November 30, 2020

Manuel Almeida: ‘Dragaria’ and generosity – La Provincia

ANDHe was a man with different tools: music, narrative, cultural journalism, and Dredge, that integrating newspaper that was the product of his effort combined with that of the also writer Mayte Martín. It came at a time when cultural magazines had passed into a better life, but he called those who were already consolidated and also those who were beginning to manifest themselves in the letters and arts of the Islands, practiced the ideal of coexistence between different generations and stayed as long as he could. She did not deserve the institutional help that other similar publications did, from. Fables to Fetase, The Notebooks of the Athenaeum or that Insular of the Canary Writers Association, which received help from the then General Directorate of Books. It was a personal, independent and courageous project. Neither the Cabildo nor the regional government knew how to see the importance of such a well-intentioned purpose. We all wash our hands in the face of that effort, at most we pay a few coffees clearly insufficient for its maintenance.

After the hellish pandemic, we are unlikely to enter a wonderful new age in which cultural identity is going to be rescued as it deserves. There is likely to be a glimpse of deglobalization, with all the risks, shortcomings, and possibilities involved. We hope that the new era is geared at least towards respect for the cultural heritage of the community, those that in our land are often at the tail end of the political parties’ approaches when the ballot boxes approach. But it is clear that, beyond the tendency to negativity that leads us to resignation, we deserve a worthy survival.

We must continue to grow beyond this long home prison that has taken away our freedom, has increased our isolation and has wanted to reduce our forces. A chiaroscuro age that leaves people like Manuel Almeida and Tito Santana on the road, entertainers in so many facets that they have not been able to give themselves everything they announced.

In New Seed There was room for poems and songs with a message, it was a band that was paving the way in a land where the easy and the populous used to grow up. His literature had a social and existential bias because Manuel had the aspiration of the transcendent, and for that reason he was a fighter for lost causes, a fan of so many pending claims. With his hint of reflection and bittersweet irony, Almeida was a serious, independent, and courageous worker in culture. He did not have time to mature all his proposals, for Canarian society – so prone to silence – to listen to his struggle. Another ahead of his time was the Agaetean Tito Santana, who sowed illusions in the world of Gáldar, in whose theater he made so many calls.

Why is it that death viciously persecutes those of us who are hardly dust in the trade? Why doesn’t the whirlwind of the wind let us bear fruit and take root? Why does early death deprive us of contemplating the maturing of talents like Manuel Almeida, who had so much to offer?


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