About The Last Mambo

The Last Mambo explores the  world of salsa/Latin jazz in the San Francisco Bay area from diverse perspectives of dancers, DJs and musicians.  The film discusses how  the  dance aesthetic, musical presentation and cultural context have changed in the wake of  Afro-Cuban music’s growing  popularity and commercialization.  The Last Mambo, punctuated with  interviews, photographs and concert footage captures the spirit of salsa/Latin jazz, celebrates its rich cultural heritage and  debates the nature of its future.

About the Filmmakers

Rita Hargrave – Director/Producer/Videographer
Rita is dancer, dancer, teacher and dance historian and geriatric psychiatrist.  She is the founder of salsaroots.com,  Bay Area based website devoted to the Afro-Cuban, Afro-Puerto Rican and African American roots of salsa dancing.  This is her first feature film.

Paul Kealoha Blake – Producer/Videographer/Editor
Paul is  a Hawaiian storyteller, independent producer and co-founder of East Bay Media Center, a 501(c)3 Non-profit Corporation established in Berkeley, California in 1980. The. By providing technical and educational media needs to communities in the East Bay, In 1991, Paul with co-founder Mel Valpour launched the Berkeley Video and Film Festival.  Paul is a tireless educator and Media advocate for community involvement, especially for marginalized youth and minorities. He has an extensive history in the production and promotion of documentary films.

Wayne Wallace-Musical Director, Trombonist, Vocalist
Five-time Grammy nominee, WAYNE WALLACE, is one of the most respected exponents of African American-Latin music in the world today. He is known for the use of traditional forms and styles in combination with contemporary music, and has earned recognition with his recent placement in the Downbeat Critics Polls under the trombone and producer categories.  Mr. Wallace is an accomplished arranger, educator, and composer with compositions for film and television. He has also received grants from the Creative Work Fund, the National Endowments for the Arts,the Lila Wallace Foundation, and the San Francisco Arts Commission. Mr. Wallace has performed, recorded and studied with acknowledged masters of the Afro-Latin and jazz idioms such as Aretha Franklin, Bobby Hutcherson, Earth Wind and Fire, Pete Escovedo, Santana, Julian Priester, Conjunto Libre, Whitney Houston,Tito Puente, Steve Turre, John Lee Hooker, Con-funk-shun, Francisco Aguabella, Manny Oquendo and Libre, Max Roach, the Count Basie Orchestra and Orestes Vilató.