HOME ABOUT US ENTERTAINMENT ARTS UPCOMING EVENTS MUSIC PHOTOS VIDEOS PRESS ROOM CONTACT
About Us

¡Retumba! is a multi-ethnic all-female music and dance ensemble founded in March 1981 in celebration of Women's History month. Interweaving traditional rhythms, beautiful ancient melodies, with its very own unique interpretation, ¡Retumba! bases its work on the music and dance of Africa, Europe, and its expressions in the Americas and the Caribbean -Puerto Rico, Cuba, The Dominican Republic,

¡Retumba! emphasizes the particular strengths and sensitivities of diverse women working together in celebration, demonstrating the similarities and links of our shared cultures. ¡Retumba! brings forth the drama and excitement of world culture and traditions into a feast of
folkloric music that can be enjoyed by everyone.

The Story of ¡Retumba!

When ¡Retumba! Performs, What you see are women of a variety of ethnicities performing together. What you hear are a variety of languages and traditional music from Africa, the Caribbean and Latin America. What you feel is Pride in your ancestry; Hope for different cultures coming together and sharing, Curiosity about your own and other cultures and Belonging - a sense of community. What you learn is the music and dance of other cultures and you learn about your own culture as well. What you know is that you have been part of a performance that has given you a chance for enrichment and transformation, sharing an experience that changes your music appreciation and understanding of music, dance and songs forever - recognizing the music and dance within us and making it our own. What you understand are the beginnings of musical creation for all of humankind and that the drums have a language of their own for all to appreciate and how music, dance and song are inherently one in the human experience.

Artist-in-Residence

Gustavo "Chacho" Schartz began studying classical guitar at the age of nine. He attended the Buenos Aires Conservatory of Music in his native Argentina. In 1984 he moved to Israel and studied in the prestigious Rubin Academy of Music from1986 to 1990, graduating in jazz performance. Mr. Schartz has been a composer, arranger, performer, musical consultant and the only male musician with the Retumba / One World Arts group for over ten years. He is the founder and musical director of Son De Madre, playing the most unique mix of traditional and modern Cuban music with Brazilian, Jazz, Tango and World Music influences.

Retumba Con Pie!= ¡Retumba!

Before the group came to be known as ¡Retumba!, they were known as Retumba Con Pie (Spanish for resounding with feet). Initially, the repertoire focused on the rhythms of Africa (Ghana) and the folkloric rhythms of Puerto Rico and Cuba. With the passage of time the repertoire was expanded to include Dominican merengue, palo from Cuba and Haitian liberation dances as well as the folkloric music of Mexico and Peru. In addition, Retumba maintains a core of multi-talented artists who have the ability to sing, play and dance.

Towards the end of the first decade the ensemble enhanced the depth and breadth of their productions by including an educational component that instills pride, raises self-confidence and inspires cultural awareness in our youth. "It's important for young people to know that the music and dance of today has been passed down to us through our ancestors, who struggled, and in many cases died creating a better a life for us," says Martinez," and the best way to honor them is by being the best that we can be.”

One World Arts, Inc.

In 1991, Martinez and Friedman created One World Arts, Inc, a non-profit organization whose mission is to educate the public and to retain the traditions of the folkloric cultures around the world through educational programs where audiences of all ages come together and participate in projects that include theater and storytelling.

Over the years One World Arts, Inc. has created a number of large productions, including a Holiday Extravaganza that celebrates the traditional customs and music of Mexico and Puerto Rico; Journey through the Caribbean, which takes the audience on a journey that begins in Africa and travels to Cuba, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic; and the launching of the Group, Afroditee - whose song "Sex in New York City" was used for the promotional campaign of the syndicated television show, Sex and the City and was aired nationally on TBS.

Currently One World Arts, Inc. is seeking funding for works in progress, such as Melodia’s Drum, the story of a little girl who was discouraged from playing the drum in spite of the fact that it was her destiny to do so, Warrior Women, focusing on female warriors throughout history, the Butterfly Project-Bride’s March which confronts the issue of domestic violence towards women; Mirrors, a comedy/drama about a woman discovering her inner-self; and New York Tendaberry, a theatrical production based on the struggle between good and evil, featuring the music of the late composer, lyricist and pianist, Laura Nyro.

The Future

Future plans include producing, presenting and creating new programs and productions as well as a national tour that spreads Retumba’s philosophy and good will. According to its founders, “Looking back, you learn to value the important times in life rather than getting caught up in other concerns. ¡Retumba! , has offered us an enormous number of those times. Although the nature of our work is demanding and difficult in the sense of preparation and financial struggles, the work itself, the performing for audiences and receiving the support and positive feedback at every performance is very rewarding. The greatest joy is when students who have studied with ¡Retumba! are included in the ensemble performances and having them share the experience of performing at major venues is doubly rewarding."

