The Unexpected Sounds of Trovarroco

by Irina Echarry, photos: Caridad

Trovarroco at the Casa del ALBA

HAVANA TIMES, April 10 — Have you ever heard of Irish baroque mixed with traditional Cuban music?  Can you imagine “sucu sucu” (originating from Cuba’s Isla de la Juventud) fused with “changui,” from the island’s east?

Rachid Lopez directs a trio that offers these pleasures.  Wherever the group Trovarroco is presented, it’s well received by critics and the public alike, and not only for their modesty and friendliness, but also for their musical search and the aim of using their instruments to push themselves to the heights of expressiveness.

The Casa de ALBA on Linea St. has now granted them a monthly space they call “Un añejo de Trovarroco” (aged Trovarroco).  Every first Saturday of the month at five o’clock in the afternoon Trovarroco stands up for its idea of mixing trova with baroque.

Exhibiting interesting work, they play works from the Cuban, Latin American and traditional repertoire, always raising the level of instrumental music to higher plains and mixing it with elements characteristic of that genre.

On April 2, in addition to listening to them play innovative versions of “Homenaje a trovadores y soneros,” “Barroco en son menor,” “El golpe de Bibijagua,” and “Son de la loma,” listeners enjoyed their guest artist: the youngest student of the tres, Mario Rodriguez, who at only eight years of age amazed the crowd with his dexterity.  The flute quartet Laudes de la Habana also performed songs that included a sublime version of “Flor de la Canela,” by Chabuca Granda.

Rachid Lopez, Maikel Elizarde and Cesar Bacaro are the members of the trio Trovarroco, and their ALBA sessions provide a great opportunity to enjoy their work.  The room fills with an easy going crowd, all lovers of strings and who will surely become regulars.

Click on the tumbnails below to view all the photos in this gallery