Cuban band plus visiting educators step up the salsa at free outdoor concert

Rebecca Bailey

Septeto Santiaguero, playing classic Cuban dance music.

It was an unbeatable combination: Septeto Santiaguero, playing classic Cuban dance music, and Mexican educators on the Dartmouth campus as participants in the Inter-American Partnership for Education (IAPE),  an intensive workshop on English language instruction run by Dartmouth’s Rassias Center. Fluent in salsa and other Latin dance styles, the young IAPE participants helped turn Septeto’s July 26 free outdoor concert on the Dartmouth Green into an all-ages, all-dance-abilities party. Let’s hope for the same perfect weather and great vibe on Wednesday, August 9, when Rocky Dawuni brings his uplifting, Ghana-infused reggae to the Green for the final Summer Free For All concert for 2017! And on August 16, cool’s the rule as the series’ second free family-friendly film, Bedknobs and Broomsticks, is shown in air-conditioned Spaulding Auditorium.

Sponsored by the Jack & Dorothy Byrne Foundation, Free For All is a Hop Community Venture Initiative program, aimed at lowering real and perceived barriers to participation in the arts. More than 60 percent of series attendees surveyed say they have never—or only occasionally—visited the Hop. Said a concert attendee, it’s “refreshing to have events like this in the area… Doesn’t matter if you are rich or poor, [people] just come and be themselves.”