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SPR Goes to the Movies: Buena Vista Social Club


The movie Buena Vista Social Club was a huge 1999 art-house hit that introduced people around the world to Cuba's special blend of Latin music, and the island's post-revolution culture.

Many of SPR"s Volunteers, Underwriters, and members saw it on the big screen June 9 at the Bing Crosby Theater for the annual Thank-You Event.

Movies 101 on stage

Nathan Weinbender, Dan Webster, and Leonard Oakland started the night at 6:30, recording a Movies 101 episode about the impact this film had on musical documentaries That episode will air on July 1 and July 2.

Then at 7:30, the audience began watching the film that resurrected the music of pre-revolution Cuba. The documentary filmed in 1997 follows a group of legendary Cuban musicians as they gather to record an album and perform a concert in the United States, which was usually restricted due to the political tension between Cuba and the U.S. 


The film was produced by American composer-musician Ry Cooder and directed by Wim Wenders.  It takes place mainly in Cuba, but it also follows the musicians to Amsterdam and the United States where the group played at Carnegie Hall.  The documentary alternates between anecdotal interviews and exclusive concert and performance footage—a format that came to define the genre of music documentaries today.

Thanks to event donors: Northern Quest Casino and Resort, Strong Solutions, and Vino! A Wine Shop.

This is SPR's annual Underwriter & Volunteer Thank-You event! Businesses which had underwritten since May 2015 and volunteers in the same timeline could arrange for a free pair of tickets to this event.