Corazón del Barrio Gala 2017




Performing Arts
Visual Arts
Community Organization

Ava Apple & The Latin Symbolics
ATB Trio
MCCLA's Afro-Caribbean Youth Percussion Group
$75 per person Awards Ceremony & After Party
Music by La Mixta Criolla

Bocaditos Latinoamericanos - Tapas Style Buffet

The Awards of Excellence Ceremony
honors outstanding individuals that have significantly contributed to the Latino Arts and Culture of the Bay Area:

Corazon del Barrio Awards of Excellence are presented to those artists and organizations who have excelled in their discipline, and who have significantly contributed to their communities, and to the Latino Arts and Culture of the Bay Area. 


This year, 5 outstanding individuals, a youth group, and 1 organization were selected in the fields of: Music, Dance, Performing Arts, Visual Arts, Poetry / Literature, Youth, and Community Service. The Awards of Excellence, given every 5 years, for the last 15 years, to honor our very best, has become an integral part of MCCLA's anniversary and celebration.

La Tania is a world class dancer, choreographer and master teacher. She grew up in Andalucía, southern Spain, in the heart of flamenco culture where she began to learn flamenco dance at a very young age. By the age of 17 she was performing professionally and made Madrid her base where she performed for many years as a featured dancer in Tablaos such as Corral de la Morería, Canasteros, Zambra, and toured internationally with many companies including Mario Maya and Paco Peńa. 

In 1993 La Tania moved to the US and since then has toured with her own company Internationally earning many awards such as the Guggenheim Fellowship, the California Arts Council Fellowship, the National Endowments for the Arts Fellowship, the James Irvine Fellowship in Dance and the Isadora Duncan Dance Award twice for Artistic Excellence in the category of Individual Performance. Currently she is the director and founder of the Bay Area-based La Tania Baile Flamenco Company & School




Awards of Excellence in Dance


Awards of Excellence in Music

Singer, flutist, conductor and producer Martha Rodríguez-Salazar has been

bringing Latin American folk, classical and contemporary music to the Bay Area for more than 15 years. For her outstanding leadership in promoting and developing Mexican music and culture in the Bay Area Martha was recognized as a "Luminary" in 2011 by the Mexican Consulate in SF and as "Excelencia Latina" by LAM and Mundo Fox in 2013.

A native of Mexico City, Martha was classically-trained in both Mexico and Mills

College as a concert flutist and opera singer. She currently performs with the Bernal Hill Players and the Latin folk duo Chile y Limón, as well as curating the “Día de los Muertos” event at the San Francisco Symphony. 

Since 200 Martha has been a faculty member of the Community Music Center where she teaches flute and voice, coordinates the scholarship program for youth - Mission District Young Musicians Program, conducts several older adult community choirs, and teaches in the San Francisco Unified School District’s Mariachi Program.

Poet, performance artist, playwright, and spoken word artist Paul S. Flores explores the intersection of urban culture, Hip-Hop, and transnational identity rooted in his growing up in both Chula Vista, CA and Tijuana, Mexico. 

Paul received his degree from University of California, San Diego, and then moved to San Francisco in 1995 to complete the MFA Creative Writing Program at San Francisco State University. In 1996, he co-founded the Latino poetry performance group Los Delicados with Norman Zelaya and Darren de Leon and recorded a CD titled WORD DESCARGA (Calaca Press, 2000). 

Flores’ performance projects have taken him from HBO's Def Poetry to Cuba, Mexico and El Salvador. His theater works include the On The Hill: I AM ALEX NIETO (2016), PLACAS: The Most Dangerous Tattoo (2012), You’re Gonna Cry (2011); and REPRESENTA! (2007). He is a 2015 Doris Duke Performing Artist Award winner, 2014 KQED Hispanic Heritage Local Hero, and 2011 San Francisco Weekly Best Politically Active Hip-Hop Performance Artist. Support for his work also includes the MAP Fund, Gerbode, Hewlett Foundation Theater Commission Award, National Performance Network Forth Fund Award and NPN Creation Fund, an NEA Theater grant, Creative Work Fund, and NALAC Individual Artist Award. He is an adjunct theater professor and teaches Hip-Hop Theater and Spoken Word at the University of San Francisco.

Poet, performance artist, playwright, and spoken word artist Paul S. Flores explores the intersection of urban culture, Hip-Hop, and transnational identity rooted in his growing up in both Chula Vista, CA and Tijuana, Mexico. 

Paul received his degree from University of California, San Diego, and then moved to San Francisco in 1995 to complete the MFA Creative Writing Program at San Francisco State University. In 1996, he co-founded the Latino poetry performance group Los Delicados with Norman Zelaya and Darren de Leon and recorded a CD titled WORD DESCARGA (Calaca Press, 2000). 


Awards of Excellence in Poetry/Literature


Awards of Excellence in Performing Arts

Born in Venezuela. She graduated herself for the 3 years Actors Training program of The National Theater Company in Venezuela. At age of 16 she started her professional work as actress, since then she has done: 5 films, 10 theater plays including “Juliet” in “Romeo and Juliet”, “Andromache” in “The Trojan Women”, "What is the Scandal" and 10 Television Series in Mexico and Venezuela. Her performances have gained her various nominations and awards as best main actress and best supporting actress. Eliana also studied Latinoamerican Literature and Creative Writing at The Central University of Venezuela (UCV) and graduate from The New York Film Academy workshop as Filmmaker in L.A. 

