Venue: Overture Hall
Friday, Oct. 6, 2023
$25 or $35
I am so excited to bring my childhood experience of listening to the music of my Cuban heritage while growing up in Miami to my home in Madison. This program will demonstrate the tremendous versatility of our Overture Concert Organ in a way that you all have not heard before. I contacted my childhood guitar teacher, Alvaro Bermudez, to help put together a band of some of the best classical and jazz musicians in Miami. Magela Herrera, flute, Alvaro Bermudez, guitar, Yarelis Gandul, percussion, and Alex Hernandez, bass, will join forces with me and our Mighty Klais to present a bilingual program of both classical and popular Latin-American music. We will even premiere the lyrics that my grandfather wrote to one of the most popular Cuban songs of his day. I cannot wait to bring this joyous and emotional event to our Madison community. — Greg Zelek
Estoy muy contento de poder traer la música de mi herencia Cubana y crianza en Miami a mi comunidad de Madison. Éste programa demostrará la tremenda versatilidad de nuestro Órgano de Concierto de Overture de manera única. Me comunique con el profesor de guitarra de mi juventud, Álvaro Bermúdez, y él me ayudó a formar un grupo de algunos de los mejores artistas de Miami de música clásica y de jazz. Magela Herrera, en la flauta, Álvaro Bermúdez, en la guitarra, Yarelis Gandul, en percusión, y Alex Hernández, en el bajo, se unirán conmigo y nuestro Mighty Klais para presentar un programa bilingüe de música clásica y popular latinoamericana. También se estrenará una estrofa que mi abuelo compuso para una de las canciones Cubanas más populares de su época. ¡Espero verlos para este evento muy personal y repleto de ritmo y melodía! – Greg Zelek
Margarita Lecuona, Babalú
César Portillo de la Luz, Contigo a la Distancia
Ernesto Lecuona, Andalucia, Danza Negra, La Comparsa
Astor Piazzolla, Oblivion, Libertango
Moisés Simons, El Manisero “The Peanut Vendor”
J.S. Bach, “Little” Fugue in G minor, BWV 578
Armando Manzanero, Somos Novios “It’s Impossible”
Ramón Noble, Fantasia-Toccata
Alberto Domínguez, Perfidia
Miguel Matamoros, Son de La Loma
Take Note: Drinks Allowed in Overture Hall
As of this season, drinks are allowed inside Overture Hall during all Madison Symphony Orchestra concerts. Refreshments may be purchased at bars and concession stands located around the Overture Hall lobby before each concert and during intermission. Please enjoy food in the lobby and unwrap any candy or cough drops before the performance begins. Thank you!
I continue to be impressed by the way in which Greg Zelek creates programs which combine the traditions of the organ with modern innovation in music… Zelek’s approach and his flair in executing it is the path to the future
Always entertained. Greg is both extremely talented and a very genuine entertainer!
Fernando and Carla Alvarado
Audrey Dybdahl, in memory of Philip Dybdahl
Greg Zelek is the Principal Organist and Elaine and Nicholas Mischler Curator of the Overture Concert Organ.
Magela Herrera grew up between two worlds: one, her family’s deep ties to a large set of unique traditions influenced mostly by Afrocuban music; the other, the years she spent learning and studying classical music at the Conservatory of Music in her native Havana.
Praised often for her unique background that also includes Latin jazz and Euro jazz, Herrera developed her incredible instincts and keen musical chops from 2004 through 2011 as a member of Mezcla – one of Cuba’s leading jazz and fusion groups. Towards the end of her tenure in 2010, she was nominated for Best Solo Flute from the New York based magazine, Jazz Corner, for the tune “Quien tiene el ritmo” (who’s got the rhythm) on Mezcla’s album I’ll See You in Cuba. The recording was also nominated for Best Album.
