Latin American Music Center Fall 2014 Course Offerings

The Latin American Music Center is pleased to announce its Fall 2014 course offerings. Contact your adviser to find out how a course from the Latin American Music Center fits into your academic program. For more details regarding these courses email us at lamc[@] or visit

MUS-M 413 – Latin American and Latino Popular Music and Culture. Course is cross-listed with MUS-Z 413 and LATS-L 400

Meets:  Monday and Wednesday 6:30 pm-7:45 pm, Room M 242

Instructor: José Francisco Cortés-Álvarez

A survey of the popular and traditional musics of Latin America and the Latino population in the United States, from the late-19th century into the present. Through the course students engage with the geographical, historical, political, economic and social contexts within which each genre is produced and consumed, as well as the relevant composers, performers and instruments of each region and genre. Students from all disciplines may take the course to fulfill their individual major’s requirements. Activities outside class may be scheduled.

MUS-X 414 – Latin American Popular Music Ensemble (LAPME)

Meets: Tuesday and Thursday 2:00 pm-3:45 pm, and Friday 3:30 pm-6:00 pm. Room MA B012

Instructor: Daniel Duarte

Dedicated to the performance of Latin American repertoire, the ensemble explores original Latin American genres and their corresponding performance practices through arranging and performing pieces from both the popular and classical repertoire. The LAPME often receives as guests faculty from Indiana University in addition to having its own arrangers and composers in residency. The LAPME has its own performing library with original music and arrangements especially crafted for the ensemble.

MUS-M 690 cross listed with MUS-M 510 – Latin American Art Music in the long 19th century

Meets: Monday and Wednesday 9:45 am-11:00 am

Instructor: Paul Borg

The countries of Latin America share a musical heritage rooted in their common Colonial experience.  From initial contact around 1500 until independence in the early 19th century, music and the other arts exhibit a complicated relationship between Spanish and Portuguese traditions as practiced by European settlers and their descendants and indigenous traditions that were both repressed yet partially preserved.

This seminar is a survey of the music that survives from Colonial Latin America, tracing its stylistic changes in light of contemporary European practice and local uses.  Topics include surviving source materials, music’s function in the various strata of society, musical genres and their defining characteristics, musical instruments, and composers, performers, and audiences.  Coursework consists of assigned reading and listening, class discussion, an individual research project culminating in a paper and class presentation, and possible performance opportunity.

Jacobs School’s Latin American Music Center to receive IU award

The IU Jacobs School of Music’s Latin American Music Center staff.

The IU Jacobs School of Music’s Latin American Music Center staff.

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – The Latin American Music Center at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music has received the university’s 2014 Latino Faculty and Staff Council Distinguished Group/Event Award for its events and concert series in the 2013-14 academic year.

The Latino Faculty and Staff Council Latino Awards recognize important contributions by Indiana University undergraduate students, graduate students, faculty and staff. Through these awards, the council wishes to distinguish and empower individuals whose efforts have contributed to a positive campus environment in tandem with helping support retention of Latinos at IU. The awards are also meant to highlight exemplary academic and professional work.

The Latin American Music Center will accept the award for Distinguished Group/Event for its participation in service, mentoring and promoting diversity initiatives that have enhanced and supported Latinos on campus. The award also recognizes individuals, groups or events that have developed awareness/programs in the area of culture, arts, health, economy, language or education.

“The LAMC team is quite honored to receive this important recognition, which we accept with great enthusiasm and humility,” said Erick Carballo, interim director of the center. “We have had an extremely productive year and are quite satisfied with both the continuation of well-established activities that the Bloomington community has come to expect and look forward to, and the introduction of new ones that have had a very warm welcome.”

Some of the center’s events include the Salón Latino–Chamber Music Series, focusing on chamber music from Latin America and initiated in 2012 during Carballo’s tenure, and the Annual Latin Valentine Concert. In its fifth edition, this year’s Valentine concert introduced Bloomington audiences to Latin American zarzuela—a staged musical theater genre of Spanish origin that found a receptive audience worldwide during the 19th and early 20th centuries.

