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October 12, 2010
  • Tourism promotes domestic tourism
  • Impressions going east of Puerto Plata
  • Youth Orchestra of the Americas visits
  • World Sommelier Contest
Tourism promotes domestic tourism
The Ministry of Tourism is encouraging Dominicans to go out and see their own country. "We dare you to get to know your country," is the campaign. Tourism Minister Francisco Javier Garcia said that this fall, there is a big push to promote domestic travel to Puerto Plata and the north coast.
Javier says that more Dominicans need to see the country that so many foreign visitors save all year to come and visit. During the launch of the campaign at the Hotel Santo Domingo, Javier spoke of the need to protect the sector to maintain the country's positioning as tourism leader in the Caribbean. He stressed that tourism is the motor of the local economy. "We don't have oil, we are not major manufacturers or technology exporters, or a financial center," he said. "But we are good at tourism," he stressed. "Tourism is the sector that has been responsible for the macroeconomic stability." He said there is still a need to communicate the extraordinary importance the tourism industry has for the DR, with an estimated US$4 billion in hard currency in 2009.
Impressions going east of Puerto Plata
A Toronto Sun report depicts tourists as modern-day versions of Christopher Columbus when they visit the DR. Travel writer Isabelle LaFlamme describes how modern-day visitors can have their own adventure of discovery, with a focus on the advantage of combining a stay at the all-inclusive resorts in Puerto Plata and making daytrips to explore less known regions.
One of these areas she visited is Costa Verde, east of Puerto Plata. She marvels at the lush greenery, the coastline, and visits Gaspar Hernandez on her way to Playa Grande. She also visits Gri Gri Lagoon, Playa Caleton and El Limon (further to the east in Samana).
Youth Orchestra of the Americas visits
As part of the activities to mark Santo Domingo 2010 American Capital of Culture, the Youth Orchestra of the Americas (YOA) is visiting for gala concerts. YOA is a pan-American symphony orchestra of gifted musicians, ages 18 to 30, from more than 24 countries. It is directed by Maestro Carlos Miguel Prieto and will be performing 8-16 October with the Youth Symphony Orchestra of the Dominican Republic directed by Maestro Darwin Aquino.
Placido Domingo is the artistic advisor to the Youth Orchestra of the Americas. The group's first tour was in 2002, and since then they have performed more than 100 concerts at leading stages in the Americas and Europe.
The general public can attend two performances: Wednesday, 13 October at the main hall of the National Theater and on Thursday, 14 October at the Plaza de Espana in the Colonial City. Both start at 8:30pm.
Local organizers are the Fundacion Sinfonia, with the performance of the winners of the XVI International Paloma O'Shea Piano Contest. The concert on 14 October commemorates Hispanic Day, with more than 120 young musicians performing. Maestro Aquino will premier the work YOAminicana, written for the occasion.
The program for 13 October includes:
F. Liszt - Piano Concerto No. 1 in E-flat major (Soloist: Kotaro Fukuma, Japan),
Rachmaninoff - Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini (Soloist: Yue Wang, China)
Beethoven - Symphony No. 7 in A major.
Tickets for sale at 809-532-6600.
The program for 14 October, free for the public at Plaza de Espana includes works by
A. Copland - Salon Mexico (Concerto for Clarinet and String Orchestra)
J. Moncayo - Huapango
D. Aquino - YOAminicana (World Premier)
A. Marquez - Conga del Fuego Nuevo
G. Gavilan - Guaguanco (National Premier)
T. Abreu - Cana Brava
L. Alberti - Compadre Pedro Juan
For the event, master classes will also be held and rehearsals are open to music lovers.
World Sommelier Contest
Sommelier Hector Garcia is representing the Dominican Republic at the Best Sommelier in the World Contest 2010 taking place in Santo Domingo. Competitors from Germany, Israel, New Zealand, France, England, Italy, Poland, Slovenia, Switzerland, Argentina, Puerto Rico, Spain, Cuba, Hungary and the DR are taking part. The main competition takes place on Wednesday, 13 October at the Palace of Fine Arts (Bellas Artes) at 6pm. The event is open to the general public.
An extraordinary gala dinner will be held as part of the activities at the Alcazar de Colon, Plaza de Espana on Thursday, 14 October 8pm. Tickets for the event are available through Uepa Tickets at Movie Max, Tel 809 962-2601.
The other event open to the general public as part of the Sommeliers meeting is the Red & the Wines Party scheduled for Viva Wyndham Resort Dominicus on Saturday, 16 October at 9pm. The dress code is red and white.
The contest opens in Santo Domingo on Tuesday, 12 October at the Museum of Modern Art at 7pm. On 13 October, the sommeliers were presented at the Salon de la Rotonda at 6pm and Salon de los Espejos at 9pm in the Palacio de Bellas Artes. The event is sponsored by the Ministry of Culture and the World Sommeliers Association.
For more on upcoming events, see

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