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January 13, 2010


a man and a dog outside
A picture of Eric Torres Alvarez' grandfather Nilo with his dog in Cuba.

Feeling Cuban

Eric Torres Alvarez grew up in Pittsburgh, the son of Cuban immigrants. When his parents talked of their homeland, it was with anger - they had fled Cuba because they were anti-revolutionary and anti-Castro. When Eric was in his early twenties, against his family's wishes, he decided to visit Cuba to make up his own mind about his parents' homeland. In the process he met his grandfather for the first time. The trip affected him profoundly and Eric has been back several times over the last 20 years. While he now supports the revolution - much to his parents' dismay - Eric's trips and embracing of his Cuban heritage have also led to self-discovery and meaningful, if difficult, conversations with his family.


"La Comparsa," by Ernesto Lecuona from the album The Ultimate Collection and "Rapsodia Cubana," performed by the pianist Thomas Tirino for the album Lecuona: Complete Piano Music, Vol. 3.

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