Alejandro Avilés

Alejandