Blondie is going to Havana in 2019. The band will host a four-day, all-inclusive cultural event, Blondie in Havana, March 14-18, 2019. The Cultural Exchange will include visits to the city’s museums, performances and visits with some of Cuba’s artists and musicians, two Blondie concerts, a photography and architecture tour of Havana and more.

“We’ve never been to Cuba, though we’ve always hoped to get there someday,” said founding Blondie guitarist Chris Stein in a statement. “We’ve been talking about it for ages, and now it’s finally happening. Havana is such an incredible scene, such an incredible city. I’ve always been fascinated by their music and their wildly creative culture. It’s going to be an amazing trip, and we’re all really looking forward to it.”

The band has covered The Ramones’ 1976 track “Havana Affair” at shows throughout the years in homage to their friends (and punk legends), and will take the Cuban metropolis to another level. The four-day event includes two Blondie performances at Havana’s historic Teatro Mella, a 1,500-seat Gaudi-esque theater and former site of the old Rodi Cinema, first opened in 1952. Blondie will share the stage with Cuban musicians like Alain Perez, David Torrens and 1960s Afro-Cuban progressive rockers Sintesis. Attendees will also have access to some of Cuba’s leading visual artists, including José Bruzón, Andy Rivero, The Merger studio, Los Carpinteros, Kamyl, Bullaudy and La Mina, at their private studios and galleries throughout city.

Blondie’s Havana poster by Mathieu Persan

“Blondie has always had a love for music from that part of the world,” said long-time drummer Clem Burke. “All the way back to ‘Rapture’ and ‘The Tide Is High,’ we’ve always experimented with Caribbean sounds and polyrhythm. So as soon as going to Cuba became a possibility, we started putting something together. I think there will be a really special energy. To be with some of our closest friends and fans in a whole different environment, a whole new plane.”

Tickets to the event cover five-star accommodations at Meliá Havana for four nights, meals at some of Havana’s best restaurants (including Atelier, Chansonnier, VIP Havana and Tierra), walking tour of Old Havana, all guides, translators and transportation (via classic American car), a meet and greet and photo op with the band, nightly entertainment from Cuban artists at Fabrica De Arte and seats to Blondie’s two shows at Teatro Mella on March 16 and 17.

Under the current administration, travel for tourism purposes by U.S. citizens to Cuba is prohibited, with the exception of a Cultural Exchange with a licensed travel group. Blondie in Havana will be working with Dreamcatcher Events, a fully licensed (by the U.S. Government (Department of Treasury, Office of Foreign Asset Control) and Ministerio de Cultura de la República de Cuba) to lead this Cultural Exchange with Blondie in 2019. U.S. citizens are requires to obtain a visa ($85) to enter Cuba.

Complete information and registration details are available at blondieinhavana.com.

Tina Benitez-Eves

A Royal Flush vet, Tina started writing for the magazine in 2003. Her work has appeared in Men’s Journal, Wine Spectator, and more.