In addition, Martinez and Friedman state that working in an ensemble of ethnically diverse women has been very satisfying in the sense that women, for the most part, are always working to improve themselves and their environment in a positive way. Their vision of the world is that of peace and harmony, to be achieved through cooperation and support and they place the utmost value on protecting the innocent and giving a voice to those that need to be heard. In this way ¡Retumba!'s vision is aligned with a woman's perception of the world.

Though they readily admit that maintaining their vision has not always been easy, they realize that the way to bring about positive change is not to fight against negative thinking but rather to provide positive alternatives for people to embrace. They feel a fullness and exhilaration when presenting people from all ethnicities, collaborating and embracing one another's differences and believe that they have been given the opportunity to celebrate the joy of life through the gift of diversity. For the members of ¡Retumba! , this is what life on earth is all about. Indeed, ¡Retumba!’s motto – “One World, One Human Race” is every bit as relevant today as when it was conceived.

¡Retumba! Members
       
Nancy Friedman
Nancy Friedman
Artistic Director
Percussionist,
Arranger, Composer
pic-ymartinez
Yvette Martinez
Artistic Director
Dancer,
Choreographer
Alda Reuter
Alda Reuter
Percussionist
Dancer,
Choreographer
Dassi Rosenkrantz Cabo
Dassi Rosenkrantz Cabo
Musical Director
Bass, Arranger, Composer
       
Robyn Lobe
Robyn Lobe
Percussionist
Dancer,
Choreographer
Sandra Rodriguez
Sandra Rodriguez
Vocalist, Actress,
Director, Storyteller
Naomi Bloch-Schartz
Naomi
Bloch-Schartz

Keyboards, Arts & Ed. Musical Director
Mignon Grayson-Fagains
Mignon
Grayson-Fagains

Vocalist
       
Bonnie Devlin
Bonnie Devlin
Percussionist
Christelle Durandy
Christelle Durandy
Vocalist
Goussy Celestin
Goussy Celestin
Dancer
Chacho pix
Gustavo "Chacho" Schartz
Bass, Arranger, Composer
     
Sue Hadjopoulos
Sue Hadjopoulos
Percussionist
Sofia Tosello
Sofia Tosello
Vocalist
Mary Cosme
Mari Cosme
Dancer
 
Shared Resources

Our shared resources section provides access to a growing list of links that will offer you helpful information.

www.techsoup.org
www.groundspring.org

-------------------------------------

Shared Links

Share our family of other culturally enriching web sites that promote the Arts, Culture and Customs of the "Isla del Encanto".


Welcome/Bienvenidos
to Art Studio Porto Fine Art
by Antonio Broccoli Porto
http://www.studioporto.com


www.bronxarts.org
www.bronxriverart.org
www.ctmd.org
www.artsconnection.org
www.sondemadre.com
www.bobbygonzalez.com
www.twusa.org
www.fdncenter.org
www.latinoarts.org

-------------------------------------

Copyrights
& Site Credits

COPYRIGHT ©
The information, text, graphics, photographs and all other site content, unless stated otherwise, is the sole property of One World Arts, Inc. and Retumba.org © 2005-2009, all rights reserved. The contents of this website may not be copied, reprinted or published without the expressed written consent of One Worlds Arts, Inc.

PHOTO CREDITS
¡Retumba! Blue Dress Dancer: Omar Castaños
¡Retumba! on the Balcony: Emma Rodriguez
¡Retumba! last 3 photos on the homepage slideshow by Camilo Rojas
¡Retumba! Dancers: Outstretched Arms
Richard Martinez
B/W ¡Retumba! Dancers Press Photo: Mansa K. Mussa
Yvette Martinez and students at Queens school: Virginia Dimsey
White Dress Bomba Dancers: Robert Lobe

IMAGE GALLERY
La Fiesta de Flores: Michael Greene
Bronx Zoo - Three Kings Holiday: S. Bolduc © wcs
¡Retumba! Promotion Group Photo: James J. Kriegsmann Jr.

CREATIVE INITIATIVES
3 King Puppet design and Creations: Theresa Linnehan


30th w/borders
 

Home | About Us | Entertainment Arts | Upcoming Events | Music | Photos | Videos | Press Room | Contact
Copyright © 2005-2009 Retumba.org - All Rights Reserved

Website design by MusiMedia L.L.C.