Luciana Souza & Guillermo Klein

MIT Wind and Jazz Ensembles, Frederick Harris, director

April 28, 2017 - 8:00pm
Free in advance for MIT students, $5 for MIT faculty, staff, and community members, $10 general admission
Reserve a Seat


Two of South America’s greatest jazz artists, Luciana Souza and Guillermo Klein, join the MIT Wind Ensemble, MIT Festival Jazz Ensemble and MIT Vocal Jazz Ensemble in creating innovative new compositions and arrangements.  The 8pm concert program will feature a new work for Luciana Souza and the MIT Wind Ensemble, composed by Guillermo Klein based on the poetry of Juan Sasturain and Edgar Bayley. Chamber music for percussion and saxophones as well as full wind ensemble works will also be performed.

The evening’s highlight will be the world premiere of Works on Hope by Klein for Souza and the MIT Wind Ensemble, under the direction of Fred Harris.  This performance is the culmination of Klein’s and Souza’s MIT residency and a semester-long exploration of their music by three MIT student ensembles. The MIT Vocal Jazz Ensemble will sing two of Souza’s original compositions and the MIT Festival Jazz Ensemble will premiere an arrangement of Souza’s At The Fair, from her latest recording, Speaking in Tongues. A special arrangement by Klein of Hermeto Pascoal’s Hermanos Latinos closes the concert.

7:30-8pm pre-concert ArtWeek talk
Vocal Jazz Ensemble director Liz Tobias and selected MIT students will discuss collaborating with Souza and Klein, the rationale behind the project, and the challenges and rewards of developing new works remotely and onsite with guest artists.

About the Artists
Brazilian-born vocalist and Grammy winner Luciana Souza is a major figure in the worlds of vocal jazz and Latin music. She has recorded with Klein, Herbie Hancock, Paul Simon and James Taylor, among others. Argentinian composer-pianist Guillermo Klein is celebrated across the globe for his compositions and recordings with his ensemble Los Guachos. His work has been highly praised in The New York Times, DownBeat and Jazziz. He serves on the faculty of the Sibelius Academy and the Jazz Schule Basel.

Grammy Award winner Luciana Souza is one of Jazz’s leading singers and interpreters. Born in São Paulo, Brazil, Souza’s work transcends traditional boundaries around musical styles. Entertainment Weekly writes, “Her voice traces a landscape of emotion that knows no boundaries.” Souza has been releasing acclaimed recordings since 2002—including her six Grammy-nominated records, Brazilian Duos, North and South, Duos II, Tide, Duos III, and The Book of Chet. Her latest offering, Speaking in Tongues, is a brilliant collaboration with Lionel Loueke, Gregoire Maret, Massimo Biolcati and Kendrick Scott. Souza has been a prominent soloist in important works by composers Osvaldo Golijov, Derek Bermel and Patrick Zimmeri, performing with the New York Philharmonic, the Atlanta Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and the American Composers Orchestra.

She began her recording career at age three with a radio commercial. She spent four years on faculty at Berklee College of Music, where she received a Bachelor’s in Jazz Composition. Souza earned a Master’s degree in Jazz Studies from the New England Conservatory of Music and taught for four years at Manhattan School of Music. She has twice been named Best Female Jazz Singer by the Jazz Journalists Association, in 2005 and 2013.

A composer, arranger, pianist and occasional singer, Guillermo Klein began his craft in childhood in Argentina. When his father gave him a piano at age 11, he promptly began writing songs, inspired by the legendary Argentinean composer Astor Piazzolla. Klein attended Berklee College of Music, where his intention to study classical music gave way to his passion for jazz. His colleagues at Berklee—many of whom came from South America—provided the framework for what would eventually become Klein’s main musical voice, the Big Van large ensemble (later called Los Guachos). After graduating from Berklee, Klein moved to New York City and quickly became associated with Smalls, a jazz club where he established a weekly engagement with his 17-piece Big Van band. Smalls was critical in fostering young artists that would ultimately be some of the most influential voices of modern jazz.

Klein scaled the band down to a more streamlined 11-piece unit, known as Los Guachos (roughly translated, the bastards). The band developed in residencies at Smalls and, later, the Jazz Standard. Sunnyside Records soon released two CDs by Los Guachos: Los Guachos II (1999) and Los Guachos III (2002), and Klein is still with this label. Since moving back to Argentina in 2000 with his wife, Klein has recorded with local musicians and has released a series of critically-acclaimed CDs with Los Guachos including: Live in Barcelona (Sunnyside, 2005), Filtros (Sunnyside, 2008) and his latest, Carrera (Sunnyside, 2012). Other important recordings include his work as a composer and/or arranger on Solar Return Suite (with the MIT Wind Ensemble), Domador de Huellas (Sunnyside, 2010), Bienestan (Sunnyside 2011) with Aaron Goldberg and Miguel Zenon’s Grammy-nominated, Alma Aldentro.

Klein plays regularly with some of the most outstanding musicians in the jazz community, like Chris Cheek, Miguel Zenón, Bill McHenry, Jeff Ballard, Ben Monder, Aaron Goldberg, Carmen Canela or Jorge Rossy. In addition to teaching composition in Buenos Aires, Klein has given master classes and seminars throughout Europe, including the Jazz Institut Berlin, Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Jazz Schule Basel, and Le Mirail in Toulouse.