Through the years, Herrera has shared the stage with an extensive list of acclaimed international artists including Chucho Valdez, Roberto Garcia, Ruy Lopez Nussa, Barbara Dane, Ralph Alessis, Geir Lysne, Jan Eggum, Sverre Indris Joner and Hovedoen Social Club, Alejandro Vargas, Sanskriti Shrestha, Oslo Chamber Orchestra, Eliel Lazo and The Cuban Funk Machine.
She has also performed at the Oslo Jazz Festival, Oslo World Music Festival, Copenhagen Jazz Festival, Lunatos Festival (Toronto) and at various jazz clubs and venues worldwide.
Herrera’s adventurous, confidence building road from holding court with Mezcla to her emergence as a solo performer and bandleader included living in Norway for a number of years, learning all about jazz improvisation and freer forms of musical expression while gigging there and earning Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Jazz Performance from the Norwegian Academy of Music. This was a major shift in mindset from her early days studying classical music at the Conservatory of Music in her native Havana and earning her first Bachelor’s degree in classical music from the Instituto Superior de Arte (ISA).
Alex Hernandez is a first generation Cuban-American born in Miami, Fl. He studied electric and upright bass in South Florida with Matt Bonelli, Dennis Marks and Luis Gomez-Imbert. He later continued his studies in NYC with the grand master Ron Carter as well as lessons with Andy Gonzales, Larry Grenadier and Orlando LeFlemming.
Alex has performed, toured and recorded around the world with an array of artists, most notably as a member of Jerry Gonzales’s Madrid All Star band, with Diego “el Cigala” and Bebo Valdes and on Joan Manuel Serrat’s “Versos en la Boca” world tour. In NYC, Alex was a member of the Sugar Hill Quartet, one of Harlem’s longest standing house bands holding down steady gigs at the Lennox Lounge, Minton’s and Smoke and accompanying artist such as Lillias White, Gregory Porter and George Coleman. Alex was also a house musician at Spanish Harlem’s FB Lounge which featured NYC’s prominent salsa and Latin jazz musicians. He was also a member of Bobby Sanabria’s Quarteto Ache and Big Band and was featured on the 2008 Grammy nominated “Big Band Urban Folktales” album. Alex also held the bass chair with tap dancing phenom, Savion Glover, performing at jazz clubs, theaters and dance festivals across the U.S.
Alex has performed with Ira Sullivan, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Arturo Sandoval, Nestor Torres, Braulio, Wynton Marsalis, Kenny Barron, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Casandra Wilson, Gary Bartz, Jeremy Pelt, Ronnie Mathews, Mireya Ramos, Jonnny O’neil, Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards, Paquito D’Rivera, Giovanni Hidalgo, Candido Camero, Bob Franceschini, Vince Cherico, Ray Barreto, Ludwig Afonso, Horacio “el Negro” Hernandez, Cliff Almond, Hector Martignon, Donny McCaslin, Joel Frahm, Troy Roberts, Mike Rodriguez, Ravi Coltrane, Camille Thurman, Martin Bejerano and many, many more.
Yarelis Gandul is a Percussionist, Singer, Composer, and Writer. She currently resides in the city of Miami. She studied Percussion in Cuba and as a professional she performed with several bands Nationally and Internationally. She joined the “Alba Tropical Jazz Band”, made up of a selection of the most recognized young people of Cuban Jazz. She resided in Italy where she performed as a percussionist in groups such as Jestofunk.
In the City of Miami, she has taught music and percussion and forming groups, making music on Television Shows, Clubs and Festivals with world-renowned artists such as Bobby Carcasses, Nestor Torres, Ed Calle, Jose Negroni, Jose Luis Barba, Donato Poveda , Francisco Cespedes, Jane Bunnett & Maqueque, among others. She authored “De Tiempos y Siluetas”. Published in 2022 by Editorial Primigenios, Poesia. Miami. She has been recording her single album “Un Canto” with Peer music 2020. “Guajira Soy”. 2022