Charango Master Jaime Torres Tours Australia

OK before I get into anything, I just want to say blogging is hard, OK. It’s just hard.  When your fulltime and your freelance jobs are both demanding, when you seem to come down with something every other week (recently I felt like Patient Zero.  You know the one) and when it’s just hard to keep up, the blogging kind of … it’s hard.

Then the Paris attacks happened.  A lot of the accompanying media commentary noted that our sympathy was much more visible for the Parisians rather than the people of Lebanon or Syria. When we were meant to focus on the insanity of targeting innocent people, wherever in the world you may be, instead the media (and many people) debated on “who deserved our sympathy the most”.

I think a terrorist attack in any form in any country is just so inconceivable for many Australians because we’ve not had anything here to that extent.  I can’t even fathom it.  I want to believe we will come together as a nation if a dreaded event like that ever happened, but in the meantime, what I want to focus on is the fact that we’re all from many different parts of the world and products of many different cultures, and it’s our humanity that makes us similar.  When we lose sight of that, then we’re divided.


OK, but I digress.  I say that a lot.  And I’ll say this again: blogging is HARD.  However, I’m making a concerted effort from here on in to just keep going, and with that in mind, I want to bring you … Charango. It’s pretty cool – like a South American Ukelele music.  Check it out here:

Pretty chill, yeh?  If you’ve ever taken a trip to South America, particularly if you’ve been anywhere in the Andes (like soroche-inducing areas of Bolivia, Peru, Argentina etc.), you would have heard this music before.  And it would have immediately taken you back to that time you were sittin’ around, sippin’ a cup of your mate, living like your dream of being part of the Mysterious Cities of Gold team (minus the colonisation and desercration of culture and tradition) were finally coming true.

So who’s that dude in the clip blissing out Charango-style?

He’s Jaime Torres and he’s not only a world-renowned composer and interpreter of Charango, he’s also touring Australia – his first here after 23 years away – to form a cross-cultural dialogue between remote Aboriginal communities, leading indigenous artists and indigenous communities and artists in his home country of Argentina.

The tour kicks off with a concert in Sydney on Saturday 28 November at the Seymour Centre, corner of City Rd and Cleveland St, Chippendale, 6.30pm.

With a career that spans over 60 years, Jaime Torres has taken his Charango to all ends of the earth. He started small, but in 1974, Jaime and his band were invited to perform at the FIFA World Cup Opening Ceremony in Germany and he has not looked back since.  He has performed throughout the Americas, Asia and Europe. And now, after 23 years, Australian audiences have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to witness Torres’ live performance – a true powerhouse of rich and historical content that will give you a taste of the vast and timeless landscapes and cultures of the Andes.

The Father of the Charango

Jaime’s commitment to his homeland of Argentina is strong. He created a vital project called Tantanakuy, which gives his people the opportunity to come back to their land and their musical and traditional roots, while at the same time taking the voice of Andean music to the world. There are few artists of his calibre and trajectory still performing. Loyal to his peoples’ cultural values and heritage, his music has transcended borders and generations. Jaime represents a story, a culture and an identity born of his Charango, which transforms the echoes of remote places into a global sound.

To see Jaime Torres live will showcase a true powerhouse of rich, historical content alongside the most prominent indigenous music cultural icons, in a musical encounter of the highest level and of much significance to both Latin American and Australian indigenous communities. Jaime Torres and Archie Roach will be travelling together visiting remote indigenous communities, meeting other indigenous artists, as well as visiting Archie’s community in Victoria and visiting the mission where Archie was stolen from.

This collaboration is part of the Stories We Tell project, which focusses on finding ways of listening to, learning from and sharing the voices, lives and values of remote indigenous communities through the arts.


Tickets are on sale now:

  • $45+bf early bird
  • $30+bf 16yrs and under
  • $40+bf for groups of 10+

Available online through Seymour Theatre website, phone or in person at the Seymour Centre Box Office. Unless sold out, tickets will be available at the door at $55 on concert day.


Images courtesy of Jaime Torres’ publicity team

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