What's Going On . . . 6/30/2021
Josy La Torre
Visit of the singer to learn about the projects of Fundación de Culebra and document them for a program of the Instituto de Cultura Coloqueo in various towns and this one in Culebra. Josy was very impressed, especially with Daphne Padrón who played a melody in piano that moved us all.
MPC Celebrates 6th Anniversary
On-site Summer Camp 2021
Piano/Ukulele/Percussion/ Steel Drums/Art
Summer arrived, and taking lots of care, we went face-to-face. And it was an epic summer.
Thanks to the wonderful team that, for a month, worked with so much love with our children from Culebra. There are no words to describe how healing it was and how the children's joy rubbed off on all of us. We had 50 children during the month; young ones in the morning and old ones in the afternoon divided into groups of 5 and 6 students. We also offered Drum Circle and Steel Drum Band rehearsals until 7:00. Thanks to the team; José Fabián Rosa, Edgardo Vega, Stephanie Rodríguez, Alejandra Guzmán, Daliana Dickson, Doug in the Studio and Luz coordinating. We would especially like to thank “uncle” Mario Albert for helping in the evenings and Mayor Edilberto Romero for coming and supporting us at the concert. We had our young children or "musical seeds" who were super good and enjoyed all the activities to the fullest. Many of the older kids have been in the program for 6 years and under the direction of maestro Fabián Rosa they created the Paradise Steel Band. Neither the children nor the parents wanted this summer to end. All this lead to our summer concert on June 25th.
MPC Summer Camp Concert . . . 6/25/2021
A magical and very happy night, where the Culebra family got together with so much joy, after being locked down
for so long. . . .
The power to share was so needed. The conert repertoire included, dance by the little ones, piano and ukulele among others. We had a beautiful performance by Olivia in a Hallelujah solo that moved everyone. The circle of Barriles where all the older kids participated and there was a Bomba dance by two of the girls. The closing segment was from the Paradise Steel Band, the MPC youth steel drum band led by maestro Fabián. In just 3 weeks they put together a repertoire of 5 songs that raised the spirits of everyone present and those who tuned in online. Reviewing the achievements after so many difficulties is something that fills us with satisfaction. Our biggest reward is that everyone said it was the best camp of their life and they didn't want it to end. It has not been easy but as I always say…. We continue.
Video Premiere of "Culebra es un Paraíso". . . 6/25/2021
The Música Pa ’Culebra program produced a video to promote the protection of our Canal Luis Peña Marine Reserve. This was a collaboration with the organization Protectores de Cuencas.
We made an invitation to Culebra's dear friend and famous composer Alberto Carrión. Alberto wrote, with our teacher José Fabián Rosa, a beautiful song "Culebra es un Paraíso". Alberto also composed the music for it. He came and taught the little singers how to use their voices in the studio and worked in a very special way with the entire production team. It was painstaking and beautiful work that brought many people together to make a wonderful educational video. We are very grateful to everyone who supported us especially Doug Lang for always going the extra mile. We hope you enjoy it and share it. We take pride in our Canal Luis Peña Marine Reserve! Culebra is a Paradise!
We remind you that due to the pandemic we have not been able to do any fundraising activities. So any financial contribution is welcome and necessary to continue with the work we do.
Growing up gives a lot of satisfaction, but at the same time increases expenses because our children and young people ask for more. Help us to help …… be part of this effort that is an achievement of so many people in different ways. Please click here to make a donation.
We want to thank everyone who supports us. Carol Wolgie for lending us her house so part of the teachers had lodging. Thanks especially to Justin Sullivan for believing in us from day one and dreaming together for better opportunities for our children and youth.
What's Going On . . . 5/30/2021
Steel Drum Restoration
Laiza García and Edwin Cruz de las Croabas were on a mission to bring the old Steel drums to restore, some had to be discarded, but they donated two that belonged to the famous musician Jack Warren.
Drum Circle every Tuesday at 6:00 pm with teacher José Fabián Rosa
What's Going On . . . 4/30/2021
We received a donation of Barriles drums for Bomba from the Episcopal Church (Father José and Father Jorge Rosa). We had our two percussion teachers Gabriel Carpena and José Fabián Rosa in an activity with the students to officially receive them. A big present.
