Gustavo Tavares, distinguished Brazilian cellist, reunites with the city of his musical forefathers for his 60th birthday celebration year, in a programme of his own music, music of his native country and other works for cello ensemble.
A winner of the prestigious “Brazilian International Press Award”, Gustavo Tavares has been described as “one of the most important Brazilian names in contemporary classical music” (Correio Braziliense).
He is Doctor of Musical Arts, and is acknowledged as a versatile musician, known not only as cellist but also as composer, arranger and educator. He has performed in many countries in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Americas, playing in some of the most famous prestigious festivals and concert venues in the world, such as the Kennedy Center in Washington, Carnegie Hall in New York, Ludwigsburger Schlossfestspiele and Rheingaufestspiele in Germany, the UNESCO hall in Paris, Sala Puccini in Milan, the Quirinale Palace in Rome, Miami Festival, Royal Academy of Music in London, the Nehru Park in New Dehli, Lisinski Hall of Zagreb, and Sala Bellas Artes in Puerto Rico. Programs for radio and television include concerts transmitted by the American National Public Radio in Washington DC, New York WQXR, Slovenia’s national Radio and TV (RTV), Croatia National Broadcast (HRT), ETV Sri Lanka, Norwegian NRK, and Italian RAI.
In 1995, he created the ensemble “Triangulo” together with Paquito d’Rivera and Pablo Zinger, which, according to the American critic C.Berg helped “redefine the basic assumptions of chamber music. ” The group recorded several CDs, one of them reaching finalist for the Grammy Award for “Best Crossover Record”, and yet another being listed as “Record of the Year” by the Brazilian newspaper “O Estado de São Paulo”.
Gustavo Tavares was a student of Antonio Janigro at the Musikhochschule in Stuttgart, Germany, where he graduated with highest honours in 1986, and later became Bernard Greenhouse`s teaching assistant, while working towards his doctorate at Rutgers University, USA. Also at Rutgers University, he was for several years “Artist in Residence” at the Center for Latino Arts and Culture.
His compositions and arrangements have been performed and recorded by artists like Yo-Yo Ma, the Cello Ensemble of Venice, the Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society, and the Sebastian Quartet, to name a few. He made several arrangements for the CDs “Riberas” by the Buenos Aires Quartet as well as for “Obrigado Brazil – Live” by Yo-Yo Ma, and both productions were awarded the Latin Grammy. His work “Egum” has been recently premiered at the “La Fenice” theatre in Venice, Italy. A string quintet with 2 cellos has also been newly performed for the first time at the Chamber Music Series of the Norwegian National Opera.
He collaborates often with musicians within a variety of musical genres, as well as with dancers, writers and visual artists, and he is author of the book “Brazilian music for cello and guitar: on the corner of the classical and the popular”, written in co-authorship with Brazilian jazz guitar player, Nelson Faria. He has served as jury member at prestigious contests such as the International Cello Competition Antonio Janigro, and the Rudolf Matz Competition. As a teacher, he has had contact with talented young musicians not only as guest professor in recognised conservatories and festivals but also through projects at less favoured areas in Africa, Asia and the Americas.
Among recent activities, a new solo CD soon to be released, and a project in collaboration with Brazil’s “Sustainable Amazonas Foundation” which has already lead to 2 tours along some of the rivers in the Amazonas Basin, performing for the local population at parks and reservations. This collaboration, which will also includes a documentary film, is also part of a broader project focused on sound in the natural tropical environment. Other current projects include commissions of new works for festivals both in Italy and Croatia.
Gustavo Tavares has been knighted by the Brazilian Government as “Officer of the Rio Branco Order” in recognition for his contribution to culture, both in Brazil and abroad.
This program is presented in collaboration with the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte, Brasil – UFRN.