Haila María Mompié
Cuban from head to toe, a voice full of sentiments and an indisputable scenic strength are some of the characteristics displayed by Haila María Mompié González, an artist currently ranked as one of the most outstanding Cuban interpreters, a genuine exponent of the son, a musical genre created in Cuba and acknowledged throughout the world.
Haila Mompié was born on January 28, 1974 in Las Tunas, an eastern province of the country. Her father was an amateur singer and her mother an stylist. Since her childhood, Haila Mompié was devoted to music and, though at the very beginning she felt attracted by dancing, she always felt a great affinity with singing.
After some years studying dancing, in 1991 she sang with an impressive tuning and a definitely special timbre and Yaquelín Castellanos, a reputed Cuban interpreter, was so amazed that proposed her to join her group. So she began performing as singer of the Tradición Septet, mainly devoting herself to the Cuban traditional music.
A year later, she made her first performance at "Las Avenidas" Cabaret and, later on, joined the "Habana Son" group led by saxophonist "El Chino Lam". That same year, she was asked to participate in the "Guajira Habanera" show and, as part of this show, she made her first international tour through different scenarios in Mexico.
In September 1994, she joined the Bamboleo musical project where she became outstanding for her excellent vocal quality and her first-class improvisation thus revealing herself as one of the most important soneras of her generation.
As singer in Bamboleo, she made two records, a number of international tours through Italy, The Netherlands, England, the United States, Belgium, France, Peru and Mexico, among others. Besides, at national level she worked intensely and managed to place that Orchestra among the most popular ones.
In 1998, after such an experience, she decided to join a project initiated by Leonel Limonta, musician and composer. So her name was included as founder of the "Azúcar Negra" Orchestra which attracted the attention of musicians, specialists and public in general. Likewise, together with "Azúcar Negra" Haila made a number of international tours across Europe and America where she was very successful. She also recorded a hit that reached the first places in the Cuban radio and television thanks to her exceptional interpretation. Just to mention an example, the piece entitled "Andar Andando" sang by Haila became a hymn not only for dancers but also for an audience of different ages.
In 2001, after returning from a tour throughout Europe, Haila decided to initiate a new stage in her artistic career and made her first performance as soloist. This new challenge relied upon her well-known talent and her maturity as singer. This ingenious idea, acclaimed by the audience, goes hand in hand with the fact that she made a record for the BIS Music record company as soloist which was musically directed and produced by the prominent Cuban musician Isaac Delgado.
In said record, Haila showed once more her temperament and interpretative strength, her passion for music and, above all, her Cuban nature, displayed not only in this record but also in each of her performances.
During the years 2000, 2001 and 2002, Haila performed as soloist on different stages in Japan, where her talent has been acknowledged and shared the stage with artists of the stature of Cheo Feliciano, Oscar de León, Rey Ruiz, Celia Cruz, José Alberto El Canario, Gilberto Santa Rosa, Chucho Valdés, Muñequitos de Matanzas, Mario Rivera, Juan Manuel Ceruto, David Calzado and Isaac Delgado.
Besides, Haila participates as a singer in a number of records from important Cuban musicians and in the "La Rumba Soy Yo" record which was awarded the 2001 Latin Grammy and where she not only displays her voice, but also her versatility.
It is worthwhile mentioning that the year 2002 was of great importance for the young Cuban singer since, besides performing in the United States together with Isaac Delgado and his Orchestra, she was selected guest artist at the reputed Tropicana Cabaret, the acid test of her performing ability from which she came out well. Likewise, she offered concerts in different European countries as part of the "Festival Son Cuba" cast and member of the Cuban Grammys project together with Elíades Ochoa, Juan Formell, Sampling, Chucho Valdés, Los Papines and Ernán López-Nussa.
On April 25, 2003, the Haila María Mompié Orchestra, made up by highly talented musicians, was launched at the Riviera Hotel Copa Room Cabaret. She announced her signing up as exclusive artist of Musicalia, the Artistic Representation Agency from Artex and her "Haila Live" record (produced by the BIS Music label) containing the live concert offered by Haila at the National Theater in Cuba where she performed together with Chucho Valdés, Isaac Delgado, Mayito Rivera, David Calzado and the Charanga Habanera singers. This CD was musically produced and directed by Juan Manuel Ceruto.
In June that same year, Haila made an important tour across Europe and in July and August she performed together with David Calzado and the Charanga Habanera in a number of Japanese cities.
In April, 2004, The Diva of the Cuban Son made an outstanding performance at the Festivalísimo, an event held in Montreal which is the second most important festival after the Jazz Festival. The Canadian mass media echoed Haila`s success who had the honor of performing with Master Alvarez`s orchestra.
Voice quality, professionalism and dedication are Haila María Mompié`s main features. She faces life with the dignity of those who love Cuban music. Not by chance she has been described as one of the greatest contemporary Cuban soneras and one of the main interpreters of the new generation of talents with a prestige of those who make history in popular music.
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