Triangle Arts and Entertainment – News and Reviews Theatre Dance Music Arts

Harold López-Nussa Trio with Ruy López-Nussa and Gaston Joya

Event Details

Stewart Theatre, Talley Student Union


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  • $26-$31  |  NC State students $6.50

Pre-show Talk

Want to know what goes on in the mind of a rising jazz composer? Arrive early for a pre-show talk with Harold López-Nussa. Talk begins at 7pm in Talley Student Union, Room 3222.

About the Performance

“López-Nussa’s single-note grace is akin to Herbie Hancock’s, and his two-fisted attacks are as joyous as Chick Corea’s” – Downbeat Magazine (4-star review)

“El Viaje (The Journey),” the title track of Cuban pianist and composer, Harold López-Nussa’s latest record seems to sway gently like a boat in the water – as if readying for a voyage or returning to port after arrival. This scene aptly describes López-Nussa’s experiences of traveling throughout the world, yet always finding his way back home. This journey of body and spirit has led simultaneously to a musical exploration where he visits various genres and ideas while staying true to his foundational roots.

López-Nussa was born into a musical family in Havana on July 13, 1983. Not only are his father and uncle working musicians, but his late mother was a highly regarded piano teacher. At the age of eight, López-Nussa began studying at the Manuel Saumell Elementary School of Music, then the Amadeo Roldán Conservatory and finally graduating with a degree in classical piano from the Instituto Superior de Artes (ISA). “I studied classical music and that’s all I did until I was 18,” he says. Then came jazz.

López-Nussa is a highly sought-after composer and pianist, marrying classical piano chops with his jazz roots. Collaboration with veterans from the Buena Vista Social Club to singer Omara Portuondo, have helped shape his musical style – muscular, elegant, familiar and fresh, rooted in Cuban tradition yet permeated by sounds from other parts of the world.  Soon after López-Nussa’s “El Viaje” was released, it reached Number 1 on iTunes’ Jazz Chart.

The newest member of The Harold Lopéz-Nussa Trio is Gaston Joya, considered one of Cuba’s brightest musical stars. The celebrated musician has been the bassist for legendary pianist Chucho Valdés in the recent revival of the seminal Latin jazz band Irakere, and he has toured with Omara Portuondo (Buena Vista Social Club’s vocalist) and Cuban drum legend Enrique Plá in the Ernán López-Nussa’s Trio. Gaston has been featured with the Latin American Symphonic Orchestra under the direction of legendary conductor Claudio Abbado and recently, Gaston’s self titled debut recording received the award for the Best Debut Album at the 18th Edition of Cuba’s Cubadisco music festival.