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Mérida Fest 2018 celebrates the city’s 476 years

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La Garfield is among the most anticipated acts appearing during Mérida Fest 2018. Photo: Facebook

Mérida, Yucatán — Celebrating the city’s 476th anniversary, an 18-day festival of more than 150 varied cultural activities begins Thursday, Jan. 4.

Mérida Fest 2018 features 600 local artistic creators and guests from other parts of the country and the world.

All events are free and open to the public. Download the full program here.

Among the most anticipated events are the International Festival of Lights (FILUX) from Jan. 4 to 7, a tour of 22 works of art made with light; a concert by Margarita, “The Goddess of the Cumbia,” 8 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 14 at the Plaza Grande; and the closing show featuring Mexico’s singer/musician Caloncho and the Guadalajara band La Garfield at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 21, also at the Plaza Grande.

As part of the official celebrations, at 9 p.m. Friday, Jan. 5, more than 250 artists will sing from the Santa Lucía park to the Municipal Palace colonnade for an event called “Alborada.”

Academic events include “The African population in Mérida during Colonialism,” “Memoirs of the Arab East Conference: The Influence of the Arabic Language and Poetry in Spanish” and the talk “The Importance of Melipona Bees as Intangible Cultural Heritage of the Yucatán Peninsula,” as well as the screening of the documentary: “Yarn” by Una Lorenzen.

La Cúpula Cultural Center plans an exhibition of painting, engraving, sculpture and screen printing by Demián Flores. Meanwhile, at the Olimpo, organizers will present acrobatic performances by Lux: Circus Arts and musicians Gina Osorno, Gabor Vörös, Ana María Alcocer and Darío Herrera. A screening of the silent film classic, “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari,” will be accompanied by live music by Fonométrico music group, at the Olimpo.

Santi and Tuğçe, musicians from Paraguay and Turkey respectively, will present melodies with global Afro Latin rhythms and electronic dance rhythms at the Teatro Peón Contreras.

A Dance Marathon at the Municipal Palace, concert of Circuito Sureste Records and auteur film series such as La Nueva Ola del Cine Francés are other highlights.

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