We contacted Alberto to write a song for the children about the protection of the Canal Luis Peña Reserve. He composed the music and the lyrics with our teacher José Fabián Rosa. He met several times with the little singers, our musicians and Doug in the studio to teach them how to better use their voices, etc. Then our musicians wanted to complement the video with other aspects and it resulted in a super laborious but at the same time fruitful experience in a beautiful video of the Reserve. Grateful for sharing your talent, time, and love.
Pirulo and his Tribe.
Pirulo, a renowned Salsa singer from Puerto Rico, visited us. He participated in the Watershed Protectors Project and gave a motivational talk to young people from Música Pa ’Culebra. Although with few students, because of the protocol they enjoyed it immensely and the messages of persevering, being a team and supporting each other penetrated deeply in our young people.
What's Going On . . . March 30, 2021
We started individual classes for piano, Percussion and Steel Drum.
We installed the floor of the Multipurpose/Dance Room.
PodCast recording of Grupo de Corales del Este Puerto Rico.
Doug Lang in the MPC studio worked on the technical part of the Podcast with Abimarie Otaño Cruz and Alfredo Montañez and collaborators.
Culebra Canta was an adult singing contest in Culebra. Luz Rivera-Cantwell participated as a judge in addition to two other people. It was very entertaining and for weeks the community waited for Saturday to see it. Very close competition, there is a lot of talent in Culebra. The winner was Ivette Rodríguez. He will help the winner Fundación de Culebra record a demo with her music and voice.
What's Going On . . . November 24, 2020
We have not communicated for awhile because we have been working hard to train ourselves and adapt to the times that we are now living in. What have we been doing?
Remote and face-to-face classes / MPC2020 Concierto Virtual
- Our children have worked remotely and face-to-face with their dedicated teachers to perform a very special virtual concert, which we hope will be enjoyed by all. We want to thank the MPC teachers for their dedication and effort in organizing and recording this concert. We also thank, very especially, Douglas Lang for the production of it, excellent! We will be premiering the MPC2020 Concierto Virtual on December 6, 2020 on FaceBook at 7:00 pm. It will be available after that on the Musica Pa'Culebra YouTube page
-Ten computer tablets, a tenor steel drum and a small beginners steel drum were donated by Mr. Misla and his wife Magaly.
-Fundación de Culebra has moved its large printer to the old school so it can be used by the community. We want to thank everyone who donated ink for it.
- Donated fast internet for all music and art rooms so that children and young people can have access.
Laiza and Edwin
- who are friends of Culebra and the Fundación de Culebra are helping to restore the old steel drums we had. These drums include a bass, double second and double tenor. We are very excited that little by little we will have enough instruments to put together a steel drum band in Culebra!
- Eduardo Puig facilitated the donation of a grand piano that we have restored. It was a complicated mission to transport it and install it in the studio, but it was achieved. Once the piano is tuned, we will be making it available for anyone interested in playing it. Now even the mothers of the children are encouraged to study on such a beautiful piano.
Keyboard Room Improvements
- Thanks to Amy and Dusty Ballinger, parents of two girls in the program, who donated air conditioning equipment and the installation. We fitted the acoustic panels and plastic screens so that the keyboard room is now protected from inclement weather, noise and dust. This gives the instruments greater durability.
Recording Studio Improvements
- The rooms have been painted and the acoustic panels were decorated by the children with the direction of the art teachers Daliana and Cynthia. Everything is more organized and the room has been configured as a teleconference room where the kids can take their virtual / face-to-face classes or go to practice their instruments.
All of this would not be possible without the support of many organizations and people in the community. Every little effort causes us great satisfaction, and working together on these projects enhances commitment and makes the community stronger.
Thanksgiving is coming up. That word is too small for all the love we feel on our work team for all of you. Thanks to your help in many different forms, we can make all these wonderful things possible for our children, youth and community! This year it will not be possible to have our fundraising activity due to the emergency, so we would appreciate any donation to our organization.
We wish you health, happiness and many blessings.
Fundación de Culebra / Corona Virus-Covid19
May 4, 2020, Culebra - 0 cases of Covid-19
Cheers! We live every day as a challenge. These are times of uncertainty and times for re-inventing ourselves and looking for new ways of living. We are proud that through our teamwork and effort we are still at 0 cases.
