The term “Los Parranderos” is close in meaning to the expression “The Party Goers” and refers to happiness, laughter, and good disposition to enjoy life.
The group started back in 1996 when a small circle of friends, all of them Venezuelan immigrants, decided to revive the Venezuelan tradition of going door-to-door singing Christmas Carols to their neighbours. That’s how this amateur musical group saw its origins and started playing different rhythms of the Venezuela’s Christmas musical repertoire.
Nowadays, the group consists of about 16-20 participants and is currently under the direction of Ivan Contramaestre-Luces. Los Parranderos was previously directed by Maria Luces, whose dedication, knowledge, and patience have been instrumental in shaping this group of amateur musicians.
The group starts its performances in November and continues all through the Christmas season, having shows in Granville Island, Canada Place, Cypress Mountain, Local Schools, Grouse Mountain, Churches, Community Centres, Restaurants, Senior homes, and other venues around the Metro Vancouver area.
Los Parranderos are not musicians. Instead, they are “happy people with musical homesickness” whom are thrilled to share their rhythms and enthusiasm with Vancouverites, Canadians and their guests.
As an additional note, members of this group felt the need to expand its repertoire outside of Christmas themes and perform year-round with the additional aim to include music from the rest of Latin America as well.
The idea gave birth to several additional groups:
- Fusion Latina, Vancouver’s First Latin American Choir: It aimed at promoting music from all over the Latin America region. Sadly, Fusion Latina is no longer performing.
- Asi Somos, a quintet performing Afro-Venezuelan music and whom most recently appeared at the Opening Gala for the Vancouver Latin American Film Festival (VLAFF) 2014.
Some of our members also perform in other similar groups, which we want to acknowledge and give a shout-out:
- Viene Sonando, under the direction of the magnificent Marianella Ramos. This smaller choir has performed in smaller venues in Metro Vancouver and are not to be missed.
- SongPati Latin Band, Vancouver’s own Gaitas ensemble whom recently (2015) performed in Calgary as the opening artists for the legendary Latin music band Guaco