Other offerings include the Latin American Music Recording Competition, offered every spring and leading to a concert and a professionally produced CD recorded by the winner, and the Latin American Music Center Guitar Ensemble, featured every semester since the early 2000s with the Latin American Popular Music Ensemble and as an independent group.

In addition, the center’s Guest Lecture Series offers presentations from distinguished performers and scholars who come to visit the center, such as Fulbright Scholar and pianist Cristina Capperlli-Gerling, singer and guitarist Tomás Lozano, early music scholar David Castelo and Mexican guitar octect Sicarú.

The Latin American Music Center team will receive the award on Friday, April 25, at Oliver Winery.

¿Sabes qué? Latin American Rock and Nueva Canción

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The Latin American Music Center will present “¿Sabes qué? Latin American Rock and Nueva Canción” at 8:00pm on Thursday, April 10th, 2014, at the Ivy Tech John Waldron Performing Arts Center (on the corner of 4th St and Walnut). It is free and open to the public.

The Latin American Popular Music Ensemble, under the direction of Guido Sánchez-Portuguez, will perform original arrangements of classics from the Nueva Canción, Nueva Trova, and Latin Rock repertory. As an addition to the eclectic works the ensemble will also perform Brazilian choros, and Argentine Nuevo tango. The arrangements have been prepared for the unique instrument combination of the LAPME—guitar, piano, bass, percussion, flute, saxophone, trombone, and voice—by LAPME director Sánchez-Portuguez and current IU students Francisco Cortés-Álvarez and Bruno Cabrera.

Nueva Canción and Nueva Trova emerged during the 1960s and 1970s, coinciding with the peak of the American folk music revival. Latin American artists made us of traditional and folk music elements, in particular the specific rhythms, melodies, and instruments of traditional genres. Yet the highly poetic lyrics spoke of the social, political, and economic struggles, inequalities, and injustices of the oppressed classes. Nueva Canción artists were extremely influential for later generations of popular musicians, especially Latin Rock artists who continued to voice the struggles of the people through their lyrics.

The music presented in “¿Sabes qué?” draws a connection between the Nueva Canción and Nueva Trova artists, and their influence on more recent popular music and rock musicians throughout Latin America. The songs’ style and genres show the musical diversity of these movements, from tango to samba to landó to cumbia to Cuban son to rock.

It is free and open to the public holding tickets. Tickets will be available to the public 2 hours before the event at the Waldron Arts Center.

Salón Latino: March 27th, 2014


The Latin American Music Center (LAMC) proudly presents its fourth chamber concert in the series “Salón Latino.” The event features some of the finest present and former students from the Jacobs School of Music, as well as invited guests, performing an all-Latin American chamber music program. Participants include the Hammond Piano Duo, Larchemere String Quartet, Yuriria Rodríguez, LAMC Chamber Musicians, visiting Brazilian scholar and pianist Cristina Capparelli-Gerling, and guest conductor Juan Felipe Orrego.

In celebration of the 95th birthday of the founder of the LAMC Professor Emeritus Juan Orrego-Salas, his son Juan Felipe Orrego will conduct one of his father’s most popular works: Canciones castellanas, Op. 20. Back in 1949, maestro Juan Orrego-Salas traveled from his natal Chile to Europe as a guest of the British Council and the French and Italian governments. On this tour he conducted the world première of his Canciones castellanas, which was selected for the XXIII Festival of the International Society of Contemporary Music (ISCM) held in Palermo and Taormina, Sicily.

In addition the LAMC will also present its latest recording project FireProof: Latin American Music for Two Pianos, recorded by the Hammond Piano Duo. The album features music for two pianos or four-hand piano by Latin American composers, including Roberto Cedeño (Venezuela), Francisco Cortés-Álvarez (Mexico), Alfonso Montecino and Juan Orrego-Salas (Chile), Ileana Pérez Velázquez (Cuba), and Astor Piazzolla (Argentina).

