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Ventura Music Festival’s first Concierto Mar y Sol promises cultural explosion of Latin legends, Oct

(Ventura, CA) Traditionally, over the past 16 years, the Ventura Music Festival has brought in acclaimed classical and world-renowned musicians to perform at its festival the first two weeks in May.

With the support of the Irvine Foundation, the Ventura Music Festival continues to look for ways to diversify its audience and reach into surrounding communities with organizers announcing a Latin Music Festival as part of its repertoire to celebrate culture and heritage locally and regionally within the community.

Designed to increase attendance and participation in music events, the Irvine Grant is specifically geared to attract diverse audiences and younger age groups by inviting performers who are well versed in cross-cultural music. The grant will extend through January 2011.

Hailed as an afternoon to immerse the spirit and soul in the sounds of Latin, jazz, salsa, Cuban, Afro, Brazilian and other ethnic beats, the Ventura Music Festival’s first Concierto Mar y Sol (sea and sun) will feature nine-time Grammy Award winner Eddie Palmieri, critically-acclaimed Forró in the Dark and seasoned percussionist Munyungo Jackson.

Festival details:

Date: Oct. 3, 2010

Time: Noon to 6 p.m.

Where: Oxnard College, 4000 S. Rose Avenue, Oxnard, CA

Cost: Adults: $45 through Sept. 6, $55 after; Youths 22 and under, $25

Tickets and information: or (805) 648-3146

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About Eddie Palmieri

Known for his charismatic power and bold innovative drive, Palmieri’s musical career spans more than 50 years as a bandleader of salsa and Latin Jazz orchestras. With a discography that includes 36 titles, he has earned nine Grammy Awards and embraces the future of his music by blazing a distinctive musical path to the delight of fans across the globe. 

One of the most actively touring salsa and Latin jazz orchestras to date, tours have taken Palmieri to Europe, Asia, Australia, Latin America, North Africa and throughout the Caribbean. A true powerhouse of brilliance known for his astute arranging skills and historic compositions, he continues to thrill audiences with his legendary style.

"In Cuba, there was a development and crystallization of rhythmical patterns that have excited people for years," Palmieri said. "Cuban music provides the fundamental from which I never move. Whatever has to be built must be built from there. It’s a cross-cultural effect that makes magnificent music."

About Munyungo Jackson

Seasoned percussionist Munyungo Jackson can be found in virtually any musical setting - whether it’s funk, pop, jazz, Latin, reggae or traditional dance music of such countries as Nigeria, Senegal, Ghana, Haiti, Brazil and Cuba.

With more than 30 years of playing and a collection of over 400 percussion instruments, Jackson has performed with Miles Davis, Stevie Wonder, Sting, Kenny Loggins, Herbie Hancock, Dianne Reeves, the Zawinul Syndicate, George Howard, Ronnie Laws, The Temptations, Four Tops, The Supremes, Bennie Maupin, Bill Summers, Marcus Miller and dozens of others, including numerous ethnic music and dance troupes.

"It’s hard to study drums without studying the cultures from which they come," Jackson said. "Traditional percussion instruments were invented for the purpose of communication with nature and spirits as well as with other humans."

About Forró in the Dark

A collective of four New York-based Brazilian ex-pats, Forró in the Dark are updating the traditional the hip-swiveling, dance floor-filling, rural party music of Brazil’s northeastern states for the 21st century.

"In Brazil, forró literally means party," said band member Mauro Refosco. "It’s a gathering - a good time. The objective is to make people dance."

Which is exactly what Forró In The Dark has been doing since 2005 at its weekly residence at East Village nightspot Nublu, where its signature blend of down-home forró and urban cool have made them one of the city’s must-see buzz bands.

About the Ventura Music Festival

Founded in 1994, the Ventura Music Festival presents world renowned classical, jazz, and crossover musicians in various venues throughout Ventura and surrounding areas. Most of the venues have historical significance and provide warm and intimate settings for the world-class musical performances. Today, the festival stands as one of Ventura County’s signature events, attracting upwards of 10,000 concert-goers during the first 10 days of May.

Each year, the Ventura Music Festival’s Education Outreach Program presents live performances, stories, and interaction to nearly 4,000 local students through "Music in the Schools" presented by Artistic Director Nuvi Mehta.

Concerts on the horizon include return of master trumpeter and Latin legend Arturo Sandoval on February 12, 2011. The festival’s 17th season (April 28 through May 7, 2011) will feature a command performance by American violinist Mark O’Connor, The Festival Brass and winner of the 2009 Cleveland Piano Competition Martina Filjak. Additional artists will be announced for the complete season closer to the festival opening.

The Ventura Music Festival is a non-profit 501 (c) (3) organization. 

Information: (805) 648-3146 or

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Eddie Palmieri, Forro in the Dark and Munyungo Jac
  • Press Release Date: 10/3/2010
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