Christian Noguera  – Music – Group 2, Round 2 Awardee

A live presentation & archival recording of folkloric music, to preserve these cultural practices.

Impact Statement

Moving forward with this project would pay homage to the cultural keepers of folkloric traditions in Philadelphia, which have often been an afterthought by many large/mainstream institutions. By being able to fully bring this project’s vision to life, the elders in particular would be elevated for their cultural wisdom and paired with emerging musicians to archive these historical practices. This would help create a more formal pipeline for these elders and emerging artists to collaborate and share in an intergenerational public art space.

Generous support from ARTisPHL Round 1 has already allowed us to begin planning and rehearsing a few of the 22 “toques” that we plan to present. By moving through this process from idea to now thinking through impact and engagement, we are thoughtfully developing project partners and collaborators. One of the key project partners will be TIMBALONA percussion ensemble. As a Co-founder of TIMBALONA, we are collectively building a body of work that focuses on cultural preservation of folkloric music. Thus one of the project’s main collaborator’s is Andrés Cisneros, also Co-founder of TIMBALONA, as well as a professional musician and Teaching Artist from Caracas, Venezuela. We are also collaborating with Kenneth ‘Skip’ or ‘Brinquito’ Burney, a renowned ritual musician and elder within this artistic practice. We are lucky to have him as part of the Philadelphia folkloric community, as he is helping to mentor the next generation of folkloric percussionists. These are the types of collaborators we will continue to reach out to: a combination of elders who have much to teach but have been overlooked, as well as emerging artists who have great potential to continue learning this craft.

This project focuses on a niche community–the folkloric Latin American music community–which includes artists/musicians/performers, world music aficionados, and cultural workers. This community is vibrant, and this project would add to celebrating this community and creating space for us to gather, while intentionally documenting this cultural art form.

Additional funding would allow us to expand our impact and engagement by supporting more performers who could be hired, and in turn expand the repertoire of songs that could be recorded and preserved digitally. Greater support would also assist in further establishing formal collaboration with community partners we are already in conversation with to produce this multigenerational and multicultural project.

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