Bicentennial celebration at the Opera House-Kennedy Center was part of a series of commemorating events organized by the Embassy of Colombia in Washington DC
To keep celebrating the 200th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Colombia and the United States, the Embassy of Colombia in Washington DC hosted an event at the Kennedy Center Opera House where Colombians and Americans enjoyed an evening full of musical talent from both countries and a reception with a taste of Colombian culture.
With the presence of the President of Colombia Ivan Duque Marquez who gave celebratory remarks, the event highlighted the most important milestones of the bilateral relation
As the president remembered, “the relationship between Colombia and the United States has been bipartisan and has been bicameral in congress. It doesn’t matter if you are democrat or republican or liberal or conservador or right or left. What matters Is that when it comes to the relationship, is the United States of America and Colombia (…) we have those same values in our hearts”.
Important Colombian and American artists participated. Among them, Patti LaBelle American singer and actress nominated 13 times for Grammy awards and selected twice for that honor. Carolina Gaitan and Mauricio Castillo, both Colombian artists, voices of the famous movie Encanto. Gaitan was Pepa Madrigal, and “Mauro” was Felix Madrigal. The singer Morgan James who has been in numerous Broadway shows including Godspell and The Adams Family enchanted the audience with her magical voice. El Cholo Valderrama, Llanero Colombian singer-songwriter and master of llanera music filled the stage with Joropo melodies. His performance was accompanied by 8 pairs of dancers from the same region.
The Vallenatera, Diana Burco, the singer songwriter Billy Gilman, Herencia de Timbiqui and La Mojarra electrica from the pacific in Colombia, Opera singers Hanna Shea and Betty Garces, the Sugar tone Brass band from New Orleans, Victoria Saavedra also from the pacific, Carnaval de Barranquilla, Banda de Baranoa from Barranquilla in the Colombia Caribbean, and Chabuco were also part of the amazing celebration.
The show closed with a performance by the Colombian modern urban group from Medellin, Piso 21 a band that in 2014, released the single "Suele Suceder" featuring Puerto Rican singer Nicky Jam. According to Billboard this year, the popular band led the charts with this song among Latin audiences.
High level officials from the United States and the Colombian government, as well as members of private organizations, journalists and civil society representatives enjoyed the magical evening.
At the Opera House, Marta Lucia Ramirez, Vice-president and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia, Flavia Santoro the President of Pro Colombia, the brand agency of the country, first lady Maria Juliana Ruiz, Angelica Mayolo, Minister of Culture, and Juan Carlos Pinzon Bueno Ambassador of Colombia to the United States had the opportunity to salute and interact with invitees.
In his remarks, Ambassador Pinzon, highlighted that “the Colombia US relations have been predicate on a share commitment of the fundamental values the define the hearts of our two nations: the defense of democracy, institutions and the rule of law. The protection of liberty and freedoms and the respect for human rights”
Some of the Colombian artists came to Washington one day before of the main event and shared their knowledge and talent with local artists. At the Kennedy center Lucho Gaitan and Alejandro Montaña, founders of the afro pacific group La Mojarra electrica, exchanged knowledge with one of the percussionists of the Pop Orchestra at the Kennedy Center stage.
Also, the Joropo Group showcased their talent to promote the International Joropo contest that will take place in Los Llanos in August 2022. and were applauded by international audiences that were at La Cosecha, a group of restaurants and stores of Latin products located in the center of the United States.
It was a great opportunity to reinforce the ties between the two countries Colombia and the United States. It was the first time and Embassy launch this amazing show in the most important scenario at the capital of the United States