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Hot Cuban Classic
Piano Latin Jazz


Nachito

Ignacio "Nachito" Herrera stunned Cuban audiences at the age of twelve in performing "Rachmaninoff's Concerto No. 2" with the Havana Symphony Orchestra. In the late 1990's, Nachito joined the famed Cuban Orquestra "Cubanismo" as its pianist, musical director and arranger. With its world wide appeal, "Cubanismo" performed at many of the worlds finest concert halls and prestigious festivals throughout Europe, Far East, Canada, Central and South America and the United States. "Explosive. Crowd Pleasing. Rhythmically intense. Romantic. Dynamic. Jaw-droppingly good" is how the Minneapolis Star-Tribune described Herrera's musicianship and creativity, a talent which, according to jazz critic and Playboy Guide To Jazz author Neil Tesser, "...vaults him into the upper echelon - a trinity comprising Chucho Valdes, Gonzalo Rubalcaba and now Nachito Herrera". Following a Winter 2009 tour as a member of The Afro Cuban All Stars, Nachito now embarks on extensive touring on his own or with the accompaniment of musicians of his choosing.


PRESS REVIEWS

"It was the pianist's night on Wednesday at S.O.B.'s. Nachito Herrera, working with the group Cubanismo, was having a good time. On a cha-cha-cha he tore up the music, dropping a series of quotes -- melodies from other cha-cha-chas -- into his solo; the chorus picked up one and sang it. He worked over the dissonance of a whole tone scale, and flatted the fifth degree of a chord, ending a phrase on its bitterness. Left and right hands sprayed contrasting rhythms, and the intensity of the band soared in reaction." - Peter Watrous, New York Times
"Hotter than the burning tip of a contraband Cuban cigar. Stronger than a straight shot of Havana rum. As exciting as a World Series game, with 'El Duque' on the mound. Explosive. Crowd pleasing. Rhythmically intense. Romantic. Dynamic. Jaw-droppingly good." - Tom Surrowicz, Minneapolis Star-Tribune
"Herrera's powerful leadership keeps the audience's attention during the fury of pounding montunos and cascading lines." - Live At The Dakota II Music - Jazz Times

"With unbridled freedom, he jams with potent montunos and high-energy timba to solos that can melt snow off the sidewalk." - Jesse Varela, Latin Beat Magazine
Nachito Herrera was a child prodigy who studied in Havana with masters such as pianist and composer Rubén González from the Buena Vista Social Club. Herrera joined the high-energy group Cubanismo! in the 1990s. In 2002, Herrera landed like a flare in Minnesota, and is now an Upper Midwest treasure. After he plays "Claudia" by the greatest living Cuban pianist, Chucho Valdés, Nachito says, "We're gonna send this copy to his house, he's going to be so happy to hear a Cuban playing his music in Kalamazoo!" - NPR
Ignacio "Nachito" Herrera steps onto the national stage as a fully evolved artist, brimming with confidence, in total command of a vast array of traditional and contemporary Cuban idioms, and imparting a virtuosic touch on all aspects of this shimmering production. Herrera's inventive arrangements and the expertise of his musicians produce a program that exudes an organic quality from start to finish. - All About Jazz

 

 

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PERFORMANCES


2003:
Jazz Festival Tours - Minnesota, South Dakota, Chicago, New York,
California, Europe, Asia, and many others.
Certificate of appreciation for the contribution to the Mexico, Central
America, and South America Cultural Awareness.


2004:
Saint Lucia Festival (5th most important jazz festival in the world.)
Orchestra Hall Concert with the Minnesota Orchestra.


2005:
Benefit Concert for Mounds Park Academy.
Hot Summer Jazz Festival.
Blue Note: Fundraiser in Missouri.
Duo with Chick Corea at Orchestra Hall.
Gilmore Jazz Festival.
Concert at Orchestra Hall with the Minnesota Orchestra and Doc
Severinsen.


2006:

Concert with the Minnesota Orchestra.
Gilmore Jazz Festival.
Hot Summer Jazz Festival.
Master Class at the University of St. Thomas.
Mounds Park Academy Orchestra Performance.
University of Ohio Concert.
R.N.C Fundraiser Concert.
McKnight Foundation Concert.
Minneapolis Foundation Concert.
West Side Concert in St. Paul.
Chicago Jazz Festival.


2007:
Concert at Orchestra Hall.
Minnesota Youth Symphony Concert.
Eden Prairie Fundraiser.
St. Olaf Fundraiser.
International Keyboard Festival.



RESUME:

American Heritage Award Recipient
Phd. in Music
Master in Piano and Composition.
Composer and Orchestra Director.
Minnesota Music Awards winner - 3 years
Classically Trained at the Institute of Art in Havana, Cuba
Classical music studies - Polish and Russian technique
Master in Afro-Cuban music, Popular, and Latin Jazz.
Teacher of piano and technique - MacPhail Center for Music
Master Classes at various universities and colleges
Emmy Nominee - Guest Artist - Minnesota Original - Twin Cities
Public Television (Weekly Art Series - Legacy Celebration)
City Pages Article - One of the most important Jazz musicians in the Twin
Cities
Recognition - Latin Beat.
Recognition - Jazz Times.
Several tunes used in Hollywood movies.
More than 40 CD’s made as pianist, composer, and producer.

Currently, director of my own band, which carries a mixture of styles.
Besides learning and mastering the piano, studies have included trumpet, bass, and drums. Producing CDs and arranging all music including all original compositions. It should be noted that several of my students have received full scholarships to music colleges.


 

 

 

Awards

City Pages
Emy
Grammys
Minnesota Music Awards 4 years
AILA Minnesota / Dakotas Chapter