Check out my previous post for the recap story on the Chicago International Salsa Congress
Check out my previous post for the recap story on the Chicago International Salsa Congress
This year marked the 17th annual Chicago International Salsa Congress and this exciting 4-day event was filled with musicians, performances and dance workshops. The feeling once you step into the salsa congress is like no other. There’s a joy that comes over you and it doesn’t matter if you’re not a dancer because the overall experience is breathtaking. Many come for its sole purpose and that is to enjoy themselves, experience and witness what the event is all about.
As always it never ceases to amaze me on how performers from different states, cities and around the world come together under one roof to showcase their best performances. Passion, creativity, love for music and dance is shared with the crowed. This year in particular there was more of a focus on the youth program and dance. I was stunned to see such young kids go on stage and dance their hearts off. After learning what Rosita Ragin-Alamin, co-founder and producer shared with me, she noted that it is important because these kids go on stage in front of many people and learn to become confident. I could not agree more because if there is something where kids can learn how to feel that poise within them they can conquer anything.
During the day, DJ’s and guest DJ’s play music continuously throughout 3 ballrooms and the main hallway area to keep the energy going. The evening weekend line up featured, JR and his bachata band from New York, Orquesta Guayacan direct from Colombia, La Sonora Ponceña of Puerto Rico and Sunday night closed with the best of the best from the Midwest with an incredible jam session under the direction of Chicago’s own Edwin Sanchez and Angel Rodriguez.
Each year I always look forward to the different workshops held during the day such as, SalsaArobics, Bachata Footwork, Ladies Styling, Mambo Shines, Cuban Salsa, Cha Cha, Brazilan Samba, Afro Mambo, Kizomba, Vogue and the list goes on! The classes are an hour long and usually there is one or two instructors leading the class in each ballroom for different classes. At the end of each workshop session the instructor allows the class to record him/her as they demonstrate the routine one last time. Instructors also offer a one-on-one private dance session.
If you’re interested, then you definitely do not want to miss out on next year’s Chicago International Salsa Congress! February 7 -10, 2019. For more info, click on the link below and visit them!
“The earth is Art, the photographer is only a witness.” 📸captured by me 📸
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Singer/artist Amara La Negra has been making a statement since the first season of Love & Hip Hop Miami aired on January 1, 2018. The viewers are able to know more about her and how she is empowering women like her to not give up, never change who you are and most importantly your appearance. She is shining a light on how difficult it is for women who are dark skinned to make it in the entertainment/music industry without being told that they need to change their appearance.
Born Dana Danelys De Los Santos in Miami, Florida, the 27-year-old was raised by a single mother who moved from the Dominican Republic to the United States in hopes to give her daughter a better future. Amara has shared some of her deepest moments on the show on how her mother worked five jobs to make ends meet. She also shared that as a young girl she attended dance classes, took acting classes, modeling and in 1991 she won her first award in a beauty pageant.
Amara is a Latin musician who has made music in the Latin industry and has worked with well-known artists along the way. However, from what we’ve learned from her debut on Love & Hip Hop, Amara is looking into breaking in the American music industry but not without facing hardships from being told that she needs to change her appearance. In a recent interview on the radio station the Breakfast Club, Amara discusses these particular issues.
“We come in so many different shades that it’s like, why is it so hard for people to understand that or accept me? I feel like there’s this standard of beauty that you have to look a certain type of way in order to be pretty, your hair needs to be straight and silky or if you’re Latina you have to look like J. LO…” She also noted, “there isn’t a Latin country that doesn’t look like me.”
On the show Amara seeks guidance from a well-known producer named Young Hollywood. She wanted some insight on how she can make a crossover from the Latin music industry to the American music industry. However, things took a turn when he asked her why her hair is the way it is. He then proceeded to tell her to be less Macy Gray and be more Beyoncé and called her a Nutella Queen.
As you can imagine the internet has been all over this issue and the majority are taking a stand with Amara. Although, she discussed how she was angry, instead she explains how important it is to educate people like Young Hollywood.
Since the show Amara has been on several interviews and continues to bring awareness to the public. She also landed a multi-album record deal with BMG and is the CEO and founder of ALN Clothing line. This goes to show that even after being criticized Amara does not let it stop her and get in the way of her dreams. She explains how she embraces her appearance, sets her self apart and is her own person. The Afro-Latina is empowering women and young ladies to love the skin they’re in and their hair. She notes everyone is different and that’s what makes them unique.
Although, this topic is about breaking in the American music industry this is something that many Latinos and African-American’s encounter. The stereotype continues because people are not properly educated or are single-minded.
To learn more about Amara La Negra you can watch the show Love and Hip Hop Miami every Monday 9/8C on VH1 and or follow her on social media.
This year’s Latino Fashion Week motto was “Without Limits” and it truly lived to its name. From the opening night till the last day I was amazed by the different styles from each designer. Once again, co-founders and producers of the show Arabel Alva Rosales and Cesar Rolon Jr. brought out some of the best designers and even those who are starting up and giving them a chance to showcase their work.
Hey Guys! So last Friday a few friends and I took the opportunity to have a photo shoot in one of the most hipster sides of town…LOGAN SQUARE! This neighborhood in Chicago has some great art and the nightlife is a plus! filled with restaurants, bars, lounges and more! The art in the area just makes the neighborhood stand out and gives it a funky vibe. From now on we would like to take a few Fridays to do photo shoots in different parts of the city and share all the wonderful places to visit. So if you’re a tourist, new to the city or even someone who has lived here for a long time we hope we can share some new places with you.
Check below the end of these pics to learn more about Logan Square and check out
Logan Square is an official community area, historical neighborhood, and public squarelocated on the northwest side of the City of Chicago. The Logan Square community area is one of the 77 city-designated community areas established for planning purposes. The Logan Square neighborhood, located within the Logan Square community area, is centered on the public square that serves as its namesake, located at the three-way intersection of Milwaukee Avenue, Logan Boulevard and Kedzie Boulevard.
