Salgado's 'Candela' has a new life in Perú


“As an artist I don’t want to do just art. I want to give something, I want to make a difference.” With those words Luis Salgado explains his current status as a director, a producer and a creator. This actor from Puerto Rico is best known for his role in shows on Broadway such as In The Heights or Women on The Verge… But right now he’s very busy in the creative part: he is currently in pre-production for a National Tour of Fame On 42nd Street in Perú, he has directed and choreographed DC7- The Roberto Clemente Story Off Broadway, and he has another Project with Revolución Latina to open in October called Amigo Duende, a show for children. Appart from that, he has started investing in new shows on Broadway. You can hear his brain ticking when you chat with him about his future, but that dynamic brain is in sync with the rhythm of a heart full of love for theatre and life.

However nowadays all his strength is focused on Candela: Fuerza y Pasión. “It’s crazy: we has just played it in Club Regatas on March 2nd, for a full house of 1,700 people, in an open air venue,” says Salgado. “But on March 10th we’ll do it again in Teatro RIMAC de Asía, in a proscenium theatre.” This is a totally new version of the show he presented in September 2011 in Peru. “Candela is a great opportunity that came up after meeting Vanía Masías, when she brought his group of young dancers from D1, to the Festival de Coreógrafos with R.Evolución Latina last year. Through her I met Lucia Navarro, a peruvian producer, who saw my work and presented me a small show called Candela. It was a musical revue played in a theatre of no more than 70 seats. I helped her creating a story with the original music of her show, because I loved the score.”

Candela: Fuerza y Pasión is based on a true story: the story of a woman called María del Carmen Rimachi, also known as La Candela. She was born in Venezuela, but has Spanish gypsy and peruvian roots. She came from a great blend of tradition and culture. She could dance folk style in Peru perfectly well, but sang with a “flamenco” voice. She left an incredible legacy, but above all, she broke many stereotypes and labels. “When I came to Peru I did a research – I went to the jungle, I went to Lima, Chincha,… I met all kind of people: from the richest to the poorest. I made a social and historical research, I studied this country to understand it so I could communicate it in the show, through the dance, through the singing and the acting, and although the singers and dancers are separated on stage they all tell the story of ‘La Candela’,” explains director Luis Salgado. “I want people here to think ‘I can be more like Mari Carmen’ and to live passionately and integrated.”

Salgado's 'Candela' has a new life in Perú

And this experience doesn’t end here. His dream is to bring Candela to New York on March 2013. “I brought the young dancers from D1, and this is a domino effect: this will be a greater challenge, a different show. I will have to think it again, to make it bigger and more ambicious.” When he first started the project last year the budget had a limit of 20,000 dollars, and when it went to ZUM theatre in Lima it reached 200,000. “It requires a bigger responsability, and to have more fears, but thanks to Pura Vibra, who worked with Salgado Productions, I could be as creative as I wanted to. Now that it was a great success, I want to share it with the latin community, specially the peruvians in NYC.”

As a producer, Luis Salgado has started his new own company, Salgado Productions, and investing on Broadway allowed him to be involved and worked with great producers like Ken Davenport. Luis is part of the People Of Godspell, a group of investors of this new revival, produced by Davenport. “I have my feet on the ground more than ever, I mean, now I’ve proved myself I can do it, and in the process I had to think a lot. I don’t want to invest just to be a Broadway producer, but to work side by side with people who knows, and I want to learn everything from marketing, vision, technicians,… I want to grow in different perspectives.”

He has gone from dancer, to choreographer, from being onstage to be a director and producer, but above all to listen and understand what his community wants to see. “I don’t lose sight of the social context where we live in. I’m an advisor in VIVA BROADWAY and I’ve told them that the most important thing to sell tickets to the latin community on Broadway is to give them products that they can relate to. The show most latin people has seen is Fiddler On the Roof, because of the tradition, and because they want to understand about community, family and country.”

He was only 9 years old when he started his life in theatre. And now he has grown to bring the message of his association R.Evolución Latina to every corner of the world, as far as he can reach: “Dare To Go Beyond.”

Web Oficial de Luis Salgado 

Web Oficial de R.Evolución Latina

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From This Author Juan-Jose Gonzalez

Juan-Jose Gonzalez He was born in Zarzalejo, Madrid (1983). He studied Medicine in Universidad Complutense, and he's always been an avid theater-goer, specially musical theatre. He's attended (read more...)

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