Rockport Chamber Music Festival
Friday, July 1, 8 PM
HARLEM QUARTET &
ALDO LÓPEZ-GAVILÁN, jazz piano
ABELARDITO VALDÉS: Almendra
DIZZY GILLESPIE: A Night in Tunisia
ANTONIO CARLOS JOBIM: The Girl from Ipanema
BILLY STRAYHORN: Take the A Train
ALDO LÓPEZ-GAVILÁN: Epílogo
ALDO LÓPEZ-GAVILÁN: Talking to the Universe
ALDO LÓPEZ-GAVILÁN: Eclipse
ALDO LÓPEZ-GAVILÁN: Pan con Timba
Tickets: $65, $59, $47 (fees may apply)
Ilmar Gavilán, violin | Melissa White, violin | Jaime Amador, viola | Felix Umansky, cello
The Harlem Quartet, praised for its “panache” by The New York Times, is “bringing a new attitude to classical music, one that is fresh, bracing and intelligent,” says the Cincinnati Enquirer. The quartet’s mission is to advance diversity in classical music, engaging young and new audiences through the discovery and presentation of varied repertoire that includes works by minority composers.
Since its 2006 debut at Carnegie Hall, the New York-based ensemble has performed throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe and South Africa. The Quartet completed the Professional String Quartet Residency Program at New England Conservatory in 2013, and participated in NEC’s string quartet exchange program in Paris, working extensively with violinist Günter Pichler.
The Quartet has also worked closely with jazz legends Chick Corea and Gary Burton, with whom the quartet recorded the album Hot House. Following a concert tour of twenty-five major cities, the Harlem Quartet’s recording with Corea and Burton entitled “Mozart Goes Dancing” won a Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Composition.
Harlem Quartet has been featured on WNBC, CNN, the Today Show, WQXR-FM and the News Hour with Jim Lehrer. The ensemble has performed for President Obama at the White House, the U.S. ambassador to the U.K., and served as guest artists and faculty members of the Musica Mundi International Festival in Belgium. Harlem Quartet is regularly featured at jazz festivals around the world, including the Panama Jazz Festival in Panama City, Montreal Jazz Festival, and Miami Nice Jazz Festival.
Aldo López-Gavilán, jazz piano
Cuban jazz pianist Aldo López-Gavilán was born to a family of musicians. His father is a conductor and composer, his mother is a concert pianist, and his brother is the violinist of the Harlem Quartet. López-Gavilán began his formal piano studies at the age of seven. His first international triumph was at the age of 11 when he won a Danny Kaye International Children’s Award, organized by UNICEF. He made his professional debut at 12 and later went on to perform Prokofiev’s Third Concerto with the National Symphonic Orchestra of Cuba. While studying classical music, López-Gavilán developed remarkable improvisational skills and was invited to perform in the world-famous Havana Jazz Festival with legend Chucho Valdés.
He has released multiple recordings including En el ocaso de la hormiga y el elefante which won the 2000 Grand Prix at Cubadisco, Soundbites, Dimensional, Aldo López-Gavilán en vivo, among others, as well as a DVD, Más allá del ocaso. In 2005, he was invited to join a group of prestigious Cuban pianists to create an album and documentary in honor of Frank Emilio, Amor y piano.
López-Gavilán was included in a documentary on the history of Latin jazz in Cuba entitled ¡Manteca, Mondongo y Bacalao con Pan!, directed by Pavel Giroud. He has also composed music for such documentaries as El Proceso: la historia no contada and Lester Hamlet’s film Casa vieja. He was invited by Claudio Abbado to perform as soloist in a special concert dedicated to the 250th anniversary of Mozart’s birth. Recently, he also became a member of renowned singer-songwriter Carlos Varela’s band for a South American tour.
“Aldo López-Gavilán is not only a formidable virtuoso, but also exceeds in works that require extraordinary color and fascinating sounds. His natural talent never suffers and his original thinking as an artist assures a performance of amazing playing and individuality. “ The London Times
“Simply a genius, a star “ Jazz pianist Chucho Valdés