Our program - Música Pa’ Culebra . . . 5/4/20
- Before isolation was established, we presented a singing handwashing workshop with the children of the Música Pa ’Culebra program.
- We have distributed instruments to MPC students at their homes. In this way they can continue practicing and being productive. At the same time bringing joy to their families.
- We are beginning the preparations for the online classes. The piano lessons started last week. Steel drum, guitar and percussion lessons will start shortly.
- We are buying some drum pads and sticks so that young children can play drums and congas at home and benefit from online classes.
- We are looking for ways to get keyboards for the little ones and another Steel drum to facilitate the classes.We currently have 7 steel drum students and only 3 steel drums.
- We are building a program to acquire tablets and laptops so that children can take online classes. Many children have access limited to parent's cell phones. This makes the visual part of remote teaching difficult.
Much has happened so far this year. . . 02/23/20
On Sunday, December 23, 2020 at 5:30 pm we had our annual February fundraiser.
Thanks to all the people who came to show their love and support for our kids and our community! It was a night full of music and great memories. Thanks to Justin for being a great host, opening his house to our kids and guests. Thanks also to the parents that provided all the great food and effort putting the event together.
Music Pa ’Culebra is celebrating a year full of
initiatives and achievements in 2019. . . 12/29/19
On Sunday, December 15, 2019 at 6:00 pm we had the Semester Closing Concert.
This was a concert where the little ones performed a series of simple but successful presentations. They represent the next wave of Música Pa Culebra! The big ones we see starting to shine as confident musicians as they work together to learn music and the art of performance. We had a house full of proud family members and visitors who joined us in supportintg our children.
In November we had our fundraiser at Club Nautico, which was a big success.
The children performed a set of music that demonstrated their talent. They did a wonderful job of showing their musical progress to an audience that was largely made up of people from the main island. It was a very successful event. Logistics were a real challenge, but we learn more every day and seeing the effect on children makes all the effort worth it. A grand piano was donated that needed repair, but it is finished and we are waiting now for the transportation details to fall into place. This piano was donated by a person who attended the Club Nautico event.
Music Pa ’Culebra is celebrating a year full
of initiatives and
achievements in 2019.
This year our summer camp had 64 children, 4 music teachers and 2 art teachers.
This Fall semester we have an enrollment of 45 children in the Friday and Saturday programs. The piano teacher started some introductory music lessons for kids from 3 to 5 years old, which the children and their mothers have enjoyed very much. It is also the first semester that we added mid-week music classes for adults and children. Our Conga and Rhythms of the Caribbean classes have been very busy.
'During 2019 we have coordinated free concerts in Culebra with visiting artists such as:
• William Cepeda Afrorican Jazz
• The 5 Cats Calypso Band
• The Orchestra of the Interamerican University of Bomba y Plena
• New Docta Chamber Music Group
We are also offering art classes for all ages of children every Saturday. This has been very successful and has added a new dimension to our program.
The Culebra Foundation signed a collaborative agreement with the Interamerican University to support our music program. We already had a visiting teacher who spent time reviewing our program. The plan is for Interamerican to help us develop a music curriculum along with new activities to encourage parents to participate in the program.
We plan to continue working and growing in 2020. We have a long-term vision of making Culebra a place where music and the arts are a cultural highlight for the community and for visitors. We hope to create opportunities for our musicians to play around Culebra and throughout Puerto Rico.
As you can see there has been a lot of progress. We are already celebrating our 4th year of Música Pa Culebra and 25 years of the Culebra Foundation.
We have started our fall semester at
Música Pa' Culebra. . . 09/25/19
This session runs from August to December 2019. This semester is a very challenging one because we are growing rapidly and we are working on some new additions to the program.
To achieve this, we have hired the Anthony Sierra part time. He moved to Culebra in August and joins us as percussion teacher. We have also added Doug Lang as coordinator of teacher and children's activities. This past week for the first time they made a musical presentation at the Ecological School with some of the MPC students. We hope to make these presentations a monthly occurrence.
We have some facility improvements on our list. We just replaced an ailing Air Conditioner.
