Bronx, NY, The Hostos Center for the Arts & Culture in association with Mario A. Torres Productions will celebrate the work and legacy of legendary bolero and salsa composer Miguel Angel “Mike” Amadeo and his music store, Casa Amadeo, in a series of events during the week of November 14 – 18.
Titled Que me lo den en vida (Give it to me in life), the celebration will include a bus tour of the South Bronx neighborhood surrounding Casa Amadeo where so many Latin musicians and composers lived, performed and created and a conversation with Mike Amadeo conducted by cultural historian Juan Flores, musical director Ray Santos and Mike’s favorite fan, Bronx Congressman José Serrano.
The celebration will culminate with a gala concert on Friday, November 18 at 7:30 p.m. featuring the Ray Santos All-Star Orchestra and a series of guest vocalists who have recorded Mike Amadeo’s music, including sonero Hermán Olivera (of Eddie Palmieri’s band), Puerto Rican diva and pop star Sophy, and salsa romantica crooner Ray Sepúlveda.
Other guests include vocalists who have been influenced by Mike Amadeo’s music, including Ray Viera, Luisito Ayala, Luisito Rosario and Gloria Osiris. They will be joined by several surprise guests who cannot be named because of exclusivity agreements they have with other venues.
The bill also includes Mike Amadeo’s favorite trio, Trio Nueva York, which will open the concert with a set of Amadeo’s best known boleros, the genre for which he is best known. Backing up the Ray Santos All-Star Orchestra will be a complete string section from the Bronx Arts Ensemble Orchestra.
The concert will be held in the Main Theater, Hostos Community College, 450 Grand Concourse at 149 Street in the Bronx. (Transportation: IRT 2, 4, Bx1 and Bx19 to the Grand Concourse and 149 Street.)
Admission is $45, $35 and $25. The box office and information number is 718-518-4455. Visa, MasterCard, Amex and Discover Card accepted. Tickets can also be purchased online at www.hostos.cuny.edu/culturearts.
Casa Amadeo is the longest continuously operating Latin music store in the country. Located on Prospect Avenue in the Bronx, the store originally belonged to the legendary Puerto Rican composer and musician Rafael Hernández and his sister, Victoria. When Hernández died, his sister sold the store to Mike Amadeo who has turned it into a living museum of Latino culture. Casa Amadeo currently enjoys landmark status, and it continues to do brisk business. The artists who have recorded Mike’s songs are a veritable Who’s-Who of Latin music; they include the soloists at the concert on November 18. The celebration takes its name from one of Mike’s best known salsa tunes — Que me lo den en vida — which was recorded by El Grand Combo and became one of the all-time great hits in the genre.
The celebration of Mike Amadeo’s career will include the following special events:
Press and VIP Reception
Tues, Nov 15, 11:00 a.m.
Casa Amadeo Music Store
Prospect Avenue (at Westchester Ave.)
Reception host: The Honorable José Serrano, Congressman, District 17
Reception open to the press and by invitation only. Please call 718-518-6700 to RSVP.
Mott Haven: Incubator of Latin Music
Wed, Nov 16, 7:00 p.m.
Departs from Casa Amadeo
A bus tour of the South Bronx neighborhood surrounding Casa Amadeo where so much Latin music was created and performed. Tour guides: Mike Amadeo, ethnomusicologist Roberta Singer, and folklorist Elena Martínez. The tour will visit the streets and sites of the old clubs and cabarets where so many of the Latin music greats lived and performed. Mike’s co-tour guides are experts on the subject having conducted extensive research on the South Bronx music scene of the 1930’s, 40’s and 50’s. The tour will depart from Casa Amadeo. Admission is free but reservations must be made by calling the Hostos box office at 718-518-4455.
A Conversation with Mike Amadeo
Thurs, Nov 17, 7:00 p.m.
Repertory Theater /Hostos Community College
450 Grand Concourse at 149 Street, The Bronx
Mike Amadeo and his most avid fan, Congressman José Serrano, will be joined by cultural historian Juan Flores and Maestro Ray Santos in a conversation on Mike’s career, Latin music and its development in New York City.
Que me lo den en vida is being sponsored by the Hostos Community College Foundation and Mario A. Torres Productions with funds and support from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the Bronx Arts Ensemble, NY State Senator Marco Serrano, NY City Councilman Joel Rivera, ConEdison, Ponce de León Federal Bank and the Hispanic Information and Telecommunications Network.