Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Lamento Borincano

One of the new songs we're working on this season is a Puerto Rican classic, "Lamento Borincano" by Rafaél Hernández (1892-1965), arranged by Francisco Reneir Abad. Hernández was a prolific Puerto Rican composer, with over 3,000 songs, but the Lamento is the most famous.

"It depicts the struggles of a Puerto Rican jibaro [peasant] to survive; an archetypical hero that the Puerto Rican people immediately and always identified with closely. The identification with this poor jibaro, despondent from his inability to sell his goods in the town’s marketplace can be seen as a representation of Puerto Rico’s own struggle for national identity and self-reliance in the face of a colonial history."
--from Music of Puerto Rico

Chicago Bronze is excited to present this work, with its percussive rhythms as well as its history and significance to Puerto Rico. Puerto Rico has a relatively large handbell community; we should be so lucky to visit the island some day and share their musical heritage.

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