Howard Magazine - Page 14 - Highlight By Patti Restivo For Howard Magazine

Howard Magazine
- Page 14
Highlight By Patti Restivo For Howard Magazine

Traditional rhythms

 

A Howard County nonprofit earns state honors for preserving Puerto Rican music and dance

 

When it comes to sharing Puerto Rican culture, “the music does the translating for us,” says Hanover resident Angel Rivera.

 

Rivera’s Howard County-based nonprofit Cultura Plenera promotes two of the island’s musical traditions – bomba, an African-influenced percussion music style that dates back more than half a century, and plena, a 150-year-old folk genre passed down to Rivera by his father 40 years ago.

 

This month, after decades of sharing their music locally, the group will be recognized by the Maryland State Arts Council with a Maryland Traditions Heritage Award for its stewardship of the living tradition.

 

Cultura Plenera’s roots in Howard County began to sprout almost 20 years ago when Rivera and friends began performing in Howard County