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(De izq. a der.) Juan Deras, Lea Chiurco y el Dr. Agustín Díaz

Orquesta GarDel’s final concert of the summer is in a different format than our usual social-dance-night-at-a-downtown-club. Our lead trumpet player, Alberto Carrasquillo, introduced us to a remarkable young woman, Lea Chiurco, who is a professional singer that sometimes plays with Ricardo Diquez. She is also starting a non-profit called Hope From Notes, which seeks to raise funds for members of the Latino community who are unable to afford large medical costs. You can read more about how she came to care about this cause, and her previous efforts at producing community concerts to raise money in this La Conexión article. Now Lea has set her sights on a biiiiiigg show, at the Dorton Arena on the NC State Fairgrounds, to raise money for four men who are in dire need of kidney transplants. She approached Orquesta GarDel about being the backing band for the second half of the concert, and we are honored to help with this mission.

Musically, the concert will be unique because it will feature almost all of the Triangle’s salsa singers – Ricardo Diquez from Tropic Orchestra, Anthony Alvarez from Orquesta K’Che, and relative newcomer Cristina Alamo (husband of marimba-whiz Juan) for Orquesta GarDel. That makes it a one-of-a-kind all-star night as far as salsa is concerned. We’re so happy that all the singers and instrumentalists can share single stage. The first half of the show features other acts, like Colombian harpist Pavelid Castaneda, the UNC Clef Hangers, and Lea’s special choir assembled for the occasion.

There is no set price for tickets, this is all about making donations towards the cause. We’d suggest $20 a person, more if you are feeling magnanimous. We’re not sure whether or not they accept credit cards – perhaps bring cash or check just in case? The show begins around 6pm with the smaller acts, then there will be an intermission, then the all-star salsa band around 7:30 or 8pm. There will be plenty of space on the arena floor for dancing.

Watching Lea’s Facebook Event for updates is helpful – we’re learning now that it would be cool if we all wore the color purple to show our support for these four men.

We hope to mobilize as much of the dance community as possible to come help Lea and her Hope From Notes crew fill the arena with bodies, and with funds for the cause. Details about the September 6th show can be found below. Pa’lante!