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“As a producer, I can say with confidence that this a show that everyone should see.”

Music Producer and Co-Founder of Guataca Ernesto Rangel reflects back on attending his first ever Shen Yun performance.

At first, I mainly attended the Shen Yun Performing Arts for my daughter, but it didn’t take long for the sights and the sounds to overtake me. Possessing a deep love for music and a great appreciation for Chinese history and culture, I was quickly enamored by the joy of the experience. It was an especially special performance for me to witness as a producer. Seeing the talent and joy that exuded from the performers helped me to frame my love for music in the right context again. Yes, the music industry is a business, but let’s not forget that it is also an art; primarily so, too.

One of his favorite moments of the show was the erhu—an ancient and distinct Chinese dating back approximately 4,00 years. The instrument only has two strings, so it’s truly amazing to see the emotion that the musicians can convey with such a unique instrument. Everything about the performance was spectacular, and it truly inspired me to always pursue excellence with Guataca Nights.

The work that we’ve been doing lately with Guataca has been truly amazing and exciting. Guataca Nights continues to expand, and we are continually finding talent from different parts of the world. One of the most exciting things to me is the realization of the talent in the world that this project has brought to my attention. Everywhere we go, we find new musicians with incredible talent; unique, passionate, and highly-skilled. It’s such a joy to find musicians and spotlight their talents. It’s also great to gather musicians from different cultures and genres and watch so many people speak the universal love language of music.

In fact, the next Guataca Nights performance features a cultural encounter of Caribbean rhythm with Sentimientos de Mi Tierra and Son de Negros (Venezuela) on May 18. I love that we’re getting out of our comfort zone with different genres and artists. Guataca Nights is about the inclusive experience of music—something that crosses political, cultural, and linguistic barriers.