Costa Maya Heating Up

The Island Newspaper, Ambergris Caye, Belize            Vol. 15, No. 20            May 19, 2005

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The first of what will be many more meetings of the Costa Maya Festival Committee was held last Thursday to commence preliminary planning of this spectacular event. This annual festival has become one of the most anticipated throughout the country, thus the committee’s ambition to make it better every year. As May rapidly fades away into June, time to plan is limited. However, with the efforts of the committee, several points have been discussed and agreed upon, particularly with the dream to make this year’s festivities the best.

    Great news coming from the committee was the confirmation of 29-year-old Argentinean celebrity Sebastian Rulli. This well-known actor will more than likely co-host the 2005 Reina de la Costa Maya Pageant on August 4th with Lilian Villanueva, who has graced the Costa Maya stage on several occasions. After finding success in several ‘telenovelas’ (soap operas) from Argentina, Sebastian has acted in Mexican hits such as Primer Amor, A mil por hora in 2000. In 2002, he starred in Clase 406 and Alegrijes y Rebujos and in 2004 won the hearts of many in the mega-hit Rubi, as the love struck Hector. Sebastian can be seen on Galavision (Channel 10) acting as Sebastian in the “novela” Contra Viento y Marea. A well-known charming personality, Sebastian Rulli is sure to draw a large crowd of fans to the festival grounds.

    This year being the tenth anniversary of the Reina de la Costa Maya Pageant, promises to be full of not only grace, beauty, poise and elegance, but of surprises, as well. Plans are already underway to bring in the first ever pageant winner, Ms. Maria de Socorro Retolaza, the beauty ambassador from Mexico. The pageant has had a wonderful response from those who visit the festival grounds and every year it seems to get bigger and better.

    Finally, the BIG question, “Who will headline Saturday night?” And, the answer is, Reggaeton and Cumbia masters, AB Quintanilla and the Kumbia Kings! Yes, you read right. The Kings are coming for one night only to provide you with at least two hours of spectacular music and dance. Selena’s little brother and company will be rocking the stage with music that transcends all ages. Start polishing your dancing shoes and expect to stay up late with the Kings!

    The Kumbia Kings have dominated the charts and sold millions of albums with their five releases since 1999. Their peers have taken notice, showing them respect with nominations for the American Music Awards, Latin Grammys, Tejano Music Awards, Premio Lo Nuestro and Billboard Latin Music Awards, among others. Their sixth album, Los Remixes 2.0, presented a fresh new image of the group. Three talented young vocalists have come on board – Pee Wee González, Frank Pangelinan and Jacob Ceniceros, who join the already well-known Abel Talamantes. Their First single Sabes a Chocolate (You Taste Like Chocolate) marks the breakout debut of Pee Wee González. He is only 14, but the way he takes charge on lead vocals, he sounds like a professional. A hit for Menudo 20 years ago, Sabes a Chocolate, done Kumbia Kings style, comes in cumbia, club and merengue versions.

    This year, look forward to seeing a major influence of the Mayan culture, with fabulous costumes and dancers depicting Pre-Hispanic dances. There might even be a Mayan singer interpreting popular songs from other artists with a twist. Of course, expect to see great dances from Barbara’s Dance Group and the San Pedro Dance Company, as well.

    On Sunday, make plans to enjoy some volleyball with your Mexican beer. The Costa Maya Committee along with Jorge Varela is planning a volleyball tournament to keep the spirit alive throughout the entire weekend. When the sun sets, expect live music from Belizean and Honduran bands.

    The San Pedro Sun will continue bringing you the latest updates on the 2005 Costa Maya Festival scheduled for August 4th – 7th.
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