In 2013 she assumes a new role, as a producer and sets off to boost Latin theater in the city of San Francisco, reason why, in February, 2014, she launches “The vagina Monologues” in Spanish at the Brava Theater, achieving excellent results. In 2014 she become a founder member of “3 Lopez Productions” in San Francisco to address the need of more Latinos and women on Theatre. 

In 2015 next to his brother Alfonso Lopez as Director and Ivette Carolina as producer created "What is the scandal?", an autobiographical story which explores what means to be an immigrant woman of color in USA. Immigrants don´t face only the outside challenges of the system but face the internal challenge of adaptation. The play is a reflection of self-transformation and a journey of human growth.

Actually she conduct a weekly radio program "La Parranda" to promote Local Artists. She is married and the proud mother of a boy 8 and a new baby boy two months old. She resides in San Francisco with her family.

Adrian Arias is a Peruvian international prize winning visual artist and poet, who has been enlivening the local San Francisco Bay Area art scene as a cultural leader for the last 17 years. His visual art includes drawing, painting, collage, video, film, graphic design, book design, installation, and performance art. 

Adrian´s work is accessible, lyrical, emotional, surreal, and often surprising but always searching for new platforms of expression while actively resisting conformity and rigidity.

Arriving the area in 2000, his cultural innovations in our artistic community include many interdisciplinary activities, that have gone onto become traditions. Among the first, in 2003, he initiated “Luna Negra” performances to highlight and support women artists.

In 2004, along with Todd Brown and Luis Vasquez, he founded the MAPP program, giving local artists and performers new spaces and venues to expose their work. That same year, he established Video Fest giving videographers and film makers wider visibility and audiences.

Every year, he has exhibited his Día de los Muertos work in various Bay Area galleries, including the Oakland Museum, SOMArts, MCCLA and even at the San Francisco Opera house lobby. In 2003, he founded “Illusion”, a show which over the years has incorporated hundreds of local artists working together to create a spectacular multimedia improvised happening.

Between 2010 and 2015, his international traveling installation exhibition, “Beautiful Trash” focusing on the environmental impact of trash on the oceans was seen in Peru and here, at the Galería de la Raza and de Young Museum.

Along the way he presented many poetry readings, published his literary work, won film and poetry awards, and embarked in 2013 on a formal study of dance with the legendary Anna Halprin. He has participated in several dance performances and expanding into choreography.

At present and in the future, Adrian hopes to help new artists to experiment and free their creations.



Awards of Excellence in Visual Arts


Awards of Excellence / Youth

Quenepas is a vibrant Puerto Rican Bomba music and dance youth ensemble that had its inception in 2008 at La Peña Cultural Center in Berkeley. Quenepas youth have been studying and performing under the direction of Hector Lugo and Shefali Shah for over 9 years and many of the youth have been involved in the practice of Bomba through observing and participating in community jams and performances with their families.

Ages of the ensemble range from 8 to 19 years. Many of the children were first immersed in the tradition since before they could even walk. 

Bomba music and dance originated over 300 years ago in the sugar cane plantations of Puerto Rico where enslaved Africans played, sang, and danced to survive and to resist colonial oppression. 

Quenepas has presented their work at La Peña Cultural Center, the Dia de San Juan Puerto Rican Festival in San Jose, East Side Arts Alliance, and at Oakland Leaf’s Annual Talent Showcase and at the Cuba Caribe Festival multiple times. 

In 2012, Quenepas opened for Latin Grammy winning band La Santa Cecilia at the Brava Theatre in San Francisco for the annual Encuentro del Canto Popular. In 2014, they headlined at the renowned annual Bombazo Fandango festival in Santa Ana, California. Quenepas performed at the 2015 nationally acclaimed Pura Belpre Celebration and Awards Ceremony in San Francisco. 

Most recently (January 2017), Quenepas performed in Puerto Rico at one of the main stages of La Fiestas de la Calle San Sebastian where tens of thousands attend. They study and rehearse weekly at La Peña Cultural Center in Berkeley. Co-Founders/Directors Hector Lugo and Shefali Shah take great pride in ensuring that the musical and dance traditions of Puerto Rico are responsibly passed on to our future cultural workers.

For information: 510-681-1036

In 1979, about 300 dancers and drummers, dressed in multifarious colors and shapes paraded around Precita Park in the Mission District and gave birth to the Carnaval San Francisco, the most diverse carnival in the entire country.

Carnaval San Francisco has cultivated and celebrated the diverse Latin American and Caribbean roots of the Mission District and the San Francisco Bay Area for almost 40 years. 

We accomplish our mission through music, dance, the visual arts and through creating spaces for community learning, school-based education, and advocacy.

Every Memorial Day weekend in May, the Mission district transforms into an enormous celebration pulsating with dancing, drumming, live music, brilliant costumes and delicious foods. Traditions from Brazil, Mexico, Bolivia, Columbia, Trinidad & Tobago, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Guatemala, Chile, Haiti and West Africa are always present. 

In essence Carnaval San Francisco is about community-building, diversity and celebrating multi-cultural arts. Over 400,000 people together to enjoy the revelry and soak up the pageant of color and culture.

We value our strong relationship with the Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts, which together we have created incredible sounds, dance, visual arts and healing of our community.

Join us in 2018 as we celebrate our 40th Anniversary !


Awards of Excellence / Community Organization

Call us: 415-821-1155  - Send your Check to:
Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts
2868 Mission, Street, San Francisco, CA  94610

This year, our goal is to achieve $40,000 to provide youth scholarships for our Multicultural Arts program, and preserve and promote the Latino Cultural values through enriched, diverse programming.

May we count on your support for these projects?


All the donations are tax deductible.  Federal Tax. I.D No. 94-257648411

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