Diego Rivera’s Exhilarating “Ofrenda” Bridges Jazz And Cultural Tradition

Rivera’s Historic Performance at the Art of Jazz Series

Diego Rivera’s “Ofrenda” concert at the Art of Jazz Series on Sunday, February 10, was nothing short of breathtaking. It was a historic performance, as it was the world premiere of the jazz suite, which left an indelible mark on the audience.

Rivera’s masterful suite of compositions, aptly titled “Ofrenda,” touched the heart of jazz while paying homage to his Mexican heritage. From the moment Rivera took the stage, his passionate saxophone playing captured the attention of everyone in the room.

The “Ofrenda” performance was a seamless blend of traditional jazz elements and Rivera’s unique cultural influences. His compositions were rich and evocative, taking listeners on an extraordinary musical journey. Rivera’s ensemble, featuring an all-star ensemble from the Posi-Tone label with Art Hirahara on piano, Boris Kozlove on bass, Rudy Royston on drums, and Etienne Charles on trumpet, provided the perfect accompaniment, their chemistry evident in every note.

One of the highlights of the afternoon was Rivera’s ability to infuse emotion into his music. Telling stories of the traditional meaning behind each song. Each piece felt like a heartfelt tribute to lost loved ones and to the spirit of ancestral families, resonating with the audience on a profound level. The concert was a testament to Rivera’s artistry and his ability to create music that speaks to the soul.

Overall, Diego Rivera’s “Ofrenda” concert was a triumph. It was a privilege that Rivera chose the Art of Jazz Series and Buffalo for his world premiere of “Ofrenda.” This was an experience many in the audience will not soon forget.

(Many thanks to Mark Percy for masterful technical sound, Devin Kelly for drum tech support, Ed Croft for bass support, Stephanie Keating for AKG support, Cindy Zambito for merch sales support, and Madeline LoFaso for hospitality support. And many thanks to Ricardo Saeb for our first “Community Showcase” segment and his performance of two Mexican classical/folkloric songs.)

JazzBuffalo contributor Jack Zuff captures the beauty of the room, the audience, and the performance in his captivating photo gallery:

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