The world premier, Pagano y No (Pagan or Not), is choreographed to the music of Aruán Ortiz, which is a compelling combination of the modernistic classical and Afro-Cuban jazz genres." World Music Boston
Cuban folk culture is a melting pot of traditions originating in Europe, Africa and the Caribbean. This combination has been celebrated for decades through a multitude of art forms, most notably music and dance. Cuban composer/pianist Aruán Ortiz offers a new musical score for the original ballet Pagan or Not performed by the José Mateo Ballet Theater in celebration of the company's 25th anniversary. It encapsulates the essence of the cultural history of Oriente, Cuba from the early exposure of Afro-Caribbean music of the slaves to its more cosmopolitan mélange.
Santiarican Blues Suite blends contemporary classical music with Afro-Haitian music dating back to the 19th century. The compositions of the Suite are based on the African minuet form that originated in Haiti and has become a standard musical format in Oriente (aka tumba francesa).