Cuarteto Latinoamericano was formed in 1981 on the initiative of four outstanding Latin American musicians: brothers Saul Bitran, violinist; Aron Bitran, violinist; Alvaro Bitran, cellist; and Javier Montiel, violist. Since then, the ensemble has performed extensively in Mexico, Eastern and Western Europe, Scandinavia, South America and the United States. The quartet has special interest in the works by Latin America composer of all periods, and has premiered many string quartets written specifically for them. Reviews of their performances of the traditional, contemporary, and Latin American repertoires have praised the quartet's technical command, warmth, musicality, versatility, and enthusiasm. It is this ability to render with equal success new compositions and traditional masterpieces of the string quartet repertoire that makes the Cuarteto Latinoamericano unique. The members of the quartet are Artists-in-Residence at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA.
"...an intelligently selected program of Latin American string quartets...the Cuarteto Latinoamericano is unquestionably the best-sounding quartet ensemble I have ever heard coming from this part of the world. It has a clean, tight ensemble, startling luxuriance of tone, and the delightful collective habit of playing cleaning on pitch...strongly recommended" -- John Wiser --Fanfare
The brilliant Bulgarian mezzo-soprano, Burjana Antonova-Tabakova, launched her career in 1982 with operatic performances in Austria, Germany, Poland, and Bulgaria. She has received many laudatory reviews in roles such as Amneris in Aida, Azucena in Il Trovatore , Cherubino in La Nozze di Figaro , and Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia . Recently she has toured in Europe and Great Britain as soloist with the Sofia Philharmonic. An extremely versatile artist, her vast repertoire includes songs of Schubert, Schumann, Liszt, Mahler, Wagner, and Rachmaninov.
Emil Tabakov is a graduate of the Bulgarian State College of Music where he earned degrees in conducting, composition, and contrabass. In 1977, Mr. Tabakov was awarded the laureate title at the Nikolai Malko International Competition for Young Conductors in Copenhagen and is currently chief conductor of the Sofia Philharmonic, the oldest and most prestigious orchestra in Bulgaria.
Maestro Tabakov made his professional conducting debut at age seventeen with the Rousse Symphony Orchestra and was subsequently appointed music director of that orchestra, a post he held from 1975 until 1979. In 1977, Maestro Tabakov founded the Chamber Orchestra of the Bulgarian State College of Music and continued to appear regularly with that ensemble. From 1979 to 1988, he was the artistic director and conductor of the Sofia Soloists Chamber Ensemble, presenting concerts throughout Bulgaria and on tour in Europe, Asia, Latin America, Australia and the United States.
With the Sofia Philharmonic, Tabakov has appeared in Great Britain, Germany, Yugoslavia and, in 1990, toured in the United States, Japan, Hong Kong, South America. He has numerous guest conducting appearances to his credit including concerts in Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Poland, Brazil, Romania, Greece and France.
Equally talented as a composer, Maestro Tabakov's works have been published and performed in Bulgaria and abroad. His orchestral arrangements of Respighi songs are featured on another ÉLAN CD (82280) with the gifted soprano Burjana Antonova and the Sofia Chamber Soloists.
The name of Bobby Jiménez is forever linked with the great traditions of classic popular Cuban songs. Throughout his long and successful career, Bobby has demonstrated his versatility and gift for communicating in English, French, Italian, and Portuguese, the most beautiful musical creations of these countries. However, it is his direct link to, and admiration for, the great composers of his native Cuba which have enabled him to interpret an extensive repertoire of Cuban music encompassing many styles and many decades.
Bobby attended the Conservatorio Municipal in his native Havana and studied vocal arts privately with Maria Fantolli, Edelmire de Zayas and Iris Burguet. Additionally, he was coached by several well-known artists, including Isolina Carrillo, composer of Dos Gardenias. He emigrated to the United States in 1985 and settled in Miami where he performed in the Cuban zarzuela Maria La O by Ernesto Lecuona under the direction of Marta Pérez in the Zarzuela Theater La Sociedad ProArte Grateli. He was also a well-known artist in local cabarets and appeared frequently on Spanish television programs. He moved to Washington, D.C. In 1989 and has given numerous concerts in the area including concerts at the State Department, and as a featured artist during the celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month.
Born in Havana, Cuba, Bibiana Borroto began guitar lessons at the age of eight. Her father's support was instrumental to her acceptance at Havana's Municipal Music Conservatory Alejandro Garcia Caturla. She continued her music studies at Havana's national School of Music, participating in guitar and chorus competitions and concerts. Under the tutelage of maestro Victor Pellegrini, she graduated with Music and Classical Guitar degrees from Havana's Superior Institute of Art. On numerous occasions she has performed in international guitar festivals. She has participated in master classes with maestros Ichiro Suzuki, Costas Cotsiolis, Leo Brower and Rey Guerra among others. She has appeared in concert as a duo with classical guitarist Luis Manuel Molina. Ms. Borroto emigrated to the United States in 1988, settling in Miami where she also received master classes from virtuoso guitarist Manuel Barreuco at Florida International University. Together with Bobby Jiménez, she has appeared as a guest artist at the State department and also as a featured artist during the celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month.