NATIONAL ARTIST EXPRESSED HERSELF THROUGH HER CULTURE AND HERITAGE BRINGING THE BEST OF PUERTO RICO
|Lydia Perez, Performing Arts|
Lydia Perez – Born in San Juan, Capital of Puerto Rico, she grew up in the town of “La Central” or “Hoyo Mula de Canóvanas”. She graduated from the Inter-American University, Magna Cum Laude, in June of 1989, with a Bachelor's in Business Administration. Four months later, she and her husband decided to move to Attleboro, Massachusetts. A year later, her husband bought a house in Warwick, Rhode Island. She has been living in Rhode Island for 21 years. Lydia is a highly accomplished and dynamic performer. She presents traditional music, workshops and productions from Puerto Rico and the Caribbean.
In 1994, she and her husband founded Puertorriqueños Unidos, Inc., a non profit organization. In 2004, Puertorriqueños Unidos, Inc. changed it's name to the Puerto Rican Institute for Arts and Advocacy, or PRIAA, and became an outstanding organization with high expectations from the Puerto Rican, Latino, and Rhode Island societies.
|Lydia Perez in Theater (Teatro V!da), Springfield, MA|
I was a Vejigante in 1995, see the video: click here
|In the Education of RI, Alfred Lima Elementary School|
|Latino Honor Night, Cranston East High School|
She has been working directly with the Puerto Rican community in "Fiesta de Pueblo" in Central Falls for eight consecutive years. She also has working with the arts curriculum education in local elementary, middle and high schools with Caribbean history. She is an arts educator and artisan in regards in making traditional masks. With her multiple discipline in the arts, she assembled smaller “Bomba” and "Plena" groups with children and youths throughout the state. She was volunteer worker as an artistic director for the Art section in American News, a New England newspaper. She documented her work and shared the outcome of success with the community.
She has worked with numerous non profit organizations, after school programs, galleries, museums, Department of Tourism, both in the State of Rhode Island and in Puerto Rico, and with the Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueño. She has taught at the Springfield School Department in the Explorations in Puerto Rican Culture from 2007 to 2009, during which her Caribbean Island Programs were a success. Lydia and Yoruba2 brings a variety of Puerto Rican and Caribbean culture to school, universities, and communities bringing to the public the authentic folklore of her beautiful island.
Lydia received a total of twenty five awards as an Individual Artist in which seven of them, as a Traditional Artist fellow, including 2010 and 1998 Runner Up Fellowship from RISCA, the 2000 Fellowship in Traditional Arts from RISCA and the 2000 Rhode Island Foundation Fellowship. The 2001 Individual Award from the International Gallery for Heritage and Culture.
|In Bryant University International awareness|
Ms. Lynne McCormack, director of Art, Culture & Tourism in Providence, said: “Lydia contributes to promote the advancement of cultural opportunity and economic prosperity for the City of Providence and its residents”. Lydia brings to Rhode Islanders energy, harmony, happiness, diversity and respect.
"Lydia is an extremely talented artist and ambassador for the AfroCaribbean culture. Her knowledge and ability to entertain while teaching is legendary” October 20, 2011 Pablo Rodriguez, MD, President and CEO, Women's Care.
“Lydia is a highly motivated, energetic, enthusiastic, innovative and dedicated artist/arts administrator. She has done a tremendous job of education, community outreach and promotion of Puerto Rican Culture in the region.” October 20, 2011; Steven Pennell, Coordinator Urban Arts and Culture, Univ. of Rhode Island.
"Lydia Perez brings a dynamic level of professionalism combined with deep creativity to all her work. She is a natural educator and a master dancer who enlivens others as she works" .October 26, 2011, Paddy Bowman, Director, Local Learning: The National Network for Folk Arts in Education.
