World music can expose listeners to the mariachi horns of Mexico, the thumb pianos of Africa, or postmodern compositions for the howling emptiness of Antarctica. Sample cosmopolitan sounds with this GrouponLive deal to see Jorge Martinez with special guest Oscar Lopez at the Registry Theatre. For $25, you get one general-admission ticket on Thursday, May 24, at 8 p.m. (up to a $49.20 value, including all fees).
Jorge Martinez grew up with a guitar at his fingertips. “At age six,” he recalls, “I remember seeing a guitar in front of me and a friend of my father's started to teach me, late in the night.” By 14 he was learning flamenco rhythms from an uncle, and quickly began seasoning these with his own rock, jazz, funk, and Latin influences, and salt and pepper to taste. Now 36, Martinez's sizzling arrangement of "Black Orpheus" inspired an audience of thousands to shake their hips at the Montreal International Jazz Festival, and the band brought the house down at Place des Arts with a stirring cover of the Che Guevara–tribute "Hasta Siempre." Also heating up the stage, Oscar Lopez favours a sensual, more traditional style that the Calgary Herald's Swerve Magazine noted as showcasing “gymnastic fills, trills, and arpeggios... [and] fearless bursts of flamenco riffage.”
Constructed in the late 1930s, The Registry Theatre has since reinvented itself as many times as a shape-shifting David Bowie. Taking its name from its original function as the Waterloo County Registry Office, the building also housed a police headquarters and a storage area for the Curling Hall of Fame before finally settling down as a refuge for the theatrical arts. In appreciation of the relatively rare Art Deco style manifest in its terrazzo floor, geometric patterns, and extensive use of marble, the city of Kitchener granted the theatre heritage status in 1991, and a recent revitalization effort vivified the lobby's original green and straw colour scheme.