Our final day in Santa Clara

July 13, 2016

Today was our final day in Santa Clara for our tour. I awoke at the crack of 8:30 for breakfast at the Los Caneyes hotel, and by 10:00 we embarked on our guided tour of the city. Santa Clara is known as the city of Che Guevara. It is home to his monument and the […]

Santa Clara is a busy and bustling town

The center of Santa Clara is a busy and bustling town, unlike the more provincial towns of Cienfuegos and Trinidad, where tourism is more prevalent. Due to the limited time we had, we supporters received a brief tour of the central plaza, where there were attacks from decades ago. With just enough time for a […]

Supporters group excursions and explorations

July 12, 2016

Hornist Katie Dunkle”s mom Liz Dunkle here again on Day 5 of the supporters group. Since our arrival, our group has acquainted with one another, going on excursions and explorations, learning about the rich history and culture, indulging in some shopping, even wayward souls in search of beaches and salsa dancing. We are becoming friends, […]

Concert in the Teatro La Caridad

The audience was the best yet! Packed house, everyone dressed up for the occasion, and extremely enthusiastic. One local audience member who spoke fantastic English said that he has seen five youth orchestra perform at the Teatro La Caridad in Santa Clara, and the the Oakland Symphony Youth Orchestra was the most refined, energetic, and […]

Cuba: Land of humidity, heat, and faulty toilettes.

July 11, 2016

The cultural differences which Anoosh and I have experienced so far have been vast and  shocking. Today we traveled to the beautiful city of Trinidad. We were given four hours to explore the cobblestone streets and colonial architecture, during which we had the opportunity to observe—and in some cases become acquainted with—the locals of the […]

Day two of the supporters group Cuban adventure!

July 9, 2016

Hola, this is from French Hornist Katie Dunkle’s mom, Liz Dunkle. This is day two of the supporters group Cuban adventure paralleling our OYO musical tour. We are a group of 36 family, friends, and supporters, guided by our lovely local guides Luiz and Lucie, as we explore the capital city of Havana, and surrounding […]

Sound Check

“Soundcheck in the beautiful (and VERY humid!) Teatro Tomas Terry in the city of Cienfuegos, featuring our brilliant violin soloist from the Cuban National Orchestra, Ariel Sarduy.”

In Cuba

When we first woke up, we were hot like nothing you could experience in California. The air, being so hot and humid, sticks to your skin and weighs down your body. After fully waking up and applying liberal amounts of sunscreen and spraying so much bug spray so that the floor became slippery, we ate […]

Morning in Havana before traveling to Cienfuegos

Today was our final morning in Havana before traveling to Cienfuegos. After a hearty breakfast of French toast and pineapple (but not together), we boarded the buses for the three hour ride through the balmy Cuban countryside. Havana, with its more intimate, cluttered streets, contrasted with the double-wide bustling roads of Cienfuegos. The two sides […]