Daniel Rojas: new album + review

Daniel Rojas: new album + review
February 5, 2018 Jacqueline

Da Vinci Classics releases pianist and composer Dr Daniel Rojas’ long-awaited new album “Bliss of Heaven: Music of the New World” now available online and via the artist’s website.

Daniel Rojas, piano/composer
Baldini Quartet (Brazil)
Stephen Cuttriss, bandonéon

Irresistible rhythms and a melting pot of melodies, Chilean-born pianist and composer Daniel Rojas reimagines some of Latin America’s best-loved tunes and tangos in his new album for Da Vinci Classics, ‘BLISS OF HEAVEN: Music of the New World’.

A heavenly alchemy of mambo, salsa and Andean folk music fused with classical sensibilities – supported by the high-energy Ensemble Apex String Quartet featuring violinist Anna da Silva Chen – it’s music you know but as you’ve never heard it before.

With Piazzolla’s dramatic Libertango, Chucho Valdés’ danceable Mambo Influenciado and the surprising Peruvian title track traced back to the 1600s, Rojas’ long-awaited album of sensitive arrangements and soulful original works is guaranteed to lift your spirits, and leave you wanting more.

Dr Daniel Rojas is an award-winning composer specialising in the rich and vibrant Latin American aesthetic, and Australia’s best Latin and tango pianist, earning acclaim for stunning improvisations at the keyboard. Program director of Composition at Sydney University’s Conservatorium of Music, Rojas’ prizes include the Fellowship of Australian Composers Award, Frank Albert Prize, and Miriam Hyde Memorial Award; a warm and exuberant performer, he has played for Sydney Festival, Melbourne Recital Centre, Newcastle Music Festival, City Recital Hall and more.

While this album was recorded in São Paulo, Brazil (pre-COVID) with the Baldini Quartet led by OSESP Concertmaster Emmanuele Baldini, and bandoneonist Stephen Cuttriss, tonight, as for Sydney Festival, Rojas performs with a string quartet from Ensemble Apex – Sydney’s creative and charismatic collection of Conservatorium-trained young musicians led by Artistic Director/conductor, Sam Weller. Exclusive signed copies of the new album available on the night and media release here.

Read Limelight Magazine’s 5 star review of the launch concert in Sydney on Thurs 29 April, 2021 at 6pm, Camelot Lounge:

“Chilean-born Australian Daniel Rojas’ name is synonymous with brilliant Latin American pianism, grounded in the classical idiom. His aim he says, is to bring the “Latin American vernacular music into the classical concert hall.” He is achieving this with astonishing and popular success. In the high-octane performance that unfolds, Rojas and Ensemble Apex Strings stir the passions and seduce our souls. […]

“There is tremendous chemistry between Rojas and the Ensemble Apex Strings, cohesive and dynamic. Rojas is a charismatic performer whose music gives us a window into several worlds. His music speaks of myriad colours and tales from across Latin America; music of the old world is fused with the new; classical traditions are woven into indigenous Latin American aesthetics, paying homage to the great masters. Rojas spins his dazzling improvisations with ease, combining his music with entertaining insights and historical narratives. These earworms will take a while to dispel.” – Limelight Magazine, May 2021 (live review – 5 stars)