Bomba Marilé: Craft Lake City Performers

Music Interviews

With the largest number of vendors to date, The 14th Annual Craft Lake City DIY Festival Presented By Harmons returns to the Utah State Fairpark with an exciting variety of homegrown DIY-ers. In the following pages, we’ve highlighted some craft foodies, inventors, performers, vintage curators and members of the next generation of artisans that will be participating in this year’s bustling event. Check out craftlakecity.com for more information about The 14th Annual Craft Lake City DIY Festival.


“It’s been a mission of ours to share the diversity and beauty of Puerto Rican culture with those here who may have never heard of bomba,” says Bomba Marilé's Miriam Padilla Vargas.
Photo: John Barkiple

There are several elements at play in bomba, the dance and musical style traditional to Puerto Rico, but at the center of the craft is pride and passion, something of which Bomba Marilé has a considerable amount.

The ensemble consists of six members—Miriam Padilla Vargas, Isaias Alavéz Martinez, Omar Gonzalez, Liliana Rodriguez Muriel, Manuel Padro and Mel Espin—and was formed in 2017 as a way to connect the individuals with their Afro-Puerto Rican culture. “It’s been a mission of ours to share the diversity and beauty of Puerto Rican culture with those here who may have never heard of bomba,” says Vargas.

Bomba rhythms originated in African countries and were brought to Puerto Rico as a way to create community among groups who did not share a common language. Bomba music contains a complex history, performed at both celebrations and funerals, and is also a vessel for rebellion and uprising during times of injustice.

The main components of bomba are the Barril, the Cua, Maraca, the Singer and the Dancer. Much of the dance and song is improvised, with the drum rhythms marking accents for the Dancer while the Singer adjusts the song depending on the crowd’s energy. “Some rhythms are playful and flirtatious, other rhythms are spiritual and strong,” says Vargas.

To learn more about bomba and Bomba Marilé, check out their performance Aug. 13 at the Craft Lake City DIY Fest and visit their website, bombamarile.com.

 

Check out more past Craft Lake City Performers:
The Pho3nix Child: Craft Lake City Performer
Jacob T. Skeen: Craft Lake City Performer