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AFRO - CUBAN DANCES

AS A FOLLOW UP TO HIS LATIN GRAMMY WINNING ALBUM, LATIN AMERICAN CLASSICS, VOL. 1, PIANIST KRISTHYAN BENITEZ FOCUSES ON MUSIC BY LEGENDARY CUBAN COMPOSER AND PIANIST, ERNESTO LECUONA.

HIS NEW RECORDING, AFRO-CUBAN DANCES, ON STEINWAY & SONS, INCLUDES TWO WORLD PREMIERES. 

The album begins with Ernesto Lecuona’s Suite de Danzas Afro-Cubanas. This is the first work in the 20th century that addresses, consciously by the composer, the Afro-Cuban heritage, the representation of percussion traditional from African folklore and themes in standard concert music repertoire, particularly notable at a time when there was a general rejection of the exaltation of the African heritage in Cuban culture. This is followed by two works from Lecuona’s 19th Century Dances that incorporate the roots of Latin Culture, which is called "Mestizaje" (blending of Spanish, indigenous and African cultures). Benitez also pays tribute to Ernesto’s sister, Ernestina Lecuona Casado, with his world premiere piano transcription of her song "Ahora que eres mío". Ernestina's music has been overshadowed by Ernesto’s and greatly deserves to be more widely performed, as it represents almost 50 years of the Cuban music tradition. The album ends with Benitez’s gorgeous improvisation inspired by Ernesto Lecuona's music titled "Ahi Viene Ernesto", also a world premiere recording.

“The world doesn't have a clear idea of how sophisticated and avant-garde Latin music is, and this album is a perfect example.

 

Ten tracks to enjoy and let yourself be

embraced by the expressive energy, the textures and the elegance that the sounds of the Caribbean evoke.”

Kristhyan Benitez

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