin of art and craft pieces. Renowned experts hold discussions on the development and marketing. This festival has been recognized by many international organizations, including the World Organization of Intellectual Property (OMPI) and UNESCO World Heritage Organization.
E-mail: fcbc@fcbc.cult.cu

  ©2007 PlazaCuba All Rights Reserved
spacer spacer