Carnaval dishes up Latino flavor
Each year for the past fourteen years, Peruvian native Manuel Molina has flown in renowned musicians from around the globe to bring a taste of Carnaval to Denver. "I do this to feed my soul," he says. Molina's eighteen-piece orchestra will heat up tonight's proceedings alongside a veritable parade of singers, dancers, percussionists and masquerade artists. "It's not like when you go to Vegas," Molina says. "Carnaval is more real, like when you are in the streets of Peru and you feel the people."
Modeled after Mardi Gras, Carnaval features dance competitions, costume contests and a balloon drop. Molina says his festival is unique because it focuses less on traditional salsa and more on broader Latin American musical styles. "The most important thing is to get a touch of the world," he adds. "I'm just a little guy trying to do something. I'm not the House of Blues, but the music will be hot, we'll party all night, and the rhythm is going to get you."
The fiesta starts at 7:30 p.m. at the Holiday Inn DIA Convention Center, 15500 East 40th Avenue; tickets are $25 to $35. For details, call 303-627-7431 or visit www.manuelmolina.com. -- Kity Ironton