Paterson Music Project Blog: Voices of the Silk City by Danielle Lefebvre | November 2018
The Art in the Park Showcase is a free, public event featuring performances by local artists from the Silk City in the heart of Paterson’s Great Falls National Park. On October 14, PMP performed alongside other student and adult groups presented through different mediums of art such as dance, monologue, poetry, murals, and music. This was the second year that PMP has participated in the event.
New this year, was a collaboration with New York City-based salsa band, People of Earth (POE). POE is a dynamic world music ensemble creating an explosive blend of music from Cuba, Puerto Rico, Brazil and beyond. PMP performed the famous tune, “Oye Como Va,” alongside People of Earth.
PMP staff member Danielle Lefebvre sat down with POE’s director, Gabriel Globus-Hoenich about the event. Here’s what he had to say:
How was the experience performing with the PMP kids?
Personally it was extra special playing with my best friends, who I teach alongside, and to play for students and their families. It was great to interact with students and their families and seeing their reaction to the fusion music. We usually play for a general audience, so performing for families was special since we are trying to incorporate and develop a family audience in our program. Half the band are teachers and some students.
What was the significance of the music you chose?
We wanted to choose a mix of songs in English and Spanish because the families are mixed, so we performed, “Oye Como Va.” We wanted music about inclusion, sharing, and friendship. We played original songs as well as a Stevie Wonder cover that touches on socio-economic issues.
What was the significance of the Great Falls Festival to you?
“It was our first Great Falls Festival; it was beautiful, great production staff, super cool venue, and a beautiful place!”