Omara Portuondo is a legendary Cuban singer and dancer who began her career in the glory days of The Tropicana nightclub in Havana, Cuba.
Long known for singing Bolero, Cuban Son and Jazz, Portuondo became even more famous when she sang “Veinte años” with Ibrahim Ferrer on the landmark Cuban Son album, “Buena Vista Social Club” in 1996.
Portuondo is a Latin Grammy winner for Best Contemporary Tropical Album, and was recognized with the Latin Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.
Omara Portuondo in NYC
Omara Portuondo “One Last Kiss” Tour brings Boleros, Son, Jazz and Cuban classics to Sony Hall in Times Square, NYC on Friday, April 26, 2019 at 8pm. $65
A Legendary Cuban Singer
At 91 (2022), she just keeps on going and keeps making great music. If you want the real thing, that’s Omara Portuondo. Her career spans the entire era of Cuban music as a world music.
She was born in Havana, Cuba on October 29, 1930. By the time she was 15, Omara was singing in the Las d’Aida quartet at Havana’s legendary Tropicana night club. She did that for 15 years.
In 1959, Omara released her first album, “Magia Negra” (Black Magic). In the 1970s, she sang with Orquesta Aragón.
In 1996, Omara recorded on the legendary Buena Vista Social Club album. That record brought old timers of Cuban music back out into the world. She then toured with the group.
She then recorded “Desafios” (1997) with Chucho Valdés, another Cuban music legend.
In 2004, Omara’s “Flor de Amor” was nominated for a Grammy. The next year she won a Billboard award for Best Tropical Album of the Year.