The community area of Logan Square is, in general, bounded by the Metra/Milwaukee District North Line railroad on the west, the North Branch of the Chicago River on the east, Diversey Parkway, on the north, and Bloomingdale Avenue on the south. The area is characterized by the prominent historical boulevards, stately greystones and large bungalow-style homes. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Logan_Square,_Chicago)
Ever wanted to dress casual for work but still needed to look professional? Well, here is a simple style on how to pull off the duo. First, when it comes to jeans I tend to lean more towards a darker color rather than lighter jeans. Secondly, always have a blazer because this will initially complete the duo look. As shown in the pictures below I went for a flowy orange shirt but even a fitted white tee or any other color will look just as good. As for shoes I decided to wear wedges however, a pair of nice closed sandals or even flats will also do the trick.
Puerto Rico came and left before I knew it, but my experience there was impeccable. Words truly can’t explain the way I felt being on the motherland. From the moment I landed there was a comfort inside of me like this was truly paradise. Being there two days before my sisters big day/wedding we had the opportunity to relax and settle in. The day before the wedding was the walk through at the venue (Casa De Espana) and seeing it for the first time took my breath away. That same evening after the walk through we went to eat at an amazing restaurant named Raices in Old San Juan. Raices means roots in English and it was fitting because the waiters and waitresses had on traditional Puerto Rican outfits. The food and the drinks were delicious and the overall ambiance was joyful.
The day of the wedding I felt the jitters but excited all at the same time. Watching my sister walk down the isle as my father stood by her side holding her arm was beautiful and emotional. Instant tears of joy streamed down my sisters face and of course the rest of us. From beginning to end the evening was like a fairytale that I got to experience. It was also a blessing that 93 friends and family were able to witness such a spectacular wedding.
Casa De Espana is definitely a historic site and place to visit when traveling to Puerto Rico.
The days after the wedding were spent visiting family, Hiking EL Yunque/Rain forest up in the mountains, lounging at Luquillo beach and visiting El Morro/The Fort. Although, I was unable to do every activity I still enjoyed my time and the things I got to do. There’s the worlds highest zip lining in Puerto Rico, the Bioluminescent Bay adventure, Culebras and Viques which are 2 small island municipalities of Puerto Rico and are just 17 and 14 miles away from the mainland with private/white sand beaches, etc….
The people everywhere we went were kind, respectful, polite and made you feel welcomed.
Puerto Rico definitely stole my heart.
Steven Souriyadeth and check out his Website at ourstoriesyourlegacy.com (Founder & Executive Publisher) IG: @souris55
Vanessa Elizondo, Angel Elizondo, Lolina Lautoa
Things to do in P.R. https://www.expedia.com/things-to-do/search?location=Puerto-Rico-Island®ionId=180021&kword=what_to_do_in_puerto_rico_island!b.ZzZz.4990000246190.0.80539227990259.things%20to%20do%20in%20puerto%20rico.what_to_do_in_puerto_rico_island&semcid=US.MULTILOB.BING.SEARCH.TSHOP&utm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=USA%3AENG%3A%5D%3ADL%3AAMER%3AX%3AB%3AX%3A%3A&utm_term=what%20to%20do%20in%20puerto%20rico%20island&utm_content=USA%3AENG%3A%5D%3ADT%3AAMER%3APRI%3AXX%3ACaribbean%3A6022969%3APuerto_Rico_Island%3A180021%3AB%3AX%3Awhat_to_do%3A
“They didn’t call me to do this movie. I was the one who generated the script and opened the company. I hired the writers, directors, and brought everyone to make it happen,” said Actor Eugenio Derbez.
On Monday April 17, LatinoScoop hosted the “How To Be A Latino Lover,” media event at the National Museum of Mexican Art in the Pilsen neighborhood in Chicago.
Actor Eugenio Derbez was the star of the evening and gave an inspirational speech about his anticipated film. He explained how his journey was not an easy process but did not give up. His words of wisdom moved the crowd and informed noted to be proud of who you are and the title of the movie is a prime example of that.
“Even though it’s an American Movie filmed by Lionsgate, the 2 stars fo the movie are Latino,” he said.
The event displayed easels with photos from scenes of the movie throughout the gallery. Because the event was media driven those who attended were welcomed to take pictures and post to social media.
Complimentary appetizers and drinks from HennessyVS were also given to guests. Before Eugenio Derbez went on stage a teen mariachi band performed for the guests. LatinoScoop did an amazing job in putting the event together.
The cast of the movie includes, Eugenio Derbez, Salma Hayek, Kristen Bell, Rob Lowe, Raquel Welch, Rob Riggle, Michael Cera and Rob Corddry.
“How To Be A Latin Lover” hits theaters Friday April, 28.
On Sunday April 16 it would have been Selena Quintanilla’s 46th birthday. What better way to celebrate than by having a tribute to the singer known as the Queen of Tejano.
ColdChillen Event Management hosted yet another memorable event. “Missing My Baby” was held at Untitled in Chicago and it was all about Selena Quintanilla. As soon as you walked in ladies were given a single white rose and a goody bag. A birthday cake was also presented with a photo of the singer on it and an artist was doing a live mural painting of Selena. The lights were dim and candles lit up the room for the occasion. There was also a tabled filled with pizza boxes for guests and another station with nail technicians from Hush Nail Salon doing manicures. A mariachi band also performed and paid tribute.
The ambiance in the room was uplifting and you can feel the love and energy resonating. A projector screen played a video with pictures of Selena as music played in the background. Selena’s music and voice swept fans from all over the world and her legacy continues to live on.