Inspired by Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, Melissa Aldana explores the relationship between her experiences as a female saxophone player and Kahlo’s experience as a female visual artist working in realms dominated by men. Born in Santiago, Chile, Aldana began playing the saxophone when she was 6, tutored by her father, Marcos Aldana, a professional saxophonist. In her early teens she was performing in Santiago jazz clubs. At Berklee College of Music in Boston her tutors included Joe Lovano and Ralph Peterson. In 2013, she was the first woman and first South American musician to win the Thelonious Monk Jazz Saxophone Competition. Reporting on her win, the Washington Post described Aldana as representing “a new sense of possibility and direction in jazz.”
There is something special about the sound of the piano trio that propels master pianists to another level. The trios of Keith Jarrett and Brad Mehldau—to whom Brazilian pianist André Mehmari is often likened—provide evidence of the power of piano trio alchemy. Mehmari is joined by his trio, bassist Neymar Dias and drummer Sérgio Reze, blending ideas from pop, folk music, bossa nova, jazz and classical avant-garde to create hymns honoring friendship and dialogue that are among the greatest treasures of Brazilian music.
“Her tone is as beautiful as her personality… I am sure you will agree.”
“Mehmari isn’t simply prolific. His work has floored writers and fellow musicians around the globe.”