CubaDupa 2023 – day 1

It’s great to be back!

Wellington Batucada at CubaDupa 2023, day 1 - the parade. Photo by Varun Konikkara.

Oh CubaDupa, how we have missed you!

Our big CubaDupa performance this year was a little more low-key than in previous years – being off-stage at Swan Lane instead of on – but that gave us a fantastic opportunity to include all our signed-off drummers and dancers, rather than having to select only as many as we could fit on-stage.

We had a wonderful afternoon – getting ready together in our old haunt of Thistle Hall – always brings back great memories – then a mass wander down the back streets together with a bit of a warm-up half-way.

We wait backstage for a while, then we’re on, and playing, and dancing – and afterwards a little parade around the block surrounding Swan Stage. It’s great to get the opportunity to do a bit of parading – it means more people get to see us, for a start (I think only the front row of the crowd could actually see anything during our gig!). Plus it makes for quite excellent photos, as you will see.

Wellington Batucada at CubaDupa 2023 – video by Tom Etuata

We love CubaDupa – it’s our biggest festival of the year and we absolutely love sharing the weekend with so many other fantastic performers, happenings, people and shows. It really is a taonga for our beautiful and vibrant city.

Oh – and the weather – the Weather Gods smiled upon us once again – and a forecast which had been quite dodgy earlier on in the week turned out just lovely. Not too hot, not too cold, no rain, and a bit of a Wellington breeze to cool us all down afterwards. Perfect.

Wellington Batucada at CubaDupa 2023, day 1 - team photo by Epu Tararo.

Thanks to everyone who made this happen – both from Wellington Batucada and also the massive CubaDupa team. We had a blast!

Wellington Batucada at CubaDupa 2023 – stage show – video by Josef, from the Nelson Sambassadors.

Wellington Batucada at CubaDupa 2023 – parade – video by Josef, from the Nelson Sambassadors.

Photo galleries

Photos by Epu Tararo, friends of Jennifer Montgomery, Ginas Bellygees, Jax D-wan, Kelly Etuata, Satya Priyomarsono, Varun Konikkara and Warren Quennell. Click on any thumbnail to see the larger version:

Getting ready

Waiting to play

The show

The parade

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