Category Archives: General News

Toomai Featured on New Album: Virginia Luque’s Celebration of Leo Brouwer

Members of Toomai are featured on guitar virtuoso Virginia Luque’s new album, Danza de Medianoche, A Celebration of Leo Brouwer. This is a beautiful compilation of guitar works by the great Cuban composer Leo Brouwer. Toomai can be heard on the last three tracks of the album (19–21), Baladas del Cameron Negro for guitar and string quartet. This piece, translated […]

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Cuerdas Cubanas turns 2! Now Available on Bandcamp!

It’s been two years since we released our first album, Cuerdas Cubanas! The album has already been available on iTunes, Spotify, and YouTube, but for this anniversary, we have released Cuerdas Cubanas to stream and download on Bandcamp. https://toomaistringquintet.bandcamp.com/album/cuerdas-cubanas This platform offers features which are rare for online listening—album art, lyrics, and liner notes. These will allow listeners […]

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Toomai’s Debut Album, Cuerdas Cubanas, is available!

We have finished our debut album titled Cuerdas Cubanas! This recording features eleven original arrangements of classic Cuban songs by Ernesto Lecuona, Beny Moré, Israel “Cachao” López, and more. Special guest vocalist Alina Roitstein joins us for several tracks as we transform this music, representing a range of Cuban styles, into works for string ensemble. Within […]

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Meeting a Great Cuban Artist: Gonzalo Borges

Toomai’s upcoming album, Cuerdas Cubanas, is all Cuban music—so we wanted the cover to feature Cuban art. After months of searching, we found an image that we felt was a true companion to our music. Here is the story of how our bassist, Andrew, met the artist Gonzalo Borges. I took a trip to Miami […]

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Toomai’s Upcoming Album—Stay Tuned!

This last summer, Toomai went into the studio to record music for our upcoming album! This project features music by all Cuban composers, arranged by Toomai’s bassist Andrew Roitstein. On select tracks, special guest Alina Roitstein shares her beautiful vocals for some classic salsa and bolero tunes. The album will be released in Spring 2018, […]

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Happy 2016 from Toomai!

Although it is already February, Toomai wants to wish everyone a happy 2016! This year marks our 9th year as an ensemble, and it is a time of significant change and progress for Toomai. We would like to reflect on 2015, as well as give an update on all the changes that 2016 brings!   The Early […]

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Early Quintets Project Announced for 2015

We are thrilled to announce our new endeavor for the Winter and Spring of 2015, the Early Quintets Project! Toomai will curate and perform in a series of workshops and performances in collaboration with New York Philharmonic’s Very Young Composers program (VYC) and SPECTRUM NYC.  We will be working with five prestigious American composers and ten amazing very young composers (ages 10-14) from the […]

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Songs Without Words…

When we’re approached about conducting an educational project at a school or institution new to Toomai, we welcome the opportunity to meet new people and to acquaint ourselves with the community. But it also gives us the chance to design a whole new program especially for that audience — which in turn is an opportunity […]

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Beautiful Dreamer…

Summer usually sends members of Toomai their separate ways — Vermont, Italy, Brazil, San Francisco and Kentucky all played host to us Toomai-ers at various times this summer. But one week in August brought Toomai back together, and the setting couldn’t have been more gorgeous — Rockport, Maine, at the Bay Chamber Festival that happens […]

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Springtime in Queens…

2013 has been a great year for Toomai so far, full of interesting and varied projects, the most recent of which was an appearance on Carnegie Hall’s Neighborhood Concert Series, presented at the Queens Library @ Flushing – which we learned is one of the busiest libraries in the country! It was fantastic to play for […]

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