ARTURO O’FARRILL, pianist, composer, and educator, was born in Mexico and grew up in New York City. He received his formal musical education at the Manhattan School of Music and the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College. Arturo’s professional career began with the Carla Bley Band and continued as a solo performer with a wide spectrum of artists including Dizzy Gillespie, Lester Bowie, Wynton Marsalis, and Harry Belafonte.
In 2007, he founded the Afro Latin Jazz Alliance as a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the performance, education, and preservation of Afro Latin music. Learn more about ALJA here: http://www.afrolatinjazz.org.
An avid supporter of all the Arts, Arturo has performed with Ballet Hispanico, Ron Brown’s EVIDENCE Dance company, and the Malpaso Dance Company, for whom he has written two ballets.
As an educator, Arturo has taught master classes, seminars, and workshops throughout the world for students and teachers of all levels. From 2007-2008 he was Assistant Professor of Jazz at The University of Massachusetts in Amherst, and from 2008-2010, he served as Assistant Professor at SUNY Purchase. He is currently the Director of Jazz Studies at CUNY's Brooklyn College.
Arturo’s well-reviewed and highly praised “Afro-Latin Jazz Suite” from the current album CUBA: The Conversation Continues (Motéma) took the 2016 Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Composition as well as the 2016 Latin Grammy Award for Best Latin Jazz Recording. In addition, his composition “Three Revolutions” from the album Familia-Tribute to Chico and Bebo was the 2018 Grammy Award (his sixth) winner for Best Instrumental Composition.
His current album Fandango At The Wall: A Soundtrack for the United States, Mexico and Beyond (Resilience Music) is a passionate 3-part project meant to bring the people of the United States and Mexico together through music. After all, we don’t just share a border but families and friends, histories and futures. Our countries are interconnected, and our fates are interlinked. Indeed, we should root for and help each other.