We are also fitting out a booth for the recording studio, which has become a magnet for the older kids. We still need a couple French doors or a sliding door, to connect both rooms. We are also looking for ceiling acoustic tiles and office dividers to finalize the recording studio sound proofing.
We want to thank Eduardo Puig, Odarissa Rivera, Elsita Tió, Juan Carlos Montalvo, Carmen Sabater and Dawn Keon for instrument donations! Instruments are always welcome! We received the donation of a 16-passenger Transit bus that will help us take the children to various activities on the island and in Puerto Rico.
As you can see we have been very busy! We are currently in need of financial contributions because the major expense of the program is the payment to teachers. We are excited to see the response we have received from the children and the community in general to the new course offers. There is a group of adults asking for individual classes ... But in order to continue growing we need you to donate. No matter what your financial contribution, it is important. Remember that we have 501-C3 so you can deduct your contributions from the donation!
With you supporting our children, we continue!
Music in the Plaza and
February Fundraiser is a huge success. . . 02/18/2019
Music In The Plaza was an event where the resident community and visitors gathered to support our children of Música Pa 'Culebra.
All the children played, even the 6-year-olds that only started in February. The older students played, and surprised everyone with their progress in both playing and performing. They're clearly feeling more comfortable in front of an audience. They opened the performance, which left everyone hungry for more music from the kids. Two of the mothers addressed the audience. One mother shared her volunteer experience one summer and explained the complexity of managing and teaching children music. The other mother explained how the program is teaching her son to read music and gave her son the opportunity to develop his dream of playing music. A dream that would have been difficult without Música Pa 'Culebra.
The 5 Cats played a lively set after the kids. Their Calypso music delighted the community and did a great job bringing everyone together.
The fundraising activity at Justin's house was a total success.
Justin was a tremendous host for the children of Música Pa 'Culebra, their parents and all the guests. The food prepared by the parents and friends of the program was exquisite. We had a Silent Auction prepared by Cindy Golbert, to whom we are very grateful, with the help of all those who donated for it, which was very good. The children played a different and wider repertoire, which left everyone very pleased. Then the 5 Cats played their Calypso music, which got the dancing started and even included a little limbo. Graciela, one of the girls who plays the steel drum, joined the 5 Cats in the last song and it was excellent. Joa another of the girls who plays the steel drum said she wants to continue practicing to play professionally with a band like the 5 Cats! The 5 Cats pledged to help us develop our steel drum band and teach the kids every time they are hired to play in Culebra.
The joy and energy that was created that night was magical. Thanks again to Justin Sullivan for opening the doors of his home and supporting our children. Many thanks to all those who attended and those who support us so that this dream of music in Culebra becomes a reality. Blessings!
5 Cats Steel Band
Call Fabian: 787-595-4255
Concert of Mexican Music 11/24/2018
Música Pa’ Culebra invites you to a Mexican music concert, free for the whole community. We want to present different types of music for the enjoyment of all. We will introduce you to two groups that play traditional music and also new music, and classical music performances with new rhythms. In addition, the musicians will give a free workshop to our children of the program.
Don't miss it!
Carribean Night to Benefit
Musica Pa’ Culebra 11/14/2018
Save the Date
The Club Naútico of San Juan will be the host of a musical event whose objective is to raise funds for the Música Pa' Culebra program. This program has been run successfully for 3 and a half years by the Fundación de Culebra. Fundación de Culebra is a community-based organization that has been providing services in the areas of history, culture, nature and community for 24 years. This is the first time, that the music program has presented an activity outside of Culebra.
Música Pa 'Culebra started as a 6-week summer camp in 2015. "We started with drum sticks, 25 paint pails, 2 old keyboards, 3 guitars, 3 teachers, 25 children .... and a lot of hope, "said Luz Rivera-Cantwell, director of the Foundation. "Today we have about 40 young people in the program with adequate instruments and we operate in the summer and during the school semesters. Many have played a part in making this program the success that it is. "
The activity, which will take place outdoors at the Club Naútico of San Juan, will have a Caribbean atmosphere with typical delights. The dress is "Playera Chic" and the music begins at 6:30 pm with the teachers, followed by a presentation by some of Culebra's children, and ends with the "5 Cats Steel Band" that play Calypso. The suggested donation is $50 per person. Cocktails courtesy of Méndez & Compañia.