The program for this Salón Latino also includes compositions and arrangements by Ignacio Cervantes (Cuba), Paul Desenne (Venezuela), Guido Sánchez-Portuguez (Costa Rica), Gabriela Ortiz (Mexico), and Francisco Cortés-Álvarez (Mexico). The concert will take place in Auer Hall at 8:00 p.m. on Thursday, 27 March 2014. Admission to the concert is free.

Latin American Guitar Ensemble Presents “Elogio a la danza”

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In Latin America music and dance manifestations developed from the mixture of cultures that populated the continent, where the combination of Amerindian, European, and African cultures gave birth to new music, rhythms, and dances.  The guitar was an important medium for the development and dissemination of these new cultural manifestations, as one of the most predominant instruments since the first explorers arrived in the continent.

The Latin American Guitar Ensemble will feature a repertoire focused on various traditional dances from Cuba, Mexico, Peru, Bolivia, Chile, Brazil, and Argentina, while emphasizing the role of the guitar as a fundamental part of Latin American Culture. Since the early 14th century, dance and instrumental music genres have been associated and organized in sets; from the baroque suite to street music, dance has served as a vehicle for composers to write works that blend popular and classical traditions.

Both traditions merge in the work of the Cuban Composer, Leo Brouwer’s piece Acerca del cielo, el aire y la sonrisa for eight guitars, where typical rhythms of his native Cuba are combined with minimalist and post-modernist elements, as seen in the use of quotation of renaissance composer Orlando de Lassus’s O la oche Bom echo. The ensemble explores a more popular aspect of Latin American Guitar music through Mexican boleros’ typical trio setting of male singers accompanied by requinto (smaller guitar/tuned a 5th higher) and two guitars.

The Andean region will be represented with two works, Los Andes by Roque Carbajo and Three Chilean Pieces by Carlos López; the first evokes indigenous elements, such as the huayno, an Amerindian dance from Peru and Bolivia, and the second work is structured by two Chilean dances, the “refalosa” and “cueca.”

East of the Andes, La Plata region  served as the birth place of Argentine dance, the tango. The genre experienced a great transformation as a musical style through artists such as Carlos Gardel and Astor Piazzolla. In the piece “Tango Suite” – a collection of tangos arranged by Daniel Duarte and based on Nostalgia del Rio de la Plata  by Julio Cesar Oliva – the ensemble will convey this transformation and present the traits it developed over more than 100 years.

The “Brazilian tango” or maxixe, is a Polka with Afro-Brazilian elements; the composer Paulo Bellinati uses the maxixe as the basis for his work A furiosa (The Furious), featuring a special arrangement which includes a  traditional Brazilian guitar, the cavaquinho. Deeply influenced by the bossa-nova movement, Bellinati was exposed to the work of Vinicius de Moraes, a poet and composer whose 100th birth date we celebrate this year. As one of the pillars of the bossa nova movement Vinicius helped transform Brazilian samba. The work Berimbau, by Vinicius and the guitarist Baden Powell, explores a new musical genre created by the two artists, the Afro-samba, an off-shoot of the bossa nova where elements of African culture are integrated to the music.

Join the Guitar Ensemble on Wednesday, March 12 at 7 pm in  Ford Hall for this wonderful event!  Daniel Duarte coordinates the ensemble and the concert will feature guests Daniel Stein, violin, Francisco Ortega and Rafael Campos, tenors, and the winner of the LAMC Recording Competition 2014, baritone Bruno Sandes.





Winners Concert: Latin American Music Recording Competition

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The Latin American Music Center is pleased to announce the Winners Recital for the 2014 Latin American Music Recording Competition.  Baritone Bruno Sandes and pianist Hanmo Qian, will perform a full concert at the winner’s recital next Thursday, March 6th at 8 pm in Auer Hall.

