It was my 3rd time boarding a plane from LAX that month. This time, unlike the previous two (the first for Portland and the second for an awesome wedding I will be blogging soon!), I had my passport in hand, some big sticks in my suitcase, and an extra bottle of water or two. And instead of going north, this time the plane went south… to Mexico! TAIKOPROJECT was invited to perform at the Festival Internacional in Chihuahua, a festival that spans 4 weeks and includes artists from different countries around the world. We did one show in Chihuahua city and another in Juarez and both were absolutely amazing experiences – I can’t remember the last time, if ever, I got to perform in front of such an excited and energetic audience.
The highlight… During the last piece of our set, we incorporated the “Cielito Lindo” melody into the piece (which until then I had just shamefully known as the “Ay ay ay” song), being told that it was a song that would resonate with the audience. We practiced it for weeks before the performance, not 100% sure what the reaction would be like, hoping we would receive applause rather than say, a slew of rotten tomatoes. During the actual performance we began the piece and transitioned into “Cielito Lindo” in the middle… the audience was quiet at first… then erupted into roars and cheers as they recognized the song. It was absolutely exhilarating. They began to sing along and sway in unison with us onstage and seriously, it took a bit of willpower to not become a teary mess right there on stage. It’s one thing to connect with the audience in LA, with friends and family in the crowd, but another thing all together to connect with an audience in a different country, with a different culture, who beforehand just knew us as some people with big drums and shiny pants.
The SLR stays at home during such perilous journeys, but I did manage to snap some shots with the P&S, as well as “borrow” a few shots from Bruno as well! (Thank you Bruno!)
Off the plane we go…
A bit of the stage (how gnarly are those lights – totally reminded me of some kind of nausea-inducing carnival ride):
Above photo taken by Bruno
The super awesome crowd! It was great getting to interact with them post-show (shots by Bruno) –
Some fun in the plaza:
And a group pic! Including Chiyo, our sweeter than sweet guide:
And now to exercise my girlfriend-y duties for the day, here is an official notice that Scott’s band, Potential Difference, will be playing at the Knitting Factory next week! It’s their first gig in awhile and let me tell you, I’ve been listening to them practice every week (while I sit downstairs furiously editing photos) and it’s going to be a killer set. Shoot me an email if you’re interested and I’ll hook you up with some sizzling hot tickets!!