University of Vermont

Concert of Latin American Protest Songs Dec. 2

Miriam Bernardo and Jairo Sequeira
Miriam Bernardo and Jairo Sequeira.

Miriam Bernardo and Jairo Sequeira will present a concert of Latin American protest songs on Monday, Dec. 2, at 7:30 p.m. in the Southwick Recital Hall. The folk songs, from throughout the region, take their inspiration from the "Nueva Canción" movement championed by the late great Argentine singer, Mercedes Sosa. The performers will also interpret music from Violeta Parra, Lila Downs, Silvio Rodriguez, Victor Jara, Lhasa de Sela and Susana Baca among many others.

Vocalist and guitarist Sequeira was part of the Sandinista movement in Nicaragua in the 1980s and has lived in Vermont since the mid-1990s. Vocalist Bernardo is a Vermonter of Cuban-American background.

The concert was inspired by an interdisciplinary class, "Culture and Politics of Latin American Protest Music," taught by John Waldron in the departments of Romance Languages and Global Studies, Caroline Beer in the Political Science Department, and Alexandar Stewart in the Music and Dance Department.

“One of the great legacies of the political movements of Latin America is the music and the artistic reaction that accompanied them, which provide unique insight into the history of the region,” Stewart says. Students studied many of the songs that will be performed and helped provide the translations in the program.

The class was funded through a competitive interdisciplinary grant program offered by the Office of the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences called the Enhancing Excellence Through the Interdisciplinary Experiential Engagement initiative.