The Trinidad and Tobago National Philharmonic Orchestra gave a delightful performance of TT and Venezuelan music at the celebration of the 61st anniversary of bilateral diplomatic relations between the two countries at the National Academy for the Performing (NAPA), Frederick Street, Port of Spain.
The concert was jointly organised by the Venezuelan embassy and the Ministry of Foreign and Caricom Affairs.
Dr Roger Henry conducted the orchestra which played typical Venezuelan and Trinidadian songs that thrilled the audience on September 14.
Venezuelan Ambassador Álvaro Sánchez Cordero noted that history and culture are fundamental aspects of the brotherhood between the both countries.
He said, “Venezuela and TT have been strategic allies practically since the beginning of TT's independent life. However, our relationship extends beyond 1962, as Venezuela and TT have remained culturally and historically united for more than 200 years, and even for millennia, if we consider our ancestral indigenous origins, common to both countries.”
Neela Ram-Atwaroo, permanent secretary (Ag) Ministry of Foreign and Caricom Affairs spoke of the close ties between the two countries, as well as the potential for exchange and co-operation in strategic sectors such as energy and transportation.
She said, “It is an honour to celebrate 61 years of brotherhood between TT and our Venezuelan neighbours. The political and cultural relations between both countries allow us to trust in integration and collaboration through art and music. Like TT, Venezuela has a love for drums and the celebrations of Saint John's Day in Mandela Park by the Venezuelan community demonstrate this. Venezuela loves calypso and they commemorate their day by appreciating the Trinidadian heritage.”
The National Philharmonic Orchestra opened the concert with the iconic piece, Venezuela, by Pablo Herrero and José Luis Armenteros. This was followed by Venezuelan-Trinidadian musician and composer Lionel Belasco with Luna de Maracaibo, Palmas de Maracaibo and Venezuela. The orchestra then played Analicia by Rafael Osuna, Desilusión by Juan Vicente Torrealba, and Caballo Viejo by Simón Díaz. The Venezuelan segment of the show closed with calypso, Woman del Callao.
The TT segment included the popular Progress by Winsford Devine; Savannah Grass by Kes Dieffenthaller and Henry's own original pieces, Symphony 2: Dance and Tan Tan wrapped up the concert.
Henry recognised the work local musicians have been doing and thanked the National Orchestra System of Venezuela for sending the musical scores of the Venezuelan songs and thus contributing to the success of the concert.