Jazz Plaza Festival
Havana, Jan. 19 (RHC)-- The 37th edition of the International Jazz Plaza Festival is in full swing in the Cuban capital, running through January 23rd.
The Avellaneda Hall of Teatro Nacional de Cuba hosted Tuesday’s official opening gala of the top event in Cuba dedicated to jazz, with two concerts –the first one by Cuban pianist, arranger and composer Ignacio ‘Nachito’ Herrera, who resides in Minnesota, the United States and the second concert by none other than Cuban showman, National Music Prize laureate Bobby Carcassés.
Nachito Herrera was accompanied on stage by other renowned jazz musicians, from different generations –all of them excellent representatives and promoters of Cuban music and culture. Invited guests included violin player Dagoberto González, percussionist Tomás Ramos and Habana Jazz orchestra.
Herrera, performed tunes like "Stella by Startlight", "Popurrí de Cha Cha Chá", "Guaguanco Para Chano" and "West Side Latin Jazz".
Nachito Herrera and his guests paid special tribute to Orquesta Aragón, Chano Pozo and Emiliano Salvador.
Meanwhile, the founder of Jazz Plaza Festival, Bobby Carcassés and his Big Band Afrojazz presented their show ‘Del Blues a la Timba-De la Timba al Jazz,’ which connects their roots to contemporary sounds.
The program included both, all-time classics and new, more contemporary pieces. The concert was specially dedicated to trumpet player José Manuel Crego –better known as El Greco, who died late last year here in Havana at the age of 63.
Also on Tuesday, the opening day, the Tito Junco Hall of Bertolt Brecht theatre and the Covarrubias Hall of Teatro Nacional de Cuba hosted concerts by young pianist Rodrigo García, Real Project, French pianist Laurent De Wilde and the group Mezcla.
Young talent Rodrigo García had several guests, all of them great pianists, representatives of different generations, from maestros Frank Fernández and José María Vitier to Manolito Simonet, Rolando Luna, Aldo López Gavilán and Alejandro Falcón, and also Havana Chamber Orchestra conducted by maestro Daiana García.
Highlights on Wednesday include a concert at Havana’s Teatro Nacional de Cuba by American saxophonist Donald Harrison and Cuba’s Joven Jazz Band, directed by maestro, National Music Prize laureate Joaquin Betancourt.
Nearly 40 musicians from around the world have converged in Havana to offer their art to Cuban audiences in the framework of the 37th edition of Jazz Plaza.