I am a parent of one of the Guarangitos, the La
Peña Afro Peruvian La Peña Afro Peruvian Youth
ensemble. My daughter was born in the United
States but strongly identifies herself as a
Peruvian. At 8 years old she lives away from her
mother’s country so we as parents struggle to
find ways to keep her attached to her cultural
roots. She craves information about Peru and her
mother’s country, in fact she developed her own
saying, “How do you know who you are, if you
don’t know your before?”
Last year we were overjoyed when we found out
that La Peña was putting together the Afro
Peruvian Youth ensemble. After the first class
she stated that this was her favorite activity of
all the extra-curricular classes she attends. Her
teachers Gabriela and Pedro were extremely
knowledgeable and patient, always letting the
kids know not only what the dances, instruments
and songs were, but also why they were important.
The kids (and the teachers) worked many long
hours to produce a presentation which culminated
in a wonderful performance this June at La Peña.
Our daughter also had a chance to perform with
the larger group, De Rompe y Raja, an experience
that she will never forget. We would like to
extend our deepest thanks to Gabriela and Pedro
as well as the other guest performers for their
caring and dedication.
Thank you to La Peña for bringing such wonderful
experiences and educational opportunities to the
Bay Area. It is our sincerest wish that this
program be extended and available in the fall.
Thanks again to La Peña for existing and for
having the determination and foresight to extend
the beauty of the Latin culture to our area. My
apologies for taking so long to let you know how
much we enjoyed this program and what is has
meant to our family.
All the best,
Fred Kaye and Elena Aranda parents of Natasha Kaye-Aranda