Saturday, July 12, 2014

Concert at the World Trade Center

On July 3rd the choir sang at Mexico City's World Trade Center for a medical conference (Annual refresher course in anesthesiology and perioperative medicine / Symposium in perioperative nursing).

20:45 - 21:45 Gala Concert
Choir Staccato, UNAM

They had requested that we prepare songs representative of the countries the conference attendees would be coming from. A few songs from our repertoire fit the request, but from there we had to add a lot more.We started preparing a while back and debuted 10 new songs at the concert! 

We sang: 

Kalkadunga (from Australia, though no one was from there - just to open the concert) 
El rossinyol (Spain) 
Yo vendo unos ojos negros (Chile) 
New York, New York (USA) 
Northwest Passage (Canada - I sang this in a trio with 2 other girls) 
Son de la loma (Cuba)
Guantanamera (Cuba) 
Angüe  (Panama) 
Loch Lomond (United Kingdom) 
Libertango (Argentina) 
El día que me quieras (Argentina) 
Mi ciudad (Mexico) 
El cascabel (Mexico) 
Prende la vela (Colombia) 
Vasija de barro (Ecuador) 
Louva a Deus (Brazil)          
Mas que nada (Brazil)                                     
Alma llanera (Venezuela) 
Bésame mucho (Mexico) 
Cielito lindo (Mexico) 

rehearsing "Northwest Passage"
*Natali's photo

girls singing "Vasija de Barro" during the concert
*Juan's photo
girls singing "Vasija de Barro" during the concert
*Juan's photo

*Source: Staccato's FB page
*Source: Staccato's FB page

Afterward we were invited to stay for appetizers and wine. Cheers! 

*Juan's photo

*Laura's photo

Singing at the Embassy of Georgia

On June 25th the choir sang at an event put on by the Embassy of Georgia in Mexico City, celebrating Georgia's Independence Day. We're slowly but surely becoming the (un)official choir of Embassy celebrations in Mexico City - hah! (Read about the choir singing at the Polish Embassy here and the Norwegian Embassy here)

The event was held on the top floor of the Mexican Stock Exchange, which offered some very impressive views of the city!
rehearsal at the Mexican Stock Exchange, before
the event started 

view from the Mexican Stock Exchange 

appetizer display
Presentation by Georgia's Ambassador in Mexico, Malkhaz Mikeladze
We sang Mexico's National Anthem and Georgia's National Anthem, "Tavisupleba."

singing "Tavisupleba"
Source: Staccato's FB page 
Here's a Youtube video of Tavisupleba (not us singing...) :

The boys really had their work cut out for them though.They learned and performed three men's choir pieces. Georgia is famous for its polyphonic music, which has been included on UNESCO's Intangible Cultural Heritage list.

Staccato's boys
One of the songs they sang was "Chakrulo," an old Georgian folk song with origins in Kakheti, Georgia, one of the most famous examples of Georgian polyphony. I recorded a video, but the audio is pretty bad on my camera (sorry about that!).

Who really stole the show though was the youth folk dance group that followed. They were INCREDIBLE! I didn't realize they were a world-famous, traveling dance group until afterward, though I definitely wasn't surprised. They go by "Los Niños Virtuosos de Cáucaso" in Spanish and "The Little Virtuosos" in English and the dancers are between the ages of 7 and 13. 

dance group's rehearsal
They were performing in Mexico throughout June and performed about 30-45 minutes of their show for us. Unfortunately my camera battery died, so I wasn't able to take any more photos or videos.

"The Little Virtuosos" 
"The Little Virtuosos" 

I found this 2 1/2 minute promo video on Youtube that gives a pretty good glimpse of what their performance is like :

I loved the knee spins, I was fascinated by how the boys danced on the top part of their toes, and I was impressed with how incredibly graceful the girls were!

Singing at the Embassy of Georgia's event was definitely an interesting experience!

Choral Marathon for World Environment Day

On June 22 the choir was one of twelve choirs that performed during the 3rd Choral Marathon commemorating World Environment Day at the "Alfonso Esparza Oteo" House at the SACM (Sociedad de Autores y Compositores de México). 

