Yvonne H. Valdez South Florida Sun-Sentinel
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — On Sunday, Little Havana hosts one of the largest Hispanic celebrations of its kind in the United States: Calle Ocho Music Festival.
The annual one-day festival features street vendors, music, folk dancing and plenty of entertainment for all ages along Miami’s Calle Ocho from southwest 12th to southwest 27th avenues in 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Yotuel Romero, co-author of “Patria y Vida,” the now iconic song of the Cuban diaspora, is the king of Carnival Miami 2022.
“‘Patria y Vida’ has become an anthem that has fueled a movement of expression through music and art for the Cuban people and there is no better place than the Calle Ocho Music Festival to continue to elevate the message,” said Alexander Pérez, president of the Kiwanis Club of Little Havana, which is organizing the event.
“Patria y Vida” was created and performed by Yotuel with Alexander Delgado and Randy Malcom (Gente de Zona), Descemer Bueno, Maykel Osorbo and El Funky.
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“I am honored to have been chosen as the 2022 Miami Carnival King,” said Yotuel Romero. “This festival has a long history of recognizing pillars of South Florida’s Latino community and being named and part of a select group of other iconic Cuban artists such as Celia Cruz (1984), Gloria Estefan (1988) and Willy Chirino (1993) is truly humbling. I look forward to celebrating the return of Calle Ocho and am grateful for the opportunity to further amplify the voice of the Cuban people and their fight for a free Cuba.
Yotuel will perform after performances by El Funky, Chris Tamayo, DJ Jammin J and Karibe Kings.
The Calle Ocho Music Festival is considered the largest Latin music festival in the United States. It has been the platform for the greatest musicians in the Hispanic market such as Pitbull, Nicky Jam and Maluma, who made their artistic debuts in Calle Ocho.
The music festival is part of Carnival Miami, which officially kicked off in late February and held several events. In addition to the music festival, the 40th edition of the dominoes tournament also takes place on Sunday.