Sandes is a master’s voice student with Professor Robert Harrison, and Hanmo Qian is a doctoral student in piano with Professor Karen Shaw. The concert will feature music for voice and piano by Brazilian composers. They will record a professional CD, fully produced by the LAMC of the repertory presented in the recital. The CD will be released at a later date by the LAMC. CDs of past competition winners can be viewed and purchased at:

IU’s Latin American Center prepares Valentine concert

By Holly Hays


When it premiered in 1876 in Bogota, Colombia, El Castillo misterioso told a story of a love triangle wrapped in theft, murder and mistaken identities.

By the time the Jacobs School of Music’s Latin American Popular Music Ensemble (LAPME) performs it on Feb. 13, it will not have been performed in public for 137 years.

Guest conductor Carlos Botero leads rehearsal for this year's Latin American Music Center's Valentine's Day celebration in Bloomington, Ind. Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014.

Guest conductor Carlos Botero leads rehearsal for this year’s Latin American Music Center’s Valentine’s Day celebration in Bloomington, Ind. Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014.

The piece, a Latin American zarzuela influenced by Italian bel canto, is one of three to be performed during the Latin American Music Center’s fifth annual Latin American Valentine event. This year’s performance features three zarzuelas or Latin American operettas.

The three zarzuelas featured in this year’s performance include the Colombian El Castillo misterioso; “Cecilia Valdés,” is a Cuban zarzuela based on a novel by the same name; and “Cofresí” is rooted in the story of Roberto Confresi, a renowned Puerto Rican pirate.

Music and vocals will be provided by current and former students from the Jacobs School of Music and will also feature guest performers from the LAMC.

Zarzuelas originated in 19th century Spain, but made their way to Spanish-speaking Latin America, where they took on a form of their own, said Erick Caballo, interim director of the LAMC.

“Even though they take from the tradition that is coming from Europe, they have a definite tainted color of different traditions from each country,” he said.

This year’s production manager, Yuri Rodriguez, said each of the pieces has roots in a different Latin American country, with segments from Cuban, Colombian and Puerto Rican zarzuelas being featured in the program.

“It’s a lyric genre that combines classical music with folklore, traditional music, and stories and aesthetics of Latin America,” she said. “If you compare it to opera, it’s much lighter in the music and it’s much lighter in the themes that it touches on.”

Erick Carballo, director of the Latin American Music Center, laughs as they prepare for the next part of rehearsal for this year's Latin American Music Center's Valentine's Day celebration in Bloomington, Ind. Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014.

Erick Carballo, director of the Latin American Music Center, laughs as they prepare for the next part of rehearsal for this year’s Latin American Music Center’s Valentine’s Day celebration in Bloomington, Ind. Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014.

Caballo said the choice to perform zarzuelas this year made sense, since the pieces are based in love stories.

“Love is such a prevalent thing for the zarzuela,” Caballo said. “We thought it would be appropriate for that.”

Caballo, who is originally from Costa Rica, said he will also be performing with the ensemble during the show. He said he is honored to perform with the Latin American Popular Music Ensemble because it allows him to revisit his roots.

“In Costa Rica, as a musician, I was always involved in performing popular music,” he said. “It is always nice to be in touch with that older part.”

Rodriguez, also a native of Costa Rica, echoed that sentiment. Rodriguez was originally a soprano understudy, but was bumped up to the show when the original performer discovered she would not be able to perform.

“When you perform music that is from your own culture, the expressivity just multiplies completely and the joy of performing your own music multiplies,” she said.

Rodriguez said this year’s lineup differs from previous shows due to its uniqueness to Indiana University, as this will be the first time Jacobs School of Music students will have performed zarzuelas.

She added that the team has been working diligently to arrange a show that features music that, in the case of El Castillo misterioso, has not been performed in hundreds of years.

“Because this music didn’t exist in audio and some of it didn’t exist in paper, we have two arrangers and two composers that have been working really, really hard to create the music from scratch,” she said.

Rafael Campos, lower right, Jessica Usherwood, left, Yuriria Rodriguez and Marysol Quevedo rehearse for this year’s Latin American Music Center’s Valentine’s Day celebration. The concert is scheduled for 8 p.m. Thursday.