Groups brought to Rhode Island through PRIAA:
-The National Puerto Rican children group “La Rondalla de Puerto Rico”
-The National group of “Los Pleneros de la 21”
Sponsored by City of Providence
Giovanni Lugo y “Guarayson” Quarter
Sponsored by FirstWorkKids
Groups brought to Rhode Island through PRIAA, in collaboration with the Puerto Rican Blackstone Valley Committee:
-The International group of Jibaro, MAPEYE
-The International Master William Cepeda and AfroBoricua
-The International player of “Cuatro Puertorriqueño” Jose Gonzalez
-Freddy Moreno Orchestra
-Roberto Cepeda and Jose Rivera accompanied by Yoruba 2
-Miguel Amestica and Los Plenero del Coco
-Yujiké Group with Musica Folkorica de Puerto Rico
-Jorge Arce Grupo Humano
-Van Lester and Orchestra
Sponsored by Rhode Island State Council on the Arts and New England for the Arts
|Santos de Puerto Rico Exhibit|
Past & Present: Santos of Puerto Rico, a scultural exhibition that showcases a unique form of Puerto Rican art and culture-with traditions dating back to the sixteenth century, after the Spanish colonization of Puerto Rico. Thank to the efforts of the Puerto Rican Institute for Arts of Rhode Island and the Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueña of San Juan, Puerto Rico, more than 100 objects has been exhibited for the public throughout the state. Santos was presented at: Rhode Island Foundation, Providence Public Library in Providence, Warwick Art Museum, RI, and The Rhode Island Historical Society Museum of Work and Culture, Woonsocket, RI. PRIAA has brought to Rhode Island artisans such as: Jesus and Margarita Torres (Fish Scale Jewelry); Master Jose Lazzu (Coconut Jewelry); Jesus Cepeda, Carlos Cruz Cruz and Juan Fuentes, Master and artisan of Bomba and Plenas Instruments; Norberto Martell Morales, Reinaldo Figueroa, Mabel Oquendo and Ángel Sánchez, makers of Vejigantes figurines and masks; and Tony and Adruey Ayala (Saint carving from “La Gubia Dorada”.
The Puerto Rican Institute for the Arts and Advocacy Inc., has received from the Rhode Island Foundation the 2007 Award of Economic and Community Development Award as a fiscal agent for Latino Public Radio (LPR) to help further establish an important communication tool for the Latino communities in Rhode Island.
|Caribbean Arts Program in Rhode Island|
The contribution of Lydia Perez in Puerto Rican arts has brought to the City of Providence a great diversity and respect for the Puerto Rico culture. The National Puerto Rican children group “La Rondalla de Puerto Rico”, the “Guarayson” Quarter, and the International groups “Los Pleneros de la 21” and “Mapeye” are examples of high quality Puerto Rican music which has seen exposure in Downtown Providence.
Lydia has had performed in such prestigious venues as:
-Veteran Memorial Auditorium
-Water Place Park
-Sound Section Black Repertory
-Rhode Island School of Design, Farago Museum
-Providence Art Club
-Roger William Casino
-Providence Children Museum
-URI Feinstein Campus, Providence Campus
-Rhode Island College
-Rhode Island Conventional Center
-Common Fence Music, Newport
Around Rhode Island and others States:
-URI Johnston campus, Johnston, RI
-Bryant University, North Smithfield, RI
-Warwick Museum, Warwick, RI
-Rhode of the Pawtuxet, Cranston, RI
-Jasper Rand Art Museum, Westfield Athenaeum Library, Westfield, MA
-Foxwoods Casino and Hotel, Massachusetts
-Hartford Convention Center, Hartford, CT
-Tampa Performing Arts Center, FL
-Georgia Performing Arts Center, Georgia
click to see more: Where we have been
She has had performed with others groups and Individual artists such as:
-Carlos Cruz Cruz, Rhode Island
-Jesus Cepeda, Famillia Cepeda de Puerto Rico- Rhode Island and Puerto Rico
-Juan Fuentes, Rhode Island and Puerto Rico
-Jorge Emmanuelli Bomba Jam- Orlando, Florida
-Tito Ayala, Familia Ayala, Rhode Island and Bridgeport
-Joseito Rivera, Member of Plenero de la 21, Rhode Island and Bridgeport
