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The sights, sounds and culinary traditions of Argentina come to Arlington, Virginia, on Saturday, May 11, at the 32nd annual Festival Argentino.
One of the only Argentine festivals in the United States, this year’s event features more than 40 performing artists spanning an array of genres – folkloric music, pop, tango and more.
Lovers of Latin and world music will be thrilled with the exciting entertainment lineup, which includes singer-songwriter and renowned harmonica virtuoso Fabricio Rodriguez and artists of traditional Argentine dance, Viviana Rettori and José Rojas. Held in the theater and grounds of Arlington’s Kenmore Middle School , a 10-minute ride from the Ballston Metro station, the event draws hundreds of visitors from the local community and capital region.
In addition to lively music and dance, visitors will be able to savor a variety of Argentine foods, including the first beef imported to the United States from Argentina in 17 years. Famous for its unique tenderness and rich flavor, Argentina’s Angus flank steak is sure to be a festival favorite. Authentic empanadas, sizzling choripán (chorizo sausage and bread) sandwiches and traditional Argentinian cookies, alfajores, round out the menu.
Festival Argentino opens at 4 p.m., inviting guests to visit 30 exhibitors. Sample chocolate from Bolivia, browse Peruvian arts and crafts and visit with Spanish writers from across the capital region who are showcasing their books. From 4:15 – 5:15 p.m., you can take tango lessons from professional dancer Luis Angel from the Embassy of Argentina. Or learn traditional Argentine folk dances from performers Viviana Rettori and José Rojas. The evening’s entertainment lineup kicks off at 5:45 p.m.
“We produce this festival with our heart, and we try to share it with everyone,” said Daniel Manzoni who has organized the event for 32 years. The Washington Post paid tribute to him in 2012, saying “the festival has proved to be an enduringly singular creation, a quirky institution founded on one man’s passion and pain.”
We produce this festival with our heart, and we try to share it with everyone. Daniel Manzoni
Guitars, powerful drums and the songbook of Argentine folklore will transcend the borders at Arlington’s Festival Argentino. Tickets are available through the event website, and purchases include automatic entry into a Copa Airlines raffle for round-trip tickets to Argentina.
Author: Kathleen Murphy