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ARTURO O’FARRILL AND THE AFRO LATIN JAZZ ORCHESTRA
February 4, 2015 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pmFREE
Join us for an evening of musica featuring Arturo O’Farrill and the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra, as part of the Composers Now Festival!
To RSVP, click here.
This performance presents works by Alexis Bosch, Dafinis Prieto, Earl McIntyre and Arturo O’Farrill, including four compositions, Guajira Simple, Triumphant Journey, Second Line Soca/Bruddah Singh and Vaca Frita recorded in December at Havana’s Abdala studios for the Orchestra’s fifth album, Cuba: The Conversation Continued.
The album, recorded during the historic period following the United States’ announcement of proposed changes in US and Cuban relations, picks up the legacy of Dizzy Gillespie and Chano Pozo’s groundbreaking work in the 1940’s. O’Farrill envisions the magic between these two jazz giants as if their collaboration would have continued well in to the future.
The performance will be followed by a conversation with Arturo O’Farrill and Tania León.
THE COMPOSERS NOW FESTIVAL celebrates living composers, the diversity of their voices and the significance of their musical contributions to our society. During the month of February, the Festival brings together dozens of performances presented by venues, ensembles, orchestras, opera companies, dance companies and many other innovative events throughout New York City. Composers will be in attendance at all events, interacting with audiences. Composers Now is a project partner of The Fund for the City of New York. We gratefully acknowledge the support of the ASCAP Foundation, the BMI Foundation, the Cheswatyr Foundation, the Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation and the Pocantico Center for the Arts.
Pianist & Musical Director, Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra
Grammy Award winning pianist, composer and educator Arturo O’Farrill — leader of the “first family of Afro-Cuban Jazz” (New York Times) — was born in Mexico and grew up in New York City. Son of the late, great composer Chico O’Farrill, Arturo was educated at Manhattan School of Music, Brooklyn College Conservatory and the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College. He played piano in Carla Bley’s Big Band from 1979 through 1983 and earned a reputation as a soloist in groups led by Dizzy Gillespie, Steve Turre, Freddy Cole, Lester Bowie, Wynton Marsalis and Harry Belafonte.
In 2002, O’Farrill established the GRAMMY Award winning Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra (ALJO), and in 2007, he founded the nonprofit Afro Latin Jazz Alliance (ALJA).
O’Farrill has recorded numerous CDs, and can be heard on the soundtracks of two critically acclaimed films, Calle 54 and Chico and Rita. O’Farrill latest Latin GRAMMY nomination is for Last Night at Birdland (ZOHO) featuring the Chico O’Farrill Afro Cuban Jazz Orchestra. In 2008, O’Farril won a GRAMMY Award for Best Latin Jazz Album album for Song for Chico, (Zoho). O’Farrill has received commissions from the Apollo Theater, Meet the Composer, the Big Apple Circus, the Philadelphia Music Project, Symphony Space, and the Bronx Museum of the Arts. He has also composed music for films, including, Hollywoodland and Salud.
Mr. O’Farrill is on the faculty of Brooklyn College’s Conservatory of Music and the Manhattan School of Music. He is a Steinway Artist and artist-in-residence at the Harlem School of the Arts and Casita Maria Center for Arts & Education. In addition, he is a member of the Board of Governors of the New York chapter of NARAS.
THE AFRO LATIN JAZZ ORCHESTRA
The GRAMMY Award winning Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra (ALJO), led by Arturo O’Farrill, brings together the drama of Big Band jazz, the culture of Latin music, and the virtuosity of eighteen of the world’s most accomplished solo musicians. Thirteen years of critically acclaimed performances internationally, has firmly established the ALJO as the standard-bearer for creative interpretation of Latin jazz greats such as Tito Puente, Machito, and Chico O’Farrill, as well as the driving force behind new commissions from Latin music’s most talented composers and arrangers. The ALJO has thrilled audiences at The Apollo Theater, Midsummer Night Swing at Lincoln Center, Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors, The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the San Jose Jazz Festival, DC Jazz Festival, Newport Jazz Festival, The Joyce Theater, and countless other leading venues.The ALJO are artists-in-residence at the Harlem School of the Arts. Visit them on YouTube: youtube.com/user/AfroLatinJazzNY
AFRO LATIN JAZZ ALLIANCE
The non-profit Afro Latin Jazz Alliance (ALJA) was established by Arturo O’Farrill in 2007 to promote Afro Latin Jazz through performance, education and recordings. ALJA self produces the Orchestra’s annual performance season at Symphony Space (2007 – 2015), and maintains a weekly engagement for the Orchestra at the famed jazz club Birdland. The Alliance also maintains a world-class collection of Latin Jazz musical scores and recordings. ALJA’s education initiatives include the Afro Latin Jazz Academy of Music in-school residency program serving public schools citywide with instrumental and ensemble instruction, and the pre-professional youth orchestra, the Fat Afro Latin Jazz Cats, which prepares the next generation of musicians. The Afro Latin Jazz Alliance is a partner project of the Fund for the City of New York and maintains an administrative office at the Harlem School of the Arts — The Herb Alpert Center where O’Farrill and the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra are currently artists-in-residence.
For more information on the Afro Latin Jazz Alliance, please visit www.afrolatinjazz.org.
To RSVP, click here.
Photo courtesy of David Garten