Rafael Campos, lower right, Jessica Usherwood, left, Yuriria Rodriguez and Marysol Quevedo rehearse for this year’s Latin American Music Center’s Valentine’s Day celebration. The concert is scheduled for 8 p.m. Thursday.

One of the guest music directors, Carlos Botero, said the group has been preparing the pieces since the beginning of the fall semester. He said his job right now is to finish polishing the pieces so they are performance-ready.

“I am making sure everything sounds the way I think the composer wrote it,” he said.

He said it has been exciting to work with a group of performers who come from different ethnic backgrounds. He said the cultural variation adds to the overall feeling of the music.

Botero, a native of Colombia, compared the mixing of cultures and performance preparation to preparing a meal.

“(It is important to) be sure we play with the right flavor. Too much of one or too few of the other, it won’t come out right,” he said. “I like the food analogy because that’s what Latin culture is all about: music and food.”

Rodriguez said the music, though it will be performed in Spanish and is a repertoire largely unknown to the audience, will resonate with those in attendance because of its beauty.

“People will relate to it, even though the words are unknown,” she said. “Everything sounds familiar to the ear.”

She said the music is easy to digest, carries light themes and presents melodies that will stick with audience members long after the performance is over.

“I am a great fan of melodies,” she said. “There are all kinds of beautiful music, but these zarzuelas have melodies that really stick to your ears.”

Rodriguez said she has enjoyed the fusion that the zarzuelas present and hopes the audience members will leave the concert singing.

“The result of combining traditional, popular and Latin American music and classical turned out to be a really beautiful result,” she said.


© Herald Times 2014

Fifth Annual Latin Valentine concert: Estás en mi corazón


The Latin American Music Center (LAMC) is proud to present its Fifth Annual Latin Valentine concert: Estás en mi corazón… (You belong to my heart). The repertoire was selected from major Latin American zarzuelas, a staged musical theater of Spanish origin, that found a receptive audience in the New World, leading to the development of localized zarzuela traditions. The concert features numbers from Cecilia Valdés, by Cuban Gonzalo Roig; Cofresí by Puerto Rican Rafael Hernández; El castillo misterioso, by Colombian Juan María Ponce de León, and other works by Cuban Ernesto Lecuona.

The Latin American Popular Music Ensemble will be led by special guest conductor Carlos Botero from Colombia. The LAPME will accompany solo and ensemble singers from the Jacobs School of Music, who will enchant the audiences with love stories born from the fusion of folk tales, native music styles, and classical music.

Some of these works are currently being reconstructed in their native countries from their original manuscripts, as musicians and audiences rediscover them after years of historical oversight. The LAMC is presenting new arrangements of these works by Francisco Cortés-Alvarez, Bruno Cabrera, and Guido Sánchez-Portuguez.

Among the special guests for this occasion, the LAMC has invited  Spanish pianist and guest faculty Javier Arrébola, and Costa Rican soprano and IU-Alumna Yuriria Rodríguez.

“This is one of the LAMC’s most anticipated concerts, and we are happy that it has become one of our most expected events for the IU and Bloomington community…” said Erick Carballo, director of the LAMC. The LAMC is also very proud to present a genre of music that has never been performed in a major venue at the JSoM.

Estás en mi corazón will be presented on Thursday, February 13th, 2014, at 8:00pm in Auer Hall, providing the Bloomington community with the perfect event for a Latin Valentine evening.


LAMC Announces Finalists of Fourth Annual Latin American Music Recording Competition

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The Latin American Music Center (LAMC), with the support of the Guillermo and Lucille Espinosa Fund, presents the final round of the Fourth Annual Latin American Music Recording Competition, which will take place Sunday, February 2nd, at 4:00 PM, at Auer Hall. This event is free and open to the public.

