Aruán Ortiz (piano)
Named “one of the most creative and original composers in the world” (Lynn René Bayley,The Art Music Lounge), pianist, violist, and composer Aruán Ortiz – born in Santiago de Cuba, and resident of Brooklyn, NY – has been an active figure in the progressive jazz and avant-garde scene in the US for more than 15 years. He has written music for jazz ensembles, orchestras, dance companies, chamber groups, and feature films, incorporating influences from contemporary classical music, Cuban Haitian rhythms, and avant-garde improvisation. His unique musical vision has been covered in magazines and newspapers in Europe and the US including Jazz ‘n’ More (Swizerland), The Guardian (UK), Expresso (Portugal), The New York Times, DownBeat, JazzTimes, Jazziz, The Boston Globe,Chicago Jazz Magazine, San Diego Union Tribune, and All About Jazz (US),Jazzpodium (Germany), Musica Jazz, Il Muro Magazine, Il Corriere della Sera and Jazz Convention (Italy), The Ottawa Citizen (Canada),The Irish Times (Ireland), and Way Out West (Japan), among many others.
His recent albums have received five stars from prestigious jazz magazines around the world. Hidden Voices (Intakt 2016) was lauded as “a solid and unique new sound in today’s jazz world,” by Matthew Fiander in PopMatters, and his solo piano effort Cub(an)ism (2017) was called “a genius exercise in the exploration of depth and perception that reveals a bright new wrinkle in the relationship between music and mathematics, reimagining Afro-Haitian Gaga rhythms, Afro-Cuban rumba and Yambú into heavily improvised meditations on modernism that recall John Cage and Paul Bley,” (Ron Hart, The Observer). Aruán has played, toured, or recorded with jazz luminaries such as Wadada Leo Smith, Don Byron, Greg Osby, Wallace Roney, Nicole Mitchell, William Parker, Adam Rudolph, Andrew Cyrille, Henry Grimes, Oliver Lake, Rufus Reid, Terri Lyne Carrington, and collaborated with choreographer José Mateo; filmmaker Ben Chace; poet Abiodun Oyewole from The Last Poets; DJ Logic and Val Jeanty; and German writers Angelika Hentschel and Anna Breitenbach.
Brad Jones (bass)
Born in New York, bassist, composer, and educator Mr. Jones, has recorded, performed, and toured around the world with a diverse array of artists that include Ornette Coleman, Elvis Costello, Elvin Jones, David Byrne, Muhal Richard Abrams, Sheryl Crow, Deborah Harry, Dave Douglas, Vernon Reid, John Zorn, Don Byron, Marc Ribot, and The Jazz Passengers. Brad has released three recordings under his own leadership with two seperate projects:“UNCIVILIZED POISE” and “THE EMBODIMENT” with his band Aka Alias, and“POURING MY HEART IN” with the Brad Jones Quartet. Brad is also an experienced educator who has taught workshops and master classes in France, Italy, Canada, and Mexico and is part of the music faculty at Columbia University in New York City.
Gerald Cleaver (drums)
Born and raised in Detroit, has been known as a great musician and educator since the early ’90s. Cleaver became deeply involved with the jazz scene there, working with respected area musicians including bassist Ali Muhammad Jackson, trumpeter Marcus Belgrave, tenor saxophonist Donald Walden, bassist Rodney Whitaker, and many others. An NEA fellowship allowed Cleaver to study with drummer Victor Lewis; Cleaver then earned a music degree from the University of Michigan. Splitting time between Detroit and N.Y.C., where he subsequently moved, Cleaver has worked with a long list of great jazz leaders including Roscoe Mitchell, Henry Threadgill, Jacky Terrasson, Hank Jones, Tommy Flanagan, Charles Gayle, Reggie Workman, and Eddie Harris, among others. Cleaver can be heard in a number of groups, including the Joe Morris Quartet; the Matthew Shipp Quartet; Chris Lightcap’s, and vocalist René Marie’s Maxjazz release.
Cleaver has been active with such additional groups as the Roscoe Mitchell Trio; Bishop-Cleaver’s “Flood”; David Torn’s Prezens; Gerald Cleaver’s Veil of Names, which includes guitarist Ben Monder, violinist/violist Mat Maneri, bassist Reid Anderson, saxophonist Andrew Bishop, and old collaborator Craig Taborn, and Farmers by Nature, with William Parker and Craig Taborn, which CD was release by Aum Fidelity in 2009.