Bronx Based Jazz Ensemble BronX BandA To Headline 2021 South Bronx Culture Trail Festival

Published on May 15, 2021, 3:56 am
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On Saturday, June 05, 2021, at 05:00 p.m., Latin jazz ensemble BronX BandA and Musicians from the New York Philharmonic will headline this year’s South Bronx Culture Trail Festival. In a joint performance, the musical groups will present original compositions at the historic Playground 52 in the Longwood neighborhood of the Bronx.

Now in its 10th year, the South Bronx Culture Trail Festival will once again unite the community in a celebration that amplifies local artists and musicians while celebrating the culture, history and communities of the Bronx. This year’s theme, Together Again, is a message of hope and positivity alluding to the many months of distance the community has endured. The headlining act will include a 60-minute Latin jazz set from BronX BandA, followed by a 15-minute performance of Gabriela Lena Frank’s Leyendas: An Andean Walkabout by Musicians from the New York Philharmonic, and a collective 30-minute performance from both groups to close out the concert.

Reflecting on this year’s festival, BronX BandA pianist and bandleader, Arturo O’Farrill says “What makes the South Bronx the mecca for innovation and exploration is the power of new friendships and collaborations. Casita Maria, BronX BandA, and the New York Philharmonic celebrating the South Bronx Culture Trail is the embodiment of Together Again as old friends and new friends celebrate the power of culture!”

Formed by Casita Maria in February 2020 through funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, BronX BandA transforms oral histories collected during the pandemic from Bronx legends into original jazz compositions telling a musical story of the Bronx and its residents. In the final 30 minutes of the event, the distinctive musical styles will converge during the performance of three original BronX BandA compositions, Parima, Nuyoriptian 3 and Ain’t I a Woman, arranged for Musicians from the New York Philharmonic by Mr. O’Farrill. Conducted by Tito Muñoz, Musicians from the New York Philharmonic include the following instrumentation: nine violins, three violas, two cellos, and one bass.

New York Philharmonic Director of Education and Community Engagement, Gary Padmore says “Very quickly, Casita Maria has become like family to the New York Philharmonic. Our partnership means more than just a day or event, and we’re honored to continue this new tradition in celebration of togetherness as part of the Bronx Culture Trail.”

The free public concert continues a partnership between the two organizations that includes New York Phil Bandwagon pop-up performances, where Casita Maria served as Bronx Advisor, and the New York Philharmonic’s Very Young Composers program at Casita Maria’s after school program. Additional partners include New York City Parks and 52 People for Progress.

To maintain CoViD-19 protocols, an advanced registration link will be shared one week prior to the event on the Casita Maria website, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Masks and social distancing are required. Advanced registration requested.

The instrumentation of the BronX BandA ensemble is as follows:

  • Arturo O’Farrill: keyboard;
  • Annette A. Aguilar: percussion;
  • Kayla Faccilongo: mezzo-soprano vocals;
  • Leonor Falcón: violin;
  • Clark Gayton: trombone
  • Baba Israel: rap / beatboxing / spoken word;
  • Juan Carlos Polo: drums;
  • Leo Traversa: electric bass;
  • Juanma Trujillo: electric guitar.


Attendees entrance across from 950 Avenue St. John’s, Bronx, NY.

Live broadcast:

BronxNet channel 67 Optimum / 2133 FiOs in the Bronx & worldwide + Facebook Live.

Rain location: 

Casita Maria Center for Arts and Education, 928 Simpson Street, Bronx, NY 10459. All attendees will be required to have their temperature taken, wear a mask, social distance and sign a track and trace form to enter.


Casita Maria

About Casita Maria Center For Arts & Education

Casita Maria Center For Arts & Education is the first and oldest Latino 501(c)(3) charity in NYC, founded in 1934.

The South Bronx-based community arts and educational organization presents diverse, contemporary visual and performing arts and education programming for all ages.

Casita Maria creates a safe and welcoming community, enriching and uplifting youth and families towards success, through shared cultural, art and educational experiences and programs.


Casita Maria Center For Arts & Education
928 Simpson Street
Bronx, NY 10459

Tel.: 718-589-2230


Jonas Bronck is the pseudonym under which we publish and manage the content and operations of The Bronx Daily.™ | - the largest daily news publication in the borough of "the" Bronx with over 1.5 million annual readers. Publishing under the alias Jonas Bronck is our humble way of paying tribute to the person, whose name lives on in the name of our beloved borough.