“You would give up your career if you lost your voice for good, or if the impresarios stopped calling, or the audiences stopped coming. But as long as those things are there, I don’t plan to stop. There is nothing that makes me feel better than to be with my public.”- Celia Cruz
Yesterday, I was running around trying to get too many things done, in what seemed like not enough time. And then I thought, what am thinking, heading downtown from North Vancouver during rush hour traffic to go see… a movie? Really? The cars were at a standstill and my mind was telling me to turn back and just head home. So I started slowing down but … I missed the first turn, and then couldn’t get myself to take the second for some reason. It was as if something kept nudging me to keep going, even though I had no space to move forward to. But somehow, I actually managed to get over to the Van City Theatre just in time to catch the screening of the Celia Cruz movie that the Vancouver International Salsafestival (VIS) were putting on. And boy, it was so worth the traffic I had to get through to get there.
What an inspiring way to start off the week of the festival. Not only did the screening begin with an amazing promotional video for VIS- recapping some of the highlights of VIS over the past four years- but, I was blown away by the touching details about Cruz’s life and personality that I didn’t know before. Artists of many genres were commenting on the
legacy that Celia left behind.
Celia was described as “pure breath”, “born of rhythm,” and “possessing an energy that you couldn’t help but to be drawn to” by artists such as Quincy Jones, Eddie Torres, musicians connected to the Fania All Stars, and even modern artists such as Pitbull. The way Celia captivated her audiences not just by her music, but also by her persona- her connection to people and her songs of happiness and positivity- shown in the movie, was a great reminder of how one person can have a huge influence on millions of people of all generations.
Thank you VIS for continuing to give Celia an audience long after her life and passing on her legacy not just as an artist but as an inspiring woman in history. This legendary artist lives on in many hearts all over the world, and I know that after what I learned from the movie last night, her music will carry an even deeper meaning to me and all those who came out to watch it and to dance a little before and after the screening!
Looking forward to more fantastic dancing, learning, and unforgettable memories this weekend at VIS!
Check out the site for tickets and schedules and the amazing line up of instructors and performers from all over the globe! You don’t want to miss this. It’s the last one!
Vancouver International Salsafestival