Almost no time to finish assimilating the balance of the year of the vaccines, the most heterodox cultural event in La Rioja breaks out. With 32 editions behind it, the festival Actual has always been distinguished by being the earliest date of which are celebrated throughout the Spanish geography. This time it was not going to be less, and it is Sunday, January 2, still with the taste of grapes in the mouth and the hangover of the unconfined in the blood, when the Great Concerts of Actual 2022 cycle begins.
Kiko Veneno and Ariel Rot: the grand opening
The Riojaforum auditorium, the main enclave of the program, houses the most requested live performances. Following in the spirit of Barnabas and Mateo, the two astronauts who return to Earth just in time for the start of the Present 32 years after traveling to space, in what is known as the first astronomical expedition of some Riojans, the first of the concerts also has a lot of extraterrestrial. Not only because of the great dimension of the singers who open the festival, but because of that unusual artistic personality that takes them away from earthly issues.
Endowed with an overflowing creativity, Kiko Venom Y Ariel Rot they would not be able to concentrate all their talents in a single musical genre. No matter how much they proposed, they would always end up in projects similar to the one that has just emerged on the occasion of the program A country to listen to it, coordinated by the Argentine. On the idea of transferring the essence of the program to the stage, the concert on January 2 constitutes the beginning of a tour that bets, as in the RTVE program, on the musical fraternity and the encounter between artists. On Sunday they accompany them Rozalén, Coke Mesh, Fetén Fetén and the local group Measure.
Tote King and Jaime Lorente: the most anticipated debut
Another of the events that has generated the most expectation in the Great Concerts cycle is the performance of the mythical rapper Tote King together with an exceptional partner: Jaime Lorente. The planetary recognition in recent years for his interpretation in The Money Heist has not stopped the concerns of the actor, Denver in the Netflix series, which is launched into the music industry with a project halfway between hip hop, electronics and pop, which will see the light on stage on January 4 .
Between the responsibility of accompanying the rapper and, at the same time, the protection that this implies, Lorente embarks on a new and brave stage with the Actual as a witness. His concert replaces the performance of Gabriel Garzón Montano, an author’s proposal that is definitively dropped from the Actual 2022 programming “for reasons beyond the festival’s control,” as reported from their press office.
Jay-Jay Johanson: “cult” music
The Swedish singer-songwriter is the alternative to more independent music left vacant by Garzón Montano. Jay-Jay Johanson’s performance is presented as the gift of programming Kings. The artist’s polyhedral style, pregnant with essential references such as Chet Baker The Leonard Cohen, will be able to be enjoyed next Thursday, January 6 at the Riojaforum, overcoming the halfway point of a festival that, until then, will have consumed a good part of its grill. Although the best is yet to come.
Isabel Coixet: tribute to a career
If anyone thought we were done with the Swedish singer-songwriter, they will discover right now that one of his songs, “Heard somebody whistle”, was used by Isabel Coixet as a tune to his series Foodie love. The filmmaker is one of the main protagonists of Actual 2022. One of her most emblematic films, The secret Life of the words (2005), will be screened on January 7 at the Breton Theater, an activity framed in the film cycle. After the visualization, Coixet will participate in a dialogue with the spectators.
Javier Cámara: his photographic side
The producer Esther García, the director and actress Agnès Jaoui and the writer Laura Ferrero will accompany the filmmaker in the colloquium. Too Javier Chamber, member of the cast in the film to be screened, recognized with the Goya Award for Best Film and Best Direction, among others. In addition, the actor from La Rioja presents in this edition of the Actual festival the exhibition The pleasure of looking, a compilation of photographs taken by the Camera himself in different shootings throughout his career. From December 17 to February 13 it is open to the public at the Museum of La Rioja.
María José Llergo: Closing for flamenco
The young woman from Cordoba, who paradoxically has once again shaken the foundations of flamenco from the defense of the ancestral, is in charge of the closing with a performance framed in the Great Concerts cycle. It will be on January 8 at a gala where he will present his work Healing and the first Actual A Awards will be delivered.
It will be received, on the one hand, by the actor and theater director from La Rioja Ricardo Romanos and the presenter and scriptwriter Bob Pop, director of one of the most successful series of the year, Lost fagot, which will also be screened in the festival’s La Gonza cycle, whose name corresponds to the site that hosts it: the Gonzalo de Berceo room. On the other hand, the aforementioned Isabel Coixet and María José Llergo herself are also recognized because “they widen the margins of the artistic consensus of their time.”
Iconoclasts complete the musical cast Nathy Peluso, Rigoberta Bandini, the rapper Arkano, The eternal Juan Dog in the Paraíso Cycle and what since Actual have defined as 2.0 singer-songwriters, who mix the author’s song with the folk music of their land or with popular genres. It is the case of Maria Arnal and Marcél Bagés, Rodrigo Cuevas, Julia de Castro, Vicente Navarro.
Beyond music, film and photography, the three disciplines that preside over the festival, there is no shortage of exhibitions such as that of the Vivanco Collection, the most important of those presented, with some treasures from masters such as Andy Warhol, Miró, Dalí or Picasso. It will continue dragging the label of “early riser” for the first dates in which it is celebrated, badly than its director, Santiago Tabernero. But, in its own right, this scene of contemporary cultures that is Actual has become, more than a first, a first-rate festival throughout the country.
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