Early Music Seattle: De Inga y Mandinga – A Diaspora Tale from Latin America
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Early Music Seattle is excited to be playing a role in the creation of this performance in partnership with the cast of De Inga y Mandinga and the Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center. The performance, a drama with music, is an intergenerational community-led project that will tell the story of colonialism, migration and cultural mixing in Latin America. The 2022 De Inga y Mandinga version will be a new iteration of previous versions staged in 2012, 2013, and 2014, in which we will incorporate Sephardic and Ladino repertoire along with Afro-Latinx diasporic music. The core artists for this show include the De Cajón Project music group, Milvia Pacheco, Lian Caspi, and guest artist Trio Guadalevin, along with a youth group that will include both participants from the earlier productions and new participants.
To better understand how to create a just partnership between a white-led arts organization and BIPOC artists, staff and board members of Early Music Seattle and members of the project’s cast are meeting regularly to plan the production using the peacemaking circle format. Peacemaking circle format, a process that builds relationships so complex problems can be addressed. Our partnership has many aspects to discuss, such as audience access, the portrayal of people of color in EMS advertising media, cultural appropriation of African and Latin American music, and more. We are finding, after several meetings that this extended planning process is allowing us to get to know each other and begin to build the trust we need to have in place to be able to present this, and future projects in a just, authentic way.
This production is a collective creation under the artistic direction of Monica Rojas, and presented by Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute and Early Music Seattle.
We will keep you posted on our process in the months to come and we ask for your patience as we deal with the challenges ahead. You will be hearing more details as we build the framework needed to establish a new method of collaboration that we can apply to our future work.