In praise of her album Sonocardiogram, Daymé Arocena was described as the perfect combination of Aretha Franklin and Celia Cruz. The Cuban singer, songwriter and choir director's star has risen with breathtaking speed. Her music contains both rich and diverse Cuban traditions, such as santeria and rumba, and traditional elements of Western classical music. No one can resist her explosive energy and magical personality, while she transmits her infectious smile to every listener.
Even as a young girl, Arocena's talent stood out. She was born in a Havana community defined by Santeria, a Cuban religion that has helped guide her on her path. At the age of eight, she was already performing as a professional musician and dancer. She played a variety of instruments, before eventually deciding to become a singer. Arocena was 11 years old when she joined the big band Los Primos as a vocal soloist, and also won the prestigious Marti y el Arte award at the same age. Soon after, Wy...nton Marsalis heard her sing, and spoke highly of her improvisational performance skills. During her student years, she formed Alami, a group full of female musicians. After Arocena completed a degree as a choir leader, the Cuban Ministry of Culture invited Alami to perform at the Jazz Plaza Festival in Havana. Their performance stunned the Canadian clarinettist Jane Bunnett, a guest at the festival, who invited Arocena to perform with her in Toronto, before they also collaborated on the 2014 Cuban jazz record, Jane Bunnett & Maqueque. One year later, Arocena recorded her first solo album, Nueva Era. Her interest in electronic music typifies her eclectic range of interests, though she has always remained faithful to her Afro-Cuban roots.
Presented by: Müpa Budapest
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