ILCC Announces Final Concerts for 2023 Chicago Latino Music Series

Group Mono Blanco will be playing at Instituto Cervantes on December 9th, 2023. An event by the International Latino Cultural Center of Chicago.

This content has been archived. It may no longer be relevant

The International Latino Cultural Center Announces the Final Concerts for this Year’s Chicago Latino Music Series

The International Latino Cultural Center of Chicago today announced the final concerts for this year’s Chicago Latino Music Series. Evolving from the Chicago Latino Music Festival, the series presents a wide overview of the many musical styles representing the Latino diaspora worldwide from the Spanish Medieval period to the music written and performed today across all genres and styles, including but not limited to classical, folk, afro-Latino and Latin Jazz. All concerts will take place at Instituto Cervantes, 31 W. Ohio St., Chicago.

On Sunday, November 12, the series will present a group that shares the Center’s Pan-Latino vision: Sol y Canto led by Puerto Rican/Argentine singer and percussionist Rosi Amador and New Mexican guitarist, singer and composer Brian Amador and featuring a guest appearance by musician, educator and Sones de México founder, Juan Díes. The following Sunday, November 19, the series will take audiences to Brazil through the music of Paulo Padilha e Bando, featuring a band of masterful samba musicians led by Padilha on guitar. For the series grand finale, on Saturday, December 9 son jarocho legends Mono Blanco will turn the Instituto Cervantes stage into a fandango with its vast repertory of traditional songs.

The International Latino Cultural Center will be announcing the first concerts for 2024 in December.

Following is the complete calendar. For ticket information on all concerts, visit



Sunday, November 12, 6 p.m.

Where: Instituto Cervantes, 31 W. Ohio St., Chicago

Admission: $20 ($15 for ILCC members)

Sol y Canto is the award-winning Pan-Latino ensemble led by Puerto Rican/Argentine singer and percussionist Rosi Amador and New Mexican guitarist, singer and composer Brian Amador. Featuring Rosi’s crystalline voice and Brian’s lush Spanish guitar and inventive compositions, Sol y Canto is known for making their music accessible to Spanish and non-Spanish speaking audiences of all ages. Their original songs are distinguished by poetic, often quirky lyrics set in a framework of varied musical styles with surprising twists. They can make you dance, laugh, cry and sigh all in one concert. With Brian’s commanding, intricate guitar playing, Rosi’s rhythmic drive on cajón and bongos, and liberal use of vocal improvisation, the duo often sounds like a much larger ensemble.

In this special performance, Rosi and Brian Amador welcome a new band member: cellist/vocalist Queralt Geralt from Barcelona. Along with her beautiful cello playing, Queralt will add her voice in 3-part harmonies. After graduating with honors from ESMUC (Barcelona) with a degree in classical music performance and music education, Queralt came to Boston to study contemporary styles performance and contemporary writing and production at Berklee College of Music. Her eclectic sound mixes jazz and classical music with traditional music from different parts of the world.

Juan Díes is a bass player, guitarist and singer, co-founder of Sones de México Ensemble, a Chicago-based award-winning band and non-profit organization established in 1994 to perform, record, teach and promote Mexico’s rich heritage of folk music and dance traditions. 

The Possible is a rotating a cappella collective of singers dedicated to improvisation. In their one-of-a-kind performances they create spontaneous compositions that rely primarily on their voices and weave together diverse singing styles, from jazz to gospel to experimental to folk. 


Sunday, November 19, 6 p.m.

Where: Instituto Cervantes, 31 W. Ohio St., Chicago

Admission: $20 ($15 for ILCC members)

Born in São Paulo, Paulo Padilha travels between samba and other Brazilian popular musical forms, dialoging between the traditional MPB and some pop elements and contemporary rhythms. His lyrics focus on stories about the urban lifestyle in a huge metropolis like São Paulo, in a sharp and good-humored way. He has been a music teacher for more than 25 years, teaching today at Vera Cruz private High School subjects like Brazilian song history in the 20th Century, music and rhythms workshops for children, adults and teenagers. Padilha has performed more than a hundred workshops of Brazilian music and about 25 concerts in 22 different cities in eleven different states, playing for more than 30.000 people from all ages.


Saturday, December 9; reception, 6 p.m. concert, 7 p.m.

Where: Instituto Cervantes, 31 W. Ohio St., Chicago

Admission: $30 ($25 for ILCC members)

Over nearly a half century as the leader of the legendary ensemble Grupo Mono Blanco, Gilberto Gutiérrez Silva has been the driving force behind the resurgent popularity of son jarocho, the signature folk music of the state of Veracruz on Mexico’s Gulf Coast. A movement as much as a band, Mono Blanco has also taught and inspired a new generation of musicians who are creating an international network of communities dedicated to this beloved music.

A fusion of indigenous, Spanish and African musical elements, Gutiérrez learned the rhythms and instrumentation in Mexico City, of all places, and in 1977 formed the band with his brother Ángel and their friend Juan Pascoe when he was just 19. They named the ensemble after the Indigenous legend of the White Monkey, a deity whose love of music and community is still celebrated at an annual festival. Grupo Mono Blanco sourced hard-to-find traditional instruments and began traveling throughout Veracruz seeking out master musicians who could teach them the music’s intricacies. They dug deep into the rural culture of Veracruz, bringing it to the forefront of musical life, and igniting a major peoples music movement that spread throughout Mexico, the United States, and beyond. Their music was recently featured in the soundtrack of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.


The International Latino Cultural Center of Chicago is a Pan-Latino, nonprofit, multidisciplinary arts organization dedicated to developing, promoting, and increasing awareness of Latino cultures among Latinos and other communities by presenting a wide variety of art forms and education including film, music, dance, visual arts, comedy, theater and culinary arts.

The Center prides itself for its outstanding multidisciplinary local and international cultural programming which spans Latin America, Spain, Portugal, and the United States. 

Born out of the Chicago Latino Film Festival, The International Latino Cultural Center of Chicago also produces other programs, including the Chicago Latino Music Series (formerly known as the Latino Music Festival), which is celebrating its 17th edition this year; Film in the Parks, also in its 17th season; the monthly Reel Film Club, already in its 14th year; and many others. All in all, the audience has grown from 500 people in 1985 for the first Chicago Latino Film Festival to more than 70,000 (Latinos and non-Latinos) who enjoy the year-round multidisciplinary cross-cultural exchanges offered by the Center.