Saturday, February 10, 2007

"Atol con el dedo", or "Feeding Tomato Soup with the Finger"

"The Soprano is Russian, and the violins are electric": This is the type of sound bites I heard for promoting the biennial IX Paiz Arts Festival, in Antigua Guatemala (don't bother trying their website's english version, it's empty).

Well, it is understandable that artistic integrity is compromised in one of the major arts festivals in Guatemala, where your social status is measured by the size of the brand label on the clothes you wear (as in "How big is you Banana Republic?"). Many arts events are still organized as oportunities to show off (even by presenters, in this case: the Paiz Foundation).

Needless to say: the soprano turned out to be 3rd class-ish, the conductor got lost more than once very obviously. But because he talked to the audience in English (he is British) and she is Russian, they got a standing ovation (Bravi to the people that walked out in the middle of that concert!!)

I'm not going anywhere near the electric violins. Hopefully in two years, the Paiz Foundation will go back to the idea that is more about the arts and less about social status or getting tax breaks for a supermarket chain.

No comments: