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Classic meets Cuba II

 

Klazz Brothers & Cuba Percussion
 
Since their establishment in the year 1999, the Klazzbrothers have been exploring the borders between classic and jazz, linking tradition and the desire for novelty, as well as the correspondence of music of different cultures. The success of the Klazzbrothers with audiences and critics is undisputed, eliciting
"... initial amazement followed by tumultuous applause." (translated from the Rheingau Echo).
"... Parody, great music, comedy and superlative interpretation in one - GREAT !..." is the judgement of the Dresdner Neueste Nachrichten and the Süddeutsche Zeitung concludes: "... A cheerful show then, between jazz and classic ... but never without background. Hopefully there'll be more of it soon ...".
 
Concerts in the Semperoper Dresden, at the Rheingau Music Festival and a record contract with SONY CLASSICAL followed.
 
Latin, swing, salsa, son, jazz, classic- apparently irreconcilable?
The Klazzbrothers navigate around the stylistic border zone - their home ground, with great ease. And yet their jazzy interpretations of classical pieces keep close to the original. Often it is only a matter of small shifts of rhythmic accent and - as if of its own accord - the theme of a sonata is transformed into a bold bossa nova rhythm. Or the original fundamental bass line is retained and expressive rich jazz chords are superimposed. Trademark of their music is however a confrontation of complex forms, structures and harmonies - a further development and creation of new, innovative sounds, preservation of the 'old' within the 'new'.
 
It is naturally to the credit of the Klazzbrothers that they write their own arrangements for their jazz-hungry interpretations and that they always like to include their own compositions in the programme. After all, complex structures are created in the course of their style of handling musical material, structures which require mastery in the casual, exalted, expressive style of jazz.
 
The music-making moment is always in the foreground. That is what brings the Klazzbrothers close to other musicians. In joint projects, for example with the Dresden Philharmonic Jazz Orchestra, founded by the Klazz Brother Kilian Forster, where the common features of jazz and classic are extended in symphonic complexity. Or with well-known soloists, such as the Klezmer clarinettist Giora Feidman, King of the Gypsy Violin, Roby Lakatos or the exceptional Czech musician, Iva Bitova.
 
Kilian Forster
Kilian Forster is solo bassist with the Dresden Philharmonic Orchestra. While studying at the Musical Academy of Munich, he was also member of the Festival Orchestra of Schleswig-Holstein as well as of the Tanglewood Festival Orchestra, working frequently with Leonard Bernstein. Kilian Forster was member of the Herbert von Karajan Foundation of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, then substitute solo bassist at the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, before becoming solo bassist with the Dresden Philharmonic. Solo and orchestra assignments brought him into many of the world's music capitals with conductors such as: L. Bernstein, S. Ozawa, S. Celibidache and R. Muti.
Chamber music and solo work also took him all over Germany and abroad. Kilian Forster has been playing musical instruments in the two styles of classic and jazz, since his early childhood. His versatility finds expression in his activities as classical soloist, chamber and orchestra musician, jazz musician in duo to big band, as arranger, composer and conductor. His is founder of the Dresden Philharmonic Jazz Orchestra.
 
Tim Hahn
Tim Hahn studied playing drums in Dresden, Rotterdam and Los Angeles. He took part in numerous master classes and workshops, such as at the Drummers Collective in New York and the Musician Institute in Los Angeles. He is in demand as a session and studio drummer and has participated in many CD productions by well-known artists. Concert tours with his own ensembles took him to Austria, Switzerland, the USA and China. Apart form numerous television appearances with artists like José Carreras, Andrea Bocelli and Roger Whittacker, Tim Hahn is also founding member of the European Jazz Collective as well as drummer in Europe's most famous Queen tribute band, MerQury
 
Bruno Böhmer Camacho

In spite of his young age Bruno has been able to outstand as one of the most eminent pianists in the Latin music scene in Germany. He is the grandson of the famous Colombian composer and promoter of Caribbean folklore, Angel Maria Camacho y Cano. Bruno started his piano studies at an early age under the guidance of his mother, Lyra Mercedes Camacho and later with the German pianist Günther Renz, who also introduced him to traditional harmony, composition and arrangement.

At the age of 9 he already directed the jazz band “Latin Sampling”, which played at several important jazz festivals such as Fesujazz, Sierra Mar y Jazz and the internationally renowned Barranquijazz. In 2002 the quintet was awarded the first prize at the “Jugend Jazzt”-Festival in Bonn.

When Bruno was 17 years old he began his musical studies at the Folkwangschule of the University of Essen, taking piano as his principal instrument and receiving lessons with legendary masters such as Peter Herborn, Thomas Hufschmidt and Peter Walter. In May 2006 he was awarded the “Folkwang Preis” as best jazz student of the University.

In the same year Bruno founded the record label and production company ALLÁ, with one of his band mates and the Ecuadorian producer and sound engineer Daniel Orejuela Flores. “Latin Sampling” released their first LP “Secrets” under this label.

In 2008 Bruno received a full scholarship for the Berklee School of Music in Boston.

His talent and expertise allow him to participate in different projects and productions alongside famous artists such as Roy Louis, Stevie Woods, Ulf Stricker, Kimbiza, Cesar Perez, DJ Sammy, European Jazz Project and Nene Vásquez. Since 2010 he is the new pianist of Klazz Brothers & Cuba Percussion.
 
Alexis Herrera Estevez
Alexis Herrera Estevez was born in Guantánamo, home of the Cuban soneros, began to play percussion at the age of 8, took lessons at the music school and made such rapid progress that he soon gave lessons there himself, also playing in the city's concert orchestra. Alexis Herrera Estevez gave concerts with many different jazz and salsa bands, before joining the Havana Ensemble in 1997, one of the best and most innovative Latin Jazz ensembles of Cuba. He was able to distinguish himself with his extraordinary talent as a timbalist with the Havana Ensemble. He simply astonishes the audience with his spectacular feeling for rhythm and his explosive style of playing. After a concert, Ralph Irrizary gave Alexis his own set of timbales as a present, a token of his admiration. He gave concerts with Tito Puente, Chuchu Valdez and Arturo Sandoval, he has made recordings with Ketama, Luis Enrique, Ana Belen and was invited by the legendary guitarist of the Buena Vista Social Club, Compay Segundo.
 
Elio Rodriguez Luis
Elio Rodriguez Luis was born in Camagüey, has been playing congas since his earliest childhood, already performing with diverse salsa and descarga bands during his days at school. He moved to the capital city Havana in the 90s. Elio Rodriguez Luis played with some of the most well-known bands of the Cuban music scene (Charanga Latina, Rumbavana and Octava Pesadilla), perfecting his knowledge of a whole assortment of styles of Cuban and international music. He too has been member of the Havana Ensemble since 1997, an excellent conga player particularly famous for his vigorous sound and his fascinating drive. Tours have taken him to New York, Miami, Venezuela, Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Peru and France.
The CD with the Havana Ensemble (Mambomania with famous mambos of the 50s) was particularly acclaimed in specialist publications on account of the powerful percussion group (with Elio Rodriguez Luis and Alexis Herrera Estevez).
 

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