Video: Navidad Latina! – Project STEP Students, 2022 (8:44)
Happy Holidays – A group of Project STEP parents commissioned composer and multi-instrumentalist Gonzalo Grau (originally from Venezuela) to write an orchestral arrangement of Latin American holiday songs for Project STEP students. Gonzalo wrote a beautiful (and challenging!) arrangement titled Navidad Latina! of five songs that are well known all over Latin America, the broader Spanish-speaking world, and beyond. The five songs in the medley are Noche de Paz (Silent Night), El Jolgorio, El Burrito Sabanero, Niño Lindo – a traditional aguinaldo, and El Año Viejo. Conducted by Jorge Soto (also originally from Venezuela).
Violin One: Alexander Hernández-Williams, Sokki Laurent, Ángel Hernández
Violin Two: Miguel Cano, Kenry Mejía, Criswhalis Nuñez,
Violin Three: Mariesther Álvarez (Boston String Academy)
Cello: Sofia Hernández-Williams, Ana Gabriela Huertas, Suubi Laurent, Camron Miller, Aarón Soto, Gio Vazquez, Caroline Reiner-Williams
Bass: Madalena Kozol, Julian Roberson
Special thanks to Project STEP parents and family members: Julee Chan, Ángel Hernández, Caroline Reiner-Williams, Chaletta Huertas, Juan Carlo Huertas, Kenny Kozol, Sandra Kozol, Pascal Laurent, Jenelle Lawson, Luís Nuñez, Santa Nuñez, Kerby Roberson, Felicia Pagán-Soto, Lucy Pereyra, David Soto, Paola Tobon, Amanda Ward, and Deborah Ward.
Additional thanks to: All the wonderful Project STEP teachers, directors and board members! The Joy of Music Program, Worcester, MA; Jorge Soto, Conductor; Gonzalo Grau, Arranger; and Mariesther Álvarez, Violin, Boston String Academy
Original arrangement written for the students of Project STEP Recorded live in the Joseph & Jordan Shapiro Concert Hall at The Joy of Music Program, Nov. 26, 2022. Video and audio recording and editing by Jamie Stewardson.