The LAMC received entries of the highest quality, and appreciates the time and effort invested in the submissions by the participating students. After careful deliberation, the competition committee chose three finalists, who will compete in the final round concert (in no particular order): saxophonist Ricardo Martínez (student of Otis Murphy); harpist Emmanuel Padilla (student of Susann McDonald); and baritone Bruno Sandes Baritone and pianist Hanmo Qian (students of Robert Harrison and Karen Shaw, respectively).

This Recording Competition evaluates the competitors on two aspects: a performance component, where competitors display their technical ability, knowledge of style, and artistic interpretation; and a research component, where competitors must search for repertoire from our Latin American Music collections at the Cook Music Library, and select pieces that are less known but deserve to be recorded. The competitors are asked to provide a recording project proposal, justifying their repertoire choice and providing a rationale for the project. The jury, which will be conformed of IU-JSoM faculty members and distinguished members of the community, will pay close attention to both aspects of the competition.

Past winners of the Latin American Music Recording Competition include 2013’s Nicholas Mariscal (cello), 2012’s Daniel Inamorato (piano), and 2011’s Colin Sorgi (violin) and Jooeun Pak (piano).

The winner of the fourth annual competition will be recording a CD, fully produced by the Latin American Music Center’s production team and will perform a solo recital within the JSoM calendar of performances.

With the main objective of promoting the Latin American repertoire among gifted young artists while generating recordings that promote lesser known works from Latin America, the LAMC invites the IU and Bloomington community to the final round concert, which promises to bring together the best of Latin American Art Music, talent and creativity.

LAMC Spring 2014 Guest Lecture Series: Twentieth-Century Piano Music


The Latin American Music Center is proud to announce a series of lecture-recitals offered throughout the Spring semester by visiting Fulbright Scholar, Brazilian pianist Cristina Capparelli Gerling. This series of lecture recitals will present and discuss key works from the twentieth-century Latin American Piano repertoire, exploring compositional aspects and instrumental demands in several genres, highlighting their distinctive social, historical, and cultural implications and backgrounds.

The “Piano Sonatinas”

Tuesday, January 21st, 2014
7:00 pm
Ford Hall
Free and open to the public

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The “Piano Sonatinas” lecture will demonstrate and discuss concepts related to the various aspects of Latin American musical production for the piano such as the experimental, the intimate, the domestic, the miniaturized, and at a times the instructional. All of these aspects fit elegantly and effortlessly within neoclassical formal paradigms as shown in the works of Latin American composers Juan Bautista Plaza (Venezuela); Héctor Tosar (Uruguay); Roque Cordero (Panamá); Luis A. Escobar (Colombia), R. A. Amengual (Chile) as well as a host of composers from Brazil and Argentina. The sheer number of Sonatinas composed last century is in itself a mark of the variety of approaches and the richness of this repertoire.

The “Piano Sonata”

Tuesday, February 18th, 2014
7:00 pm
Ford Hall
Free and open to the public


The “Piano Sonata” lecture will demonstrate and discuss both the persistence of neoclassical formal paradigms as well as the diversity of compositional and instrumental approaches utilized in Latin American Piano Sonatas during the twentieth century, such as found in the works of Argentineans José María Castro, Alberto Ginastera, Carlos Guastavino and Roberto G. Morillo; Brazilians Lorenzo Fernândez, Francisco Mignone, Camargo Guarnieri, Claudio Santoro, Edino Krieger, Breno Blauth, Esther Scliar and Marlos Nobre; the Chilean Juan Orrego-Salas; the Mexicans Rodolfo Halffter e Carlos R. Chávez. This lecture will introduce a crucial topic of discussion: influences, confluences, dialogues and appropriations of models as practiced by Latin American composers in relation to their American and European counterparts.


Thursday, March 13th, 2014
7:00 pm
Ford Hall
Free and open to the public


Variation processes and variation techniques found in single and/or collected works designated as Dances, Etudes and Toccatas as well as works titled as Theme and Variations proper will be presented at this third proposed lecture in order to illustrate compositional and instrumental techniques practiced throughout Latin American mainly but not exclusively by Argentinean, Brazilian and Chilean composers as they manipulate original or appropriated themes.