Luis Advis’ emblematic composition - brought to the stage for the first time in 1970 by the Quilapayún group - will commemorate its fiftieth anniversary with an important concert at Matucana 100.
La cantata Santa María is unanimously considered one of the most important musical plays in Chile. Created by Iquique-based musician Luis Advis between November 1969 and March 1970, it was performed for the first time by the Quilapayún group on July 1970 at the Teatro La Reforma in Santiago (today the Isidora Zegers Salon).
The play tells of one of the most important events in northern Chile’s history: the killing of workers in 1907 in the Santa María de Iquique school massacre, an event that was covered up until the release of this musical play. This tragedy immediately served as a call for action for Chilean workers, who began to set up trade unions and political parties to stand up to this kind of repression. Published shortly before the triumph of Salvador Allende and the Popular Unity party, this is the reason this play acquired its symbolism.
Fifty years after it was premiered, the legendary Chilean group Quilapayún will commemorate this as part of Tocatas Mil, with a concert on the Matucana 100 Terrace.
Cast and crew
Musical compositions: Luis Advis | Directed by: Eduardo Carrasco | Musicians: Ricardo Venegas (Farzan), Rubén Escudero, Fernando Carrasco, Ismael Oddó, Ricardo Venegas (Caito), Danilo Donoso | Guest musician: Ángela Acuña | Narrator: Alfredo Castro | Sound: Jorge Fortune | General producer: Alfredo Troncoso | Manager: Hernán Honores | Roadie: Juan Pablo Rojas
A key name in Chilean music
This group goes back to 1965, when Julio Numhauser and siblings Julio and Eduardo Carrasco formed a folk group called Quila (three) payún (beards). They began with Ángel Parra as their musical director and then Víctor Jara as artistic director. In 1967, Julio Numhauser left the group and was replaced by Guillermo ‘Willy’ Oddó, who, together with Carlos Quezada, became one of the emblematic voices of Quilapayún and of the New Chilean Song movement. That same year, they started touring internationally, enjoying their heyday while the Popular Unity party was in power. In fact, at the time of the military coup on September 11, 1973, they were in the middle of a concert in France, where they finally ended up in exile. They recorded the emblematic song El pueblo unido there in 1975, which became the song that represented this struggle worldwide. In 1989, they returned to Chile with a countrywide tour and started to rethink their music, which led to several years of silence (although they did release two albums, one in 1992 and the other in 1999). In 2002, they returned to the international stage, although infighting led to them splitting up. After several years of legal struggles over the use of the name Quilapayún, the group - under Eduardo Carrasco - reemerged in 2009 and is still going strong today.