The money raised will increase the teaching hours and allow for the expansion of a two level program for beginning and intermediate students. "The program has been running for three and a half years and we need to support musicians that have advanced to an intermediate skill level." said Joey Sala, co-founder of the program, a Culebra part-time resident and music lover. He adds that "Many good things are coming from here for the present and future of Culebra."
SUMMARY: Benefit for Música Pa’ Culebra
Wednesday, November 14
6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Club Naútico of San Juan, Marina Hall
Suggested donation $ 50.00 pp
CONTACT: Luz Rivera 787-617-8517
Joey Sala 787-505-2780
Concierto de Mayo 5/20/18
Successful Fundraiser For a
Full-time Music Teacher! 2/25/18
We would like to thank everyone who helped to make our Musica Pa' Culebra February Fundraiser a success. We had a crowd of around 100 people made up of full and part-time residents, friends, visitors, students, musicians, family and Culebra supporters who brought a remarkable feeling of celebration to the event. The food was prepared by parents and friends of the project and was delicious. The musician Roberto Figueroa, from Oh Brasil, delighted us with his music. To add to the delight, the kids had the chance to wow us with their skill and excitement by performing 4 songs from their current repertoire. For many at the event, it was a first glimpse at the positive effect that Musica Pa' Culebra is having on the youth of this island. It was a super festive event.
We would especially like to thank Terry Bischoff and Dennis Rivera for lending us their beautiful residence for the activity. We'd like to thank everybody who came, as well as those far away who sent donations. We would like to thank Carlos Rodríguez of Vieques Air Links for providing transportation for our musical guest Roberto Figueroa. We would also like to thank all parents and collaborators who helped to put all the pieces together to make it happen.
The end result is that we managed to raise enough funds to get closer to our goals of having a full-time teacher for the program, providing year-round music education for the children, helping organize groups and creating musical opportunities for our community.
Thanks to everyone, onward and upward!
Music is a building Block.
Nearly everyone enjoys music, whether by listening to it, singing, or playing an instrument. One of the more interesting aspects of music is that it has benefits that are almost too many to list. Musical training helps develop language and reasoning, memory and coordination. Music teaches collaboration, self-reliance, self-confidence, creativity and discipline. Music engages people and creates positive opportunities for community interaction. Music events get people excited. The skills learned playing music are a building block for life.
With its spectacular island surroundings and its mix of local culture and visitors from around the world, Culebra is an excellent place to create opportunities for music to flourish.
Musica Pa' Culebra
Everything changed during the summer of 2016. Thanks to the Fundacion De Culebra and support from Joey Sala and a small group of Culebra lovers, Musica Pa Culebra was born. The municipality of Culebra provided some classrooms located at the old public school. After a lot of hard work, the classrooms were conditioned and some instruments were donated. We recruited 3 teachers (senior students from the Conservatorio de Musica de Puerto Rico) and organized a 6 week summer camp. There were 38 Culebren children from the Escuela Ecologica and Abbie's School who participated. It was a huge success! On the closing night, the children performed a presentation of 18 musical pieces. More than 150 people from the community attended. The kids were proud of their accomplishments and now they want more music!
Where do we go from here?
We are currently in the process of putting together the pieces to make Musica Pa Culebra an on-going part of life in Culebra.
We're working toward securing long term access to the rooms we use in the old school and planning renovations.
We're building a program that runs through the school year and the summer.
We're hiring teachers, acquiring instruments, and developing curriculum and public events.
We're building support to make Musica Pa Culebra on-going and self-sustaining.
We invite you to get involved.
We couldn't do this without help of all kinds. We need help fixing rooms, painting, wiring, plumbing, running events, teaching, supervising the facility, fixing instruments, spreading the word and raising money. Every day more pieces fall into place as Musica Pa Culebra takes shape. We invite you to get involved. If you would like to have us keep you informed about all that is happening, please join our email list and don't hesitate to call or shoot us an email if you have ideas. And of course, donations are always welcome; please visit our donation page.
Thank you for your support!
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