Venezuelan artist Gonzalo Grau & the Plural Combo brought verve and Afro-Cuban rhythms to the 2015 Academic Conference opening concert and reception in the Hogan Campus Center Ballroom. Equally well-known in the world of Latin jazz with his Grammy-nominated band La Clave Secreta and classical circles for his collaborations with Osvaldo Golijov, Venezuelan multi-instrumentalist Gonzalo Grau and his Plural Combo bring their own twist to Afro-Cuban classics à la Buena Vista Social Club and Fania All-Stars.
A special appearance by Worcester’s own Manolo Mairena, took the audience through soulful boleros to the high-octane rhythms of salsa and timba.
Faculty, staff and students took to the floor to dance, heeding Grau’s advice that “we play better when you dance!” The event was co-sponsored by Academic Conference and Arts Transcending Borders.
Photography by Dan Vaillancourt