The Legendary Assad Brothers Perform in the Series April 27th

The Legendary Assad Brothers Perform in the Series April 27th

William Jenks and Portland Classic Guitar are proud to present internationally renowned guitarists the Assad Brothers—Sérgio and Odair Assad—live in concert on Thursday, April 27, at the First Congregational Church in downtown Portland. The music will begin at 8 p.m. This concert will be preceded by a master class on Wednesday, April 26, at 7 p.m. in Marylhurst University’s Wiegand Hall.

Hailing from Brazil, the Assad Brothers’ rich artistic sensibility—what the New York Times has called their “supple, flawless unified sound”—can be partially traced to their musical family. Their father was mandolinist Jorge Assad, and their mother is singer Angelina Assad (their sister Badi, and their children Clarice, Rodrigo, and Carolina are also celebrated musicians). The brothers studied with the guitarist/lutenist Monina Távora, a disciple of Andrés Segovia, and their career began in earnest in 1979, with a major prize win at the Young Artists Competition in Bratislava. The Assads have since toured the world together, to great acclaim, recording important works for major labels like Nonesuch, and introducing compelling new music for the two-guitar format.

The brothers’ wide-ranging taste is reflected in their repertoire. Their virtuosity has inspired commissions from numerous prominent composers, including Astor Piazzolla, Terry Riley, Radamés Gnattali, Marlos Nobre, Nikita Koshkin, Roland Dyens, Jorge Morel, Edino Krieger, and Francisco Mignone. Brother Sérgio Assad is also a gifted composer, and many of his own original works—strongly influenced by folk and jazz, as well as Latin music of almost every style—have become audience favorites. A typical Assad performance might also include transcriptions of the great Baroque keyboard literature of Bach, Rameau, and Scarlatti, as well as adaptations of works by such diverse figures as Gershwin, Ginastera, and Debussy.

The Assads frequently work with other beloved artists, including Yo-Yo Ma (they appeared on his Grammy-winning 2009 release, Songs of Joy & Peace) and Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg (they appeared on her 2000 Nonesuch collection, based on Gypsy folk tunes)—not to mention their collaborations with such luminaries as Fernando Suarez Paz, Paquito D’Rivera, Gidon Kremer, and Dawn Upshaw. They recently toured a project entitled “De Volta as Raizes” (“Back to Our Roots”), featuring Lebanese-American singer Christiane Karam, percussionist Jamey Haddad, and composer/pianist Clarice Assad.

Come hear why the Washington Post calls the Assads “the best two-guitar team in existence, maybe even in history,” and lauds their playing as “daringly flexible” and “eerily unanimous.” This is a concert not to be missed!

The First Congregational Church is located at 1126 SW Park Ave, in downtown Portland. Marylhurst University is located at 17600 Pacific Highway, Marylhurst, OR (97036).