I think this was the Ensamble Vocal de Metepec,
directed by Alfredo Elías López

Ensamble Vocal K'Ay Há,
directed by Mariana Catherine Magaña

Ensamble Escénico Vocal del SNFM (Sistema Nacional de Fomento Musical),
directed by Jorge Córdoba V.
CUE Staccato (obviously during a song I wasn't singing in...)
CUE Staccato (obviously during a song I wasn't singing in...)
We were told there would be a live radio / online transmission, but that didn't happen. I'm not sure if plans changed or we got back information. The event went well though!

World Cup: Germany v. Ghana at a German restaurant

A German friend invited me to watch the Germany v. Ghana match at Nibelungengarten, a German restaurant and bakery here in the DF. I had never been before (didn't know it existed!), but it was nice to try a new place, eat and drink something different, and it definitely made the game-watching atmosphere a lot more interesting! 

I had the Salchicha Thuringer (Thuringian sausage / Thüringer Rostbratwurst) with mashed potatoes and vegetables and an Apfelschorle (carbonated mineral water + apple juice, apparently very popular in Germany). (I bought a nutella-filled pastry from the bakery on the way out as well - yum!) 

 It was a fun place / atmosphere to watch the game.

The game ended in a tie (2-2). (Note: I suppose I was rooting for Germany that day, though obviously USA in the group. Sorry Germany - I'm rooting for Argentina tomorrow).

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Going, going....

I haven't updated much recently. When I wasn't singing with the choir (we had 3 concerts in 2 weeks, plus rehearsals), I've been cranking away on my thesis.

But I have some very exciting news!  Remember the brief reference to my trip to the Brazilian Consulate? And how Edson is currently in Brazil? Well pretty soon I'm going to be there too!! I'm heading out on Sunday for a two week adventure! I'm so excited!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Choral Marathon for World Environment Day

On Sunday the choir will be one of twelve choirs performing during the 3rd Choral Marathon commemorating World Environment Day.

If you're local, it will be from 11:00 am - 5:00 pm at the "Alfonso Esparza Oteo" House at the SACM, near Metro Coyoacan. And it's free!

**Update: Looks like it will also be transmitted live via Online Radio at or, if you're local, on 1060 am. We'll be singing at 12:30 pm (local time).

Monday, June 16, 2014

World Cup 2014: USA v. Ghana

I'm so amused by all the World Cup - themed Google Doodles! Did you see the USA vs. Ghana - inspired doodle? During the game both birds were flapping. When the game ended, the USA had 2 little birdies in its nest and Ghana had 1, reflecting the score of 2-1. Go USA!

Google Doodle June 16, 2014

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Happy Father's Day!

Happy Father's Day, Dad! Today it's a double celebration - both here in Mexico and back at home. Unlike Mother's Day, Father's Day is celebrated the same day in both countries.

So a very happy Father's Day to all the Dads out there, new and old experienced, and especially mine -- he's pretty fantastic if I do say so myself!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

International lunch with friends

At the beginning of June some friends from the UNAM got together for a delicious, international lunch.

our meal

We ate rajas con crema (sliced poblano peppers with cream and cheese)...

chicharrón en salsa verde...

and a cuban dish with rice, black beans, meat (don't remember what exactly), and fried plantains.

For dessert I made chocolate cupcakes topped with fresh Chantilly cream and fruit. I was pretty proud of how they turned out.

We also had a Colomba al liquore, an Italian Grand Marnier flavored cake topped with chocolate, and Mil Hojas, a flaky pastry with manjar, from Chile (which you can see in the first photo of the post). It was all delicious!! 

Friday, June 13, 2014

World Cup 2014: Mexico vs. Cameroon

Today's Google Doodle (in Mexico at least) is in honor of the Mexico vs. Cameroon game. I like that Mexico's player looks like a lucha libre mask.

Google Doodle June 13, 2014

I wore my "Yo x México" ("x" = "por", "I'm for Mexico") bracelet in support of Mexico's team.

Mexico won 1-0, woo-hoo!

*Update - Looks like Google is updating the Doodle based on the World Cup schedule. Once the Mexico - Cameroon game finished up, the Doodle changed to reflect the Spain - Netherlands game!