Los Alumnos de San Juan has taken their drive to educate young people and the public at large about parang music to social media.
The nine-time National Parang Champions have created Parang Corner, an innovative video edutainment series that not only documents the journey of the genre but exclusively takes viewers behind the scenes into the private lives of the genre’s main practitioners.
“Parang Corner was designed to take the public on a journey through all things parang through the eyes of us, parranderos. They will get a chance to learn about parang music itself including the different styles that make up a traditional house parang, how these styles are structured and what they mean and represent in the context of the parang.
“There is also an educational aspect where some minor Spanish and cuatro music chords are taught. The series will also teach some historical aspects, where older parranderos are interviewed. We will also introduce the public to some local parang bands and go inside some fun parang limes,” explained Los Alumnos public relations officer Lauren Birot.
Birot said the series is in keeping with their overall mandate to preserve, maintain and keep the tradition alive, for the younger generation.
“Being a senior band in all respects, we think it is of utmost importance to return parang and the tradition of what it represents to the public. This series is for the young ones who want to learn about parang, the young adults who love and want to enhance their parang and the mature adults and older generation who love their parang and the tradition of Christmas. It basically serves all generations who have a love or interest in the art,” she said.
Los Alumnos has joined other leading parranderos in echoing the importance of parang music to this country’s cultural heritage. She says the time is at hand to take the knowledge of the art form to a wider audience.
“Parang needs to be seen as a greater part of our cultural heritage, that represents us a people and helps to make us as unique as we are, our hope is to assist in fostering that respect,” Birot concluded.
Parang Corner airs at 11.30 a.m. every Sunday on TTT, with repeats on Sunday evenings at 9.30 p.m.; Wednesdays at 5.30 p.m.; and Saturdays at 1.05 p.m. and 6 p.m. The series can also be found on Los Alumnos de San Juan’s social media platforms.