Arts festival hampered by lack of sound and lights

The Festival Internacional de las Artes 2015 got off to a rocky start Thursday. Government officials canceled activities planned for the canton of Acosta because an accord could not be reached with the firm providing the lights and sound systems.

The outdoor musical events planned for Acosta this weekend and those scheduled in Alajuelita are being moved to the Centro Nacional de la Cultura, the ministry complex, on Avenida 7 in San José.

Government officials pulled the plug on the Acosta events even as the public was gathering for a promised 2 p.m. inauguration and others were setting up food stalls.

The 6 p.m inauguration did take place in Alajuelita.

The La Cruz de Alajuelita was illuminated.  President Luis Guillermo Solis gave a welcome. He was accompanied by his wife, Mercedes Peñas; Victor Hugo Chavarria, mayor of Alajuelita, and Elizabeth Fonseca, minister of Cultura y Juventud.

A street parade was pure Costa Rican with mascaradas, some on stilts, the cimarrona street bands and young women in elaborate Mardi Gras costumes.

Still, the public will have to consult the dancer042415festival Web page to find out where their favorite groups will perform. The events planned indoors in locations such as the Teatro Municipal de Desamparados and the auditorium at Parque La Libertad will go on as scheduled. Many of the presentations planned for Thursday night have been moved to today and Saturday.

Many of the outdoor presentations appear to be moving to the downtown culture ministry, although there is limited space there. Officials said that only 450 persons can be accommodated.

LuzArt S.A., the sound and light firm, issued a statement that did not address the conflict between it and the government directly.

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