In Danilo`s words ““This record is based on the idea that whatever we do has an impact in the universe,” “The word ‘providence,’ for me, means standing up for the future of the next generation of children.”
And what a way to stand up. Danilo Perez and his wife Patricia Zarate are the soul and energy behind the Panama Jazz Festival, an initiative that celebrated its 7th edition in 2010 and has raised the bar of the region both as a Festival but more importantly, as a music school. The Danilo Perez Foundation provides economically challenged children from the poorest neighborhoods in Panama with the opportunity of discovering music and being really good at it. His students have reached international schools such as Berkley.
Their base is in Casco Viejo, Panama`s colonial quarter, once considered one of the poorest areas in the city and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site undergoing an interesting revitalization process that has injected energy not only into architecture but into community as well. The school, located at the old Conservatorio building (Music Conservatory) was a 10 year donation from a private developer that believes developing a historic city should not be separate from integrating the community to the opportunities that are being created.
When you first meet Danilo you sense the energy running through him. He is all about positive vibe. His family, his daughters are a clear inspiration. “What are you doing so we can have a healthy life in the future?” he imagined them asking. “What are you adults leaving us?”.
His efforts through the Fundacion Danilo Perez and now Providence are all trying to address musically or educationally those same questions.
Danilo has been acclaimed by jazz specialists and international press as a daring musician that goes where many don`t dare, over and over again. His inspiration reaches wider and deeper than most think. Seeing a kid from Chorrillo whose life was about survival now being able to stand in a plateau side by side young musicians from Europe and the States (and teaching others in his barrio), you will be able to see and feel what Providence is all about.
Thumbs up Danilo and Patricia!!!!