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Latin Jazz All Stars [Jazz Series]

Featuring Steve Turre, Nestor Torres, Elio Villafranca, Chembo Corniel, Richardo Rodriguez, and Diego Lopez. 

OA logo8:00 PM—The Oxford American magazine is excited to welcome the Latin Jazz All Stars to Little Rock! This is the second show in their 2017-18 Jazz Series. Doors open at 6:00 PM, with dinner and drinks available for purchase at that time. The series is made possible in part by presenting sponsor UCA College of Fine Arts & Communication.

UCA Fine Arts logoAdditional season partners include Acura, Chris Harkins of Raymond James, J. Mark & Christy Davis, Stella Boyle Smith Trust, Downtown Little Rock Partnership, Stacy Hamilton of Pulaski Heights Realty, Ben E. Keith Foods Mid-South Division, Arkansas Arts Council, ACANSA Arts Festival, Capital Hotel, Rosen Music Company, and Piano Kraft.

Tickets are available via (or by calling 800-293-5949), and are $30 (General Admission), $44 (Reserved), and $46 (Premium Reserved). Please take a look at this very important ticketing and seating information before purchasing your tickets (view reserved seating chart). Full season ticket pricing and options are also available in a consolidated format, here.

M.F. Production’s Latin Jazz All Stars are a phenomenal ensemble that features the current masters of Afro Cuban, salsa, Brazilian, and Latin jazz. Steve Turre, Chembo Corniel, Nestor Torres, Elio Villa Franca, Richardo Rodriguez, and Diego Lopez take the stage as one unit to render an evening of brilliant music! The ensemble has performed to sold out crowds and packed houses all over the country. This “super band” features no leader; the participants share the spotlight and showcase each other.

Trombonist and SNL band veteran, Steve Turre has consistently won both the Readers’ and Critics’ polls in JazzTimes, Downbeat, and Jazziz for Best Trombone and for Best Miscellaneous Instrumentalist (shells). Turre’s sound has drawn upon jazz, Afro-Cuban, and Brazilian sources. His recordings are always innovative and have featured Cassandra Wilson, Randy Brecker, Graciela, Mongo Santamaria, J.J. Johnson, Herbie Hancock, Jon Faddis, and Pharoah Sanders. Turre has a strong command of all musical genres—he always keeps one foot in the past and one in the future.

Néstor Torres has recorded thirteen CDs to date. His fifth and seventh records, Treasure of the Heart and My Latin Soul, were nominated for a Latin GRAMMY, and his production This Side Of Paradise won the Latin GRAMMY Award in the Pop instrumental category in September 2001.

Elio Villafranca is at the forefront of the latest generation of remarkable Cuban pianists, composers, and bandleaders that for several years has been making major creative contributions to the international development of modern jazz. In the 2010 GRAMMY Awards he was nominated in Best Latin Jazz Album of the Year, for his performance, composition, and co-production of Chembo Corniel’s album, Things I Wanted To Do.  Elio is now an official Steinway Artist.

Conga-player, Chembo Corniel divides his performance time between his two musical loves: Latin jazz and “old-fashioned salsa that swings.” He made waves this year and garnered a GRAMMY nomination for Best Latin Jazz Album for Things I Wanted To Do.

Ricardo Rodriguez is a bassist’s bassist! He resides in New York City where he has become one of the premier bassist for Latin, Afro Cuban, and world music. He has worked with the legendary Candido, Chubby Checker, Wanda Sykes, multi-Emmy Award-winning Disney Music Producer Martin Erskine, and Primo Casper Gomez of Sootyz Groove, among many others. Diego Lopez began playing drums at age eleven. By age fifteen, he was working professionally. In 2000, he established himself on New York’s music scene. He has worked and toured with many artists including Hilton Ruiz, Paquito D’ Rivera, Giovanni Hidalgo, and Gato Barbieri.

Combined, these talented musicians have played with an enormous range of greats, including Dizzy Gillespie, Celia Cruz, Tito Puente, Candido, Art Blakey, Grover Washington, Max Roach, Paquito D’Rivera, Paul Simon, and Dionne Warwick, just to name a few. M.F. Production’s Latin Jazz All Stars is a musical extravaganza that is sure to bring any audience to their feet!