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Manuel Valera’s New Cuban Express Big Band.Free
Manuel Valera’s New Cuban Express Big Band.
Presented by Terraza 7 Outdoor Concert Series.
Monday, June 26th, 2021 at 7:00 pm – open rehearsal followed by a full set of original big band music!
General admission: $5.
Donation suggested: $10.
SAXES / Michael Thomas (lead, Patrick Cornelius, Charles Pillow, Jon Lowery, and Andrew Hadro.
TRUMPETS / Kai Sandoval, Dan Blankenship, Kali Rodriguez-Peña, and Bobby Spellman.
TROMBONES / Nick Vayenas, Tim Schneier, Alex Asher, and Brandon Moodie.
RHYTHM SECTION / Manuel Valera (piano); Hamish Smith on Bass and Juan Felipe Mayorca on drums.
Directed, compositions and arrangements by Manuel Valera.
Manuel Valera’s New Cuban Express Big Band serves in a way as an extension of Valera’s Grammy Nominated Sextet New Cuban Express. The Band features Valera’s original writing for the large ensemble as well as adaptations from his earlier bands works for big band including music from the self-titled Grammy Nominated record “New Cuban Express” Influences include the works of Latin jazz arrangers like Chico O’farrill, Tito Puente but also the style of the big bands of Thad Jones, Kenny Wheeler, and Bob Brookmeyer.
The first concerts will feature Valera’s Chamber Music America commission Jose Marti en Nueva York adapted for the large ensemble. This piece composed in 2015 is a song cycle based on the works of Cuban poet Jose Martí during his exile in New York in the late 1800s, the piece features the great Argentinian singer Sofia Rei. Other musicians featured in the Ensemble will be Michael Rodriguez, John Ellis, Roman Filiu, and Michael Thomas among others.
Manuel Valera Born and raised in Havana, Grammy-nominated pianist and composer Manuel Valera since arriving in NYC have become well known in the modern jazz scene, garnering national reviews and lending his talents as a pianist and composer to such notable artists as Arturo Sandoval, Paquito D’Rivera, Brian Lynch, Dafnis Prieto, Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, Jeff “Tain” Watts, Chris Potter, Dave Binney, Adam Rogers, Mark Turner, John Benitez, Samuel Torres, Joel Frahm, Yosvany Terry, and Pedro Martinez and classical violinist and composer Joshua Bell among many others. This dynamic and prolific artist has recorded 12 cd’s as a bandleader with touring projects ranging from his Grammy-nominated group New Cuban Express to his modern contemporary trio to solo piano. His latest trio recording The Seasons will be released on MAVO Records in spring 2017. Valera is the recipient of many composition grants — most notably Chamber Music America’s New Jazz Works, the Dranoff International 2 Piano Foundation, and the ASCAP Young Jazz Composer Award. He has traveled the world performing in more than 30 countries at some of the biggest international venues and festivals in the world.