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Canyon Explorer Series: Classical

Canyon Explorer Series debuts Classical Music Category

August 19 (Tuesday) will see two new classical releases from Canyon: Portraits, Music for Classical Guitar by Gabriel Ayala and Guadalupe, Our Lady of the Roses, a music drama featuring R. Carlos Nakai on Native American flute and Xavier Quijas Yxayotl on Aztec percussion and flutes.

Gabriel Ayala (Yaqui) is at the very forefront of Native American artists who are making a name for themselves as classical musicians. Gabe has performed at the Kennedy Center, Smithsonian, National Museum of the American Indian and numerous concert venues. He earned a Masters Degree in Music Performance from the University of Arizona and is known for his mixture of technical precision and emotion. Portraits features guitar versions of well-known classical pieces that everyone enjoys including Bach’s mighty “Toccata & Fugue in D-minor” (you’ll recognize it as the organ theme from the old Phantom of the Opera movie) and Albeniz’s “Leyenda.” Portraits represents a new world of expression for Native American music. Look for Gabe’s podcast in September.

R. Carlos Nakai has been performing with symphonies for over twenty years and recently completed a performance of “Two World Concerto” (composed by James DeMars) with the Buffalo Philharmonic that received three standing ovations. In November, he’s scheduled to appear with one of the great symphonies of the world, the Philadelphia Orchestra.

Nakai was joined by Xavier Quijas Yxayotl as a major soloist in the world premiere recording of Guadalupe, Our Lady of the Roses. Guadalupe is a music drama (or opera) based on the story of the appearance of the Virgin Mary to Mexican native Juan Diego in 1531. James DeMars composed this brilliantly colorful music drama to showcase the vocal talents of Isola Jones (Metropolitan Opera star), Robert Breault (one of the great American tenors), and Carole FitzPatrick and Robert Barefield (both of whom have sung roles around the world). DeMars created special music for Nakai and Xavier that adds an infusion of Native American flavor to this modern masterpiece.



If you like the creativity, richness and depth of classical music, also look for these other Canyon Explorer: Classical recordings:





Canyon Records Explores New Musical Frontiers

Kara Briggs interview with R. Carlos Nakai for NMAI Classical Native programming

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