Music I Am #15 – Armando Bayolo, composer

The moment when you knew you wanted to be a musician:

Not long after starting music lessons at age 12. I sopped all the music I could up like a sponge.

An important skill for a career in music that does not have anything to do with an instrument or making music:

Friendliness. Being pleasant and friendly is incredibly helpful in finding people who want to work with you.

Two ways you stay motivated:

Finding great collaborators. Remembering how much I like having a roof over my head.

Latest Project:

Show Offs! A cycle of four concertos: 1 for harpsichord, 2 for sax quartet, 3 for piano, and 4 for viola.

What inspired it:

Looking at the 6 symphonies I’ve written which are conscious commentaries on an old form made me want to do it for another venerable tradition and try to deconstruct it.

Who’s on it:

Soloists: Michael Delfín, harpsichord; Zzyzx saxophone quartet; Erika Dohi, piano; Michael Hall, viola. Conductors: Chris Hisey, Thomas McCauley, ShawnCrowch Ensembles: Montclair State University Wind Symphony, American Chamber Orchestra, Society for New Music (Syracuse), Ensemble Ibis. (And others may join, especially on the harpsichord and viola pieces).

How do you discover new music?

Mostly through other people who share their stuff. And browsing the web and the occasional used record store.

One living and one dead musician that deserves more attention:

Living: Carlos Carrillo. A phenomenal composer who deserves to shine brightly.

Dead: Louise Farrenc. Her music is amazing.

Where can we find you online?

Website (best place to listen to my tunes)

Upcoming Event you’d like to share?

I have performances at University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign as part of the Festival of Puerto Rican Music, March 30- April 2, with Kristina Bachrach, Winston Choi, and The Victory Players; and a portrait show at Epiphany Center in Chicago with Kristina Bachrach and Winston Choi on April 2.

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