By Wilfredo José Burgos Matos
As their final event, the Multicultural Music Group (MMG), honored the people of Equatorial
Guinea, Darfur, and the Saharawi’s. On June 16 th , at the Studio Theatre at Lehman College, the
MMG Orchestra took us to a journey on different levels with every piece.
The event, which had speakers such as Mr. Tutu Alicante from Equatorial Guinea Justice, and
the Saharawi’s Association in the USA, had one idea as the epicenter: we are all related or as Dr. Luis Mojica, Director of the MMG said, “we’re all cousins.”
Without a doubt, all of that could be felt throughout the whole concert. Once of the pieces that
was, in many ways, transformative was the one depicting the situation of the Saharawi’s. The
many forms in which the percussion was included as a background yet principal sound, almost
as a juxtaposition, alluded to the violent panorama that has left Western Sahara dispossessed
of their natural resources. An air of protest, almost as if you could smell and feel the dessert’s heat, wandered around the scenario with every beats of the tambourines and drums.
Other of the pieces that caught the attention of the public was the one in which the MMG Orchestra was honoring the situations of Equatorial Guinea, the Saharawi’s, and Darfur with a
Puerto Rican bomba beat. The images presenting the bomba bateyes on the island and in New
York gave the sense of cohesion that was present in all the conversations that the speakers had
with Dr. Luis Mojica.
In this occasion, the MMG added another audiovisual resource: video clips. This interesting
addition gave more life to the traditional presentation of images and music. This audiovisual
support added an improved form of understanding historical contexts, element that characterizes the MMG and its Multicultural Music Encounters every year. The only hope that could be grasped from the audience is that the MMG continues to further their incomparable commitment to society’s education through their events, which are a one-of- a-kind form of understanding today’s world. There’s no doubt that you will always learn something new as you get in to these events that have contributed tremendously to New York City.