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Plácido Domingo Praises Juanes’s ‘Courage’ and Says That He Wants to Sing in Cuba

By Dialogo
September 08, 2009

Spanish tenor Plácido Domingo, visiting the Caribbean beach resort of Cartagena de Indias, praised the “courage” of Colombian singer Juanes in going through with the concert planned for 20 September in Havana and said that he would also like to sing on the island. “I think that Juanes has taken a positive attitude and is a very courageous person who deserves everyone’s support,” Domingo indicated to reporters upon arriving in the prestigious Caribbean port, where he will offer an exclusive concert on Saturday. “I’ve been invited to sing in Cuba many times, but it was many years ago, and my friends over there (Cubans living in Miami) told me not to go, but I believe that the conditions are different now,” the singer added, going on to say that “there is nothing worse than exile, that a person can’t walk through the streets that belong to him.” With regard to the blast of criticism levied at Juanes by a segment of the Cuban exiles in Miami for giving a concert in Havana, Domingo commented, “I understand the exiles’ reasons, but so many years have gone by that it’s time for us all to cooperate, for everyone to be able to travel everywhere without problems.” “For this reason I believe that it takes a lot of courage to put up with a negative reaction, as Juanes is doing, but he’s doing what he’s doing in the name of peace. Am I going to live all my life without singing in Cuba? It would be a great happiness for me to be able to walk through the streets of Havana,” he concluded. Miami exile organizations accuse Juanes of supporting the communist government with his “Peace without Borders” concert, which will be held in Havana’s Revolution Square. Juanes recently denounced threats against himself and his family as a result of the concert, but his agent, Fernán Martínez, dispelled rumors about the suspension of the recital. The author of “La camisa negra” (“The Black Shirt”), who says that he wants to help build a bridge between the United States and Cuba with his concert, will perform accompanied by Spaniard Miguel Bosé, Puerto Rican Olga Tañón, and Cuban Silvio Rodríguez, a founder of the Nueva Trova (New Ballad) movement, among others.