Campus: CSU Los Angeles -- May 31, 2002

Cal State L.A. to Offer New Degree Option in Afro-Latin Music

The CSULA Afro-Latin Ensemble recently completed an extraordinary one-week stay in Cuba, where California State University, Los Angeles students rehearsed, received private lessons and performed two concerts. The first concert took place in the town of Pinar del Rio, alongside Orquesta Cumbre. The second was in Havana, where the students opened for NG La Banda at La Casa de la Musica de Egrem, the most important salsa-performing venue in the city. The award-winning student ensemble is the first musical group from the United States dedicated primarily to the performance of Cuban music to be invited to perform in Cuba.

The Department of Music at Cal State L.A. is proud to announce a new Master of Music degree option in Afro-Latin Music to be offered Fall Quarter 2002. As part of this option, Cal State L.A. students will be required to take courses in "History of Afro-Latin Music," "Advanced Arranging for Afro-Latin Ensembles," as well as "Seminars in Afro-Latin Music."

An essential part of this program is performing in the CSULA Afro-Latin Ensemble and in the Latin Percussion Ensemble. Within this setting, the students will perform music from the major musical cultures of Latin America including Cuba, Brazil, Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico.

They will also benefit from the experience of appearing at concerts and festivals.

In the past years, the CSULA Afro-Latin Ensemble (formerly, the CSULA Latin Jazz Ensemble) has performed with a range of guest artists, including Edgardo Cambón, Danilo Lozano, José Antonio Rodriguez, Frank Emilio Flynn, Carlos Puerto, Bobby Rodriguez, Ismael Quintana "Changuito," and Pancho Terry. The CSULA Latin Jazz Ensemble has been recognized as one of the best student ensembles in California performing Latin jazz, salsa, and Afro-Cuban music.
The Cal State L.A. students also have participated in a variety of master classes and lectures from prominent musicologists and musicians, such as Olavo Alen, Joaquin Betancourt, Rigoberto Lopez, Bobby Shew, and Los Muñequitos de Matanzas.

This new M.M. option in Afro-Latin Music, which comprises a core of 35 units, will provide advanced student musicians the opportunity to learn traditional as well as contemporary Latin styles and to hone their skills as performers, composers and arrangers.

For more information on the new M.M. option, contact coordinator Paul De Castro, Music Department, Cal State L.A., at (323) 343-4079.


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