(Posted September 28, 2015)

The Williamsburg Salsa Orchestra will perform on the Juniata College campus at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Oct. 2, in Rosenberger Auditorium in the Halbritter Center for the Performing Arts.
The Williamsburg Salsa Orchestra will perform on the Juniata College campus at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Oct. 2, in Rosenberger Auditorium in the Halbritter Center for the Performing Arts.

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- The Williamsburg Salsa Orchestra is a cover band, although you will not find them playing "Free Bird" at a local dive bar. This group fuses hit songs with traditional salsa stylings and will perform on the Juniata College campus at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Oct. 2, in Rosenberger Auditorium in the Halbritter Center for the Performing Arts.

For tickets and information about the Juniata Presents series, please call (814) 641-JTIX (5849). General admissions tickets for single performances are $20, except where otherwise noted. Single-show tickets for seniors over age 65 and children age 18 and under are $12. Juniata College students are admitted free with a student ID.

At 6 p.m., right before the performance, Juniata will sponsor free salsa lessons on the quad in from of the performing arts center. In case of rain the lessons will be moved inside the performing arts building.

Comprised of 11 musicians playing instruments from congas to baritone sax, the WSO plays popular songs of today through a brassy, percussive lens. Their arrangements layer multipart backup harmonies underneath smooth vocals from Argentinian frontwoman Solange Prat.

By combining a mainstream set list with traditional Latin sounds, Gianni Mano, the ensemble's arranger and percussionist, bridges the gap between seemingly dissonant genres. Members of the audience can expect to hear unique interpretations of songs like "Young Folks," by Peter Bjorn & John, and "Lonely Boy," by The Black Keys.

"Anywhere they go, WSO is loved by all crowds not only because of their unique interlock of genres, but the rocketing energy they bring to every stage."

Inlovemag.com

Before his current role in the Williamsburg Salsa Orchestra, Mano performed with Brooklyn-based Radio Mundial, and has composed original music for the award-winning 2014 film, "Sex, Love, & Salsa."

The group's self-titled debut album has been received robustly around the world, and was featured in Rolling Stone's 2013 Latin Hot List and on television outlets like Telemundo.

A critic from Brooklyn's Village Voice said, "If only everything that shouldn't really work worked this well."

Inlovemag.com said, "Anywhere they go, WSO is loved by all crowds not only because of their unique interlock of genres, but the rocketing energy they bring to every stage."

By Tyler Ayres

Contact Gabe Welsch at welschg@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.