When a naive pre-med student named Mina gets her first job in a nursing home and meets an elderly Cuban jazz musician named Luis,  she discovers that music triggers Luis’ memories and uses it to break him out of his dementia, and to create moments of lucidity and joy.  
At the heart of THE CUBAN is music. In the film, music dissolves the boundaries of age, ethnicity, gender, culture and politics.  It bridges the present with the past and has the power to trigger memory and awaken long-forgotten emotions. Afro-Cuban Jazz, permeates throughout, drawing in the audience in the same way it draws in the characters.  It brings vibrancy and joy to a previously stale environment and it triggers the pulsating, sensuous and colourful world of Luis’ own imagination.  

THE CUBAN is a touching story of a friendship that blossoms through music and the power of the imagination – and the film is incredibly topical at a moment that the world has its eyes on the realities of long-term care and front line workers. The film could have been easily cut by 30 minutes, as it’s bit long drawn out and slow moving, with perhaps a few too many subplots playing out within the main story.


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THE CUBAN stars Ana Golja, Oscar nominee Shohreh Aghdashloo, Lauren Holly and Giacomo Gianniotti, alongside Gossett Jr. Written by Alessandra Piccione, lensed by Celiana Cardenas, and features original music by Grammy nominated, Juno winning Cuban-Canadian artist, Hilario Duran.  Sound for the film was designed by Nelson Ferreira and his Oscar nominated sound team.  THE CUBAN was produced by Alessandra Piccione, Sergio Navarretta, Ana Golja and Taras Koltun, executive produced by Ryan Kimel, Paul Golini, Divya Shahani, James O’Donnell, Shohreh Aghdashloo and Louis Gossett Jr. and funded in part by Telefilm Canada and Ontario Creates.

The film’s soundtrack was composed by multi Juno Award winner and Grammy nominated artist, Hilario Duran.  Duran grew up and received his musical training in Havana and has since gone on to work with legendary musicians such as Chucho Valdes, Dizzy Gillespie and Arturo Sandoval.  He is a widely respected piano virtuoso on the international jazz scene.

About the Author

Bryen Dunn is a freelance journalist with a focus on travel, lifestyle, entertainment and hospitality. He has an extensive portfolio of celebrity interviews with musicians, actors and other public personalities. He enjoys discovering delicious eats, tasting spirited treats, and being mesmerized by musical beats.