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Camerata de las Americas

Camerata de las Américas is a leading chamber ensemble devoted to discovery and performance of music written in the Americas. Under the Artistic Direction of Roberto Kolb, the group was formed in 1988 by a number of Mexico's best instrumental players, who were joined by some of the outstanding performers from throughout the hemisphere. Camerata de las Américas quickly became one of Mexico's best orchestras, and in 1993 it was awarded First Prize for Chamber Groups by the University of Mexico. This recognition allowed it to step up its activities in many Mexican festivals and on the international scene, leading to its receiving recording dates from Mexican companies and particularly with the high quality U.S. audiophile label Dorian Recordings. The instrumentation of the Camerata is solo winds, percussion, and a small string group. The members were Asako Arai, flute; Roberto Kolb, oboe; Eleanor Weingartner, clarinet; Gerardo Ledezma, bassoon; Tim McKeown and Neal Woolworth, trumpets; David Moonen, horn; Gustavo Rosales, trombone, Alfredo Brinas, and Ivan Manzanilla, percussion; Alberto Cruzprieto, piano; Viktoria Horti, Rafael Machado, Martha Olvera, and Silvia Santamaría, violins; Paul Abbot and Mikhail Zemtsov, violas; Juan Hermida, cello; and Victor Flores, basses. They receive grants repeatedly, allowing them to research the little-known repertory of music of the Americas, where they have discovered a surprisingly large among of music for such small chamber groups, much of which remained in unpublished manuscripts. Another branch of their research is discovering the relationship between the art music of the hemisphere and the multiplicity of indigenous and imported ethnic musical traditions and the religious music brought in by the Catholic Church after 1492. With the aid of the Mexican Fund for the Arts and Culture, the National Center for the Arts, the International Cervantino Festival, the U.S./Mexico Fund for the Arts, and other organizations, it has commissioned a large number of pieces by the leading contemporary composers of the hemisphere. Its initial releases on Dorian Records, featuring little-known music of Mexican composers Carlos Chávez and Silvestre Revueltas, were widely received with critical raves.
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