The band arrived in Havana on the morning of 13 May and were then shuttled by coach on a 16-hour, cross-country road trip that eventually landed the ensemble in Santiago, a province in the southeastern part of the country, some 500 miles from the capital.
Local Motion delivered three “spellbinding” performances during the festival, according to all accounts.
The band also featured well-known local musician Burman Scott, who joined them on stage for several songs.
“We were quite pleased with the reception and had the privilege of having been invited to return for another festival in July, which we are looking forward to,” said Jean Eric Smith, band leader for Local Motion.
Smith, who is also president of the Cayman Music and Entertainment Association, said there was a lot to learn from the Cuba Disco for this year’s upcoming Muzaic Festival.
“This has been a lesson in how we can further develop our own arts and music festival, known as the Muzaic,” which takes place 1-4 July.
Cayman has been represented at the Cuba Disco in the past through an initiative of CMEA that began six years ago.
Jazz-infused ensemble Intransit performed there in 2005.
“The CMEA now intends to follow up on this initiative and plans to make this a yearly calendar event on the yearly local music calendar. One idea is to send to Cuba winners of the yearly Battle of the Bands, which has also been revised and is now slated for 26 December,” Smith said.
Local Motion’s trip to Cuba was sponsored by the Ministry of Culture, the Cayman Music and Entertainment Association, Cayman Airways, APS Ltd and the Department of Tourism.