Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

Home · Articles · News · Music · Tiempo Libre
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Tiempo Libre

Ross Boissoneau - January 19th, 2009
People think there are certain things that just don’t go together. Plaids and stripes, for instance. Or maybe chocolate and lemonade. How about Latin music and orchestral music?
Two out of three maybe. Tiempo Libre intends to prove to the audience at Corson Auditorium on Saturday, Jan. 24 that the group’s fiery Latin music can indeed coexist with symphonic stylings. One of the hottest Latin groups today, Tiempo Libre will be teaming up with the Interlochen Arts Academy Orchestra to perform Venezuelan composer Ricardo Lorenz’s “Rumba Sinfnica.” And if that’s not enough, the Grammy-nominated group will also play a set of their signature brand of salsa known as timba.
“We were classical music students, but it’s different playing timba than classical,” said Jorge Gomez, the group’s pianist, just before Tiempo Libre began its tour.
But whatever the form, Gomez says the crowd at Interlochen had better be ready for a good time. “I’m looking forward to seeing the crowd dancing,” he said. “They’re going to sing with us and dance with us. It’s like a Cuban party.
“They’d better be prepared.”

For his part, Lorenz says the piece he composed in collaboration with Gomez will bring out the best in both the orchestra and in Tiempo Libre. “They are disparate musics,” he said from his office at Michigan State University, where he is a professor of music composition. “That’s the point – to have two different genres that don’t connect (come together).”
The inspiration for “Rumba Sinfnica” came when Lorenz saw a performance by the band. He suggested they collaborate on a piece, and Tiempo Libre agreed. While he had previously composed pieces that mixed genres in a similar fashion, such as his “Pataruco: Concerto for Venezuelan Maracas and Orchestra” or “Puente Trans-Arábico for Middle Eastern percussion and String Quartet,” this was the first time he composed a piece specifically for a working band.
“This is unique because of the people involved,” Lorenz said. “From the onset I collaborated with Jorge. If it was going to work, I knew Tiempo Libre had to think of it as their own.
“Another group could perform it, but it needs a group that comes in (together) to be so tight. If they needed to rehearse to play together, it would be a disaster.”
No such worries with this group. The seven members of Tiempo Libre learned the ropes by studying classical music by day in Cuba, then, despite orders to the contrary, picking up the nuances of their homeland’s rhythms outside the classroom. Upon immigrating to Florida, the members came back together as Tiempo Libre to celebrate their heritage while taking advantage of the skills they’d learned in the conservatories.

Those classical lessons come in handy on the group’s latest recording as well, O’Reilly Street, with famed classical flutist Sir James Galway. Galway and four members of Tiempo Libre – Gomez, bassist Tebelio Fonte, drummer Hilario Bell, and percussionist Leandro González – collaborated on selections from Claude Bolling’s “Suite for Flute and Jazz Piano” and traditional pieces, along with a Gomez original and Bach’s “Contradanza.”
The results are engaging and uplifting, with the Cuban musicians bringing new life to Bolling’s music and bringing out the best in Galway. Or maybe it’s the other way around. No matter, the end result is a delight.
Gomez promises the same for the show at Interlochen.
“Music is energy. It’s everything about Cuban culture,” he said.

Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. show are $21 for adults, $18 for seniors and $9 for students. Call the box office at 276-7800 or go online to tickets.interlochen.org.

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