-Jorge Arce, Rhode Island and Maine
-Freddy and Wilfredo Moreno, Rhode Island and Boston
-Miguel Almestica y Los Pleneros del Coco, Woscester and Maine
-William Cepeda AfroBoricua, Jazz, Rhode Island and Holioke, MA
-Roberto Cepeda, Rhode Island
-Lorena Garay, Rhode Island
-Irene I-shea Shaikly, Rhode Island
-Victor M. Sterling, Springfield, MA
-Obanilu Ire, Springfield, MA and New Jersey
-Heshima Moja and Ofrecimiento group, Springfield, MA
-Rene and Ahmed Gonzalez, Springfield, MA
-Waleska Santiago, Caribbean Curator from Springfield, Rhode Island
-Magdalena Gomez, Co-Founder Teatro V!ida, Springfield, MA
-Manolito Mareina, Rhode Island
-Alex La Salle and Alma Moyo, Bombazo, Segunda de la Quimbamba, New Jersey
-CUBA as a representation of Baile Folklorico Iglesia de Lukumi of New York
|The Republican News, MA|
|El Diario, New York. |
See the link: Here
Lydia is Member of National Association for Latinos Arts and Culture (NALAC), Chair of Rhode Island Latino Network, member of "Coalición de Artistas de Puerto Rico", an artistic associate with Teatro Vida in Springfield, MA, a Teaching -Artist of Hartford Performs in Connecticut and the Rhode Island Teaching-Artist Center, (RITAC). She is in the roster of Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, (RISCA) and the Creative Ground of New England for the Arts, (NEFA). She was a member of the Cambridge Who's Who in Boston, commissioner for eight years in the Warwick Affirmative Action Commission and four years with the RI Governor’s Hispanic Affairs commission.
PRIAA is a member of Creative Ground of NEFA, Hartford Performs, Connecticut an National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures, (NALAC).
The Caribbean Arts Program is a program in which we engage school teachers, children, youth and parents in our Caribbean tradition. We teach different form of rhythms hailing from the Caribbean Sea using the traditional instruments while incorporating other traditions, like dance, mask making, costume showcasing, and poems reciting.
2014- Group of Plena Carnival of Providence CityArts, Summer section
See click here video:
Photos 2014: Click hereFig.1
|Exploration the Puerto Rican Culture, Program, Springfield, MA|
Fig; 1 and 2 are example of Caribbean arts program from Rhode Island into Exploration in Puerto Rican Culture Program in Springfield, MA. Exploration in Puerto Rican Culture program, in Springfield was a partnership between the Springfield Public School and the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a Commonwealth of Massachusetts agency. The program was funded by an Arts Model Development and Dissemination Grant from the U.S. Department of Education.
AFRO-PUERTO RICAN MUSIC
L to R: Yidell Rivera, Lydia Perez and Luis Robertico Arias
YORUBA 2. Bomba group
*Bomba is an African style of music and dance that flourished along the coastal region and sugar cane fields of Puerto Rico, where a lead singer chants short vocal calls to which the group sings fixed responses; sometimes described to be a challenge between the lead dancer and the lead drummer, where the drum has to follow the movements of the dancer with a synchronized beat.
Yidell Rivera teaches the individual rhythms of Plena
Vejigantes Masks from Loiza, PR
**Vejigante: Mythical figures from town festivals and folklore in Loiza and Ponce, Puerto Rico. Characterized as evil spirits meant to scare people back into the church, they symbolize the Moors that St. James, patron saint of Spain, had fought and vanquished. Masks made from coconut and paper maché s come in may bright colors and costumes with bat-like wings further the frightful appearance of the Vejigante. Their name derives from "vejiga" meaning bladder and "jigante" meaning giant due to the custom of blowing up and painting cow bladders which are carried by Vejigantes. See our Masks:
See our Video of the 2014 Vejigante Exhibit. Click here
see our Vejigantes masks: Click here