Cuba remembers the Queen of Cuban Punto, Celina Gonzales

Cuba remembers the Queen of Cuban Punto, Celina Gonzales
Fecha de publicación: 
4 February 2023
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The Cuban Institute of Music today evoked the imprint of 'The Queen of Punto', singer Celina Gonzalez, who passed away in 2015 but her voice remains alive among the followers of her work.

We remember the passing of the performer, composer and National Music Prize 2003, one of the most renowned voices in the musical world, whose work highlighted the farmers’ roots and the influence of the African religion, the Institute highlights in Facebook.

Punto, declared world intangible cultural heritage by Unesco, is the poetry and music of Cuban farmers, consisting of a tune or melody over which a person sings an improvised or learned stanza of ten octameter verse lines, with a rhyming scheme.

There are two main variants of Punto: punto libre, a tune of free meter; and punto fijo, which can be in key or crossed. Throughout history, the element has typically been practised in the countryside, though variants now exist throughout the rest of the population.

Punto is an essential element of Cuban intangible cultural heritage open to all, which promotes dialogue and expresses the feelings, knowledge and values of the communities concerned.

During Celina’s career, of more than seven decades, the artist achieved great popularity in Cuba and across the region and left for posterity emblematic themes of the national soundtrack, among them Una Santa Bárbara, Yo soy el Punto Cubano, Que viva changó, Mi tierra es así and Flores para tu altar.

In her career she shared the stage with iconic figures of the sound scene of Cuba, such as Reutilio Dominguez, who became her partner and husband, Ñico Saquito, Benny More, Barbarito Diez, among others, while shining on stages around the world with her talent.

Her discography (La Rica Cosecha, Desde la Habana te Traigo, Cincuenta Años…. Como una Reina, La Guía Áspera a la Música de Cuba) covers a diversity of genres and styles such as the décima, punto cubano, guaracha, salsa, guajira, llanera, among others.

Last year, the record label Bis Music presented the album Sigue cantando Celina, a production that paid tribute to the “Queen” with a selection of 10 songs made popular by the artist who would have celebrated her 94th birthday in 2022.

The album also included the song Cantando Celina, written by maestro Adalberto Alvarez, was produced by Paulito FG and included the voices of María Victoria Rodriguez, Susel Gomez, of the Orquesta Reve, and Susy Noriega. Gonzalez (1929-2015) is an indisputable reference of country music and an artist who marked stages and ways of doing things, which is why her work is considered a jewel of the country’s sound heritage.

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