the history

"Musica Cubana - A story that must be told"



The historical and current development of Cuban music is unique.

Beach, sun, salsa, old-timers, cigars and Buena Vista Social Club - that is the cliché that first appears to non-Cubans. However, this view does not do Cuba justice any more than it does Germany justice to be treated with sauerkraut and Oktoberfest. Havana has a population of just over 2 million, but produces world-class musicians like an entire continent. Cuba is much more than Buena Vista Social Club and Salsa! Cuba is much more than sun and beach. !

„Music in the blood“ - The diversity of musical Cuba is unique in the world. It is a melting pot of the most diverse musical influences, nourished by its own history, tradition and the very rapid synthesis with all the influences available on a daily basis. A bubbling cauldron of musical and rhythmic creativity! Our film lets Cuban musicians speak about their music, their understanding of music and their thoughts, and a subjective first-hand view, free of schoolmasterly categorisation, emerges. We would also like to inspire official structures, sponsors and interested private individuals for our project.

The project will be filmed with a Cuban and German camera team. The film language is Cuban Spanish with German or English voice-overs. The project is financed 100% independently of the broadcaster, all rights to the film project lie 100% with the producer. LAUTRAZfilm.


Director's comment

On the very first day of my first visit to Havana in 2006, I was overwhelmed by the enormous musical diversity that greeted me there. Immediately it became clear to the musician in me: Cuba is much more than "Buena Vista Social Club", Salsa and all the other common clichés in tourists' heads!

At every turn, I encountered a bubbling melting pot of musical and rhythmic creativity beyond all prevailing, confining categories. In the following days, despite the language barrier - I don't speak Spanish - warm friendships developed with various Cuban musicians, especially with César Lopéz, I was on the same wavelength from the start. And the longer I absorbed everything around me, the more I realised that what I had just been allowed to experience could neither be reproduced in words nor photographed. Only moving pictures would convey an authentic impression. These thoughts gave rise to the idea of making a film about Cuban music, and soon the somewhat naïve idea of an amateur turned into a professional undertaking.

It was important to me not to reproduce the stereotypical Cuba images of a tourist, but to show the Cuban version of reality as it is seen and lived by musicians. In order for the Cubans to be able to tell their subjective and very personal view of things, the film was to be conceived and realised absolutely independently of politics, TV stations, opinion makers and financiers. After several unsuccessful attempts to get the project off the ground, the seventh attempt finally worked. By January 2018, I had my all-Cuban film team together and we shot all the footage by May 2018. Post-production took place in Munich until March 2022. Then, 16 years after my first visit to Havana, my idea had finally become the film "La Clave - A Mistery of Musica Cubana".
Kurt Hartel