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Afro-Latin Ensemble

Daniel Piper, director

The Afro-Latin Ensemble was founded upon the study of traditional and popular music formed at the crossroads of African and Iberian civilizations. We take as our focal point the percussion-centered traditions of Cuba, Puerto Rico and Brazil such as rumba, bomba, afoxé, and songs of the African orixás. Students strengthen skills of rhythmical independence and active listening through ensemble coordination of multiple interlocking parts. From there, repertoire varies as appropriate to the instrumental expertise and interest of the members, with possibilities including salsa, Latin-jazz, and samba. Students with prior experience in Latin or African music, or strong rhythmical skills are preferred. Instruments aside from percussion may include piano, guitar, bass, brass, flute and voice. Videos, listening, and occasional workshops with guest artists are incorporated to connect students with the work and culture of expert practitioners.

Daniel Piper is a professional jazz musician and multi-instrumentalist, currently working on his doctorate in ethnomusicology at Brown, with a specialism in Brazilian music.