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'Band Together: Satchmo's Story' presented in New Orleans

Photo by Ana Gershanik

A concert, "Band Together: Satchmo's Story," was presented April 29 by the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Raul Gomez and with a special performance by trumpeter Kermit Ruffins and a narration by actor James Bartelle at the Mahalia Jackson Theater in New Orleans.

The concert is part of a new LPO series focusing on New Orleans landmarks and historical figures to deepen high school students" understanding of the city's cultural history. Bands from seven local public schools participated in this concert, and the students had an opportunity to play side by side with the LPO's musicians for the grand finale of the program.

Costa Rican born Gomez, who often plays the violin with the LPO, is a rising and busy young conductor. Since receiving a conducting fellowship at the Aspen Music Festival in 2011 and completing studies at LSU in 2012, he has been in high demand by orchestras around the world. Recent highlights include multiple appearances with the LPO and the Acadiana Symphony Orchestra, as well as engagements in Mexico, Brazil and his native Costa Rica. He also has an active schedule as a violinist, violist and composer. Currently, Gomez holds positions as Music Director of Compleat Stage, Artistic Producer for YOA Orchestra of the Americas, Head of Programs for the Premier Orchestral Institute, and Artistic Director and Conductor of the Mississippi Youth Symphony Orchestra. Also active as a public speaker, his TED talk "El Concierto Inolvidable" was an audience favorite in TEDxPuraVida 2014.

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