Wednesday | October 4, 2023 | 12:30pm
Alejandro Brittes Quartet
Alejandro Brittes is a champion of Chamamé music. The roots of this unique folkloric music can be found centuries ago in the Northeastern region of Argentina. It was there that the region’s inhabitants and their music were influenced by European immigrants from Germany, Russia, Poland, Ukraine, and elsewhere. These settlers brought with them an instrument which would prove to be the hallmark of Chamamé—the accordion. This instrument proved to be indispensable in shaping and progressing the style.
The Alejandro Brittes Quartet innovatively explores this traditional, cross-border musical genre. The Quartet is based in Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul in southern Brazil and includes Alejandro Brittes (accordion) from Argentina, as well as Charlise Bandeira (flute), André Ely (seven-stringed guitar), and Carlos de Césaro (contrabass), all three from Brazil.
Brittes’ musical career spans over thirty years. He has published over 100 original compositions, made nine albums, and has performed widely in the Americas and Europe.
Alejandro Brittes – accordion
Charlise Bandeira – flute
André Ely – seven-stringed guitar
Carlos de Césaro – contrabass
Wednesday | November 15, 2023 | 12:30pm
Dorado Schmitt and Sons, Samson and Amati—
Django Festival All-Stars
The New York Times says about Dorado Schmitt that he was “…clearly born to the style.”
No one has done more to ignite interest in Gypsy and Hot Jazz more than the dazzling French guitarist and violinist Dorado Schmitt. Born to Roma parents in France, near the German border in Lorraine, Schmitt was weaned on traditional Romani music and Gypsy jazz and, as a young man, became a leading figure on the international jazz manouche scene.
Among his compositions are Bossa Dorado and Natacha — both of which have become standards of the Jazz Manouche repertoire. Schmitt won his first Django Award at the Django Reinhardt Festival in Luttre-Liberchies, France, and many awards followed. He continues to represent the art form at its highest level.
For this very special concert, he will be joined by his sons, Samson and Amati, creating a veritable guitar dynasty on stage. They will be accompanied by the brilliant rhythm guitarist Francko Mehrstein and noted Italian bassist, Gino Roman.
The group’s music transports listeners to Paris in the 1930's, when hot jazz filled the air and Django was king. They bring his music into the 21st century, honoring traditions and standards while adding their own interpretations, arrangements, and original compositions.
"Imagine a stage filled with five contemporary Django Reinhardt descendants.” —Wall Street Journal
Dorado Schmitt – violin, guitar
Samson Schmitt – guitar
Amati Schmitt – guitar
Francko Mehrstein – rhythm guitar
Gino Roman – bass
Wednesday | December 6, 2023 | 12:30pm
Backtrack Vocals is an award-winning 5-person a cappella quintet renowned for their stellar vocal and beatboxing abilities. Their exciting arrangements transform familiar tunes and showcase the top-notch talents of the artists. They infuse heart and humor into every performance and their versatile repertoire, which covers Top 40, Motown, Classical, Broadway, original music, and more, ensures that there is something for everyone. This concert will highlight many well-known songs of the season.
Backtrack got its start on YouTube a decade ago, where the group has a following of over 100,000 subscribers and 12 million views across its channel. Backtrack has appeared on NBC, FOX, PBS, Steve Harvey's daytime show, STEVE, Broadway's Kinky Boots, and HBO's PAUSE with Sam Jay. Winner of New York's Got Talent Season 6 in 2019, the quintet made its movie debut in A Ring for Christmas in December 2020. Backtrack took to the international festival stage when the group performed as a headliner at Bridgefest in Da Nang, Vietnam in August of 2022. Backtrack made its European TV debut in June of 2023.