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Panamerican Fusion in Composition: Where Jazz, Classical, and Pan-Latin Music Meet.

Doctoral Essay, University of Miami


In this essay I analyze compositional techniques used by selected Latin American award-wining pianist and jazz composers  who create cross-genre musical works. The pieces selected for this study are "Serenata," written for studio orchestra by Carlos Franzetti, "Bridge of Life, Part I," a woodwind quintet and piano trio composition by pianist Danilo Pérez, and "Miula" written for an eleven-piece ensemble and composed by Guillermo Klein. I analyzed each work by their musical traits, including instrumentation, form, rhythm, melody, harmony, texture, and orchestration. I also included relevant biographical information of each composers' historical and cultural background. Following this analysis, I provided an overview of the techniques I employ in my original compositions, inspired by the works of the composers in this study. The goal is to present a framework of compositional techniques for composers and arrangers to develop cross-genre pieces utilizing folk and popular styles with jazz, Pan-Latin, and Classical traditions.

My transcription of "Bridge of Life, Part I" written for Woodwind Quintet and Jazz Piano Trio, Composed by Danilo Perez.
Poster used at the 2024 International Jazz  Composers Symposium
Panamerican Fusion in Composition
With Danilo Perez at ISJAC symposium


This essay provides biographical information about my musical journey from my time in Colombia to the present. Initially, I prioritized professional collaborations, events, and my transition into jazz improvisation and composition. However, in a new biographical version, I intend to include key figures from my early education, such as my first piano teachers, Bertha Lucia Tello, Orfa Cruz, and Manfred Gerhardt.

Since my first composition for piano solo "Te agradezco" I have been  utilizing elements of jazz, Classical, and Colombian traditions.  This essay puts in written some of the ideas that have been part of me since my early musical days.


The composers in this study have been an inspiration for many years and writing about them was a a tribute for their contribution to the music world. 

If you have any questions about this research, please send me a message!
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"It is essential to acknowledge that Latin American composers often face the expectation that their music must prominently feature recognizable Latin American elements to be authentically categorized as such. However, each composer has the freedom of expression to present their influences through direct or abstract approaches to composition without limitations."

"The analysis of the music by Carlos Franzetti, Danilo Perez, and Guillermo Klein has allowed me to recognize that ultimately in order to write crossover works that mix jazz, Classical, and  Pan-Latin music, it is important to study deeper cultural musical traits that are part of each tradition in order to create a cohesive work. In the case of Latin American music, it is important to discover the nuances that characterize these traditions to understand the musical elements that are going to be taken into consideration when writing a cross genre composition."

"Serenata" by Carlos Franzetti, recorded in the album Alborada (2010)

"Bridge of Life, Part I" by Danilo Perez, recorded in the album Providencia (2010)

"Miula" by Guillermo Klein, recorded in the album Filtros (2008)

Some of my pieces based on this research

LEGADO (Midi, to be recorded).Carolina C.
00:00 / 08:29
BRISA (Midi, to be recorded).Carolina C.
00:00 / 06:10
HOPE (Midi, to be recorded)Carolina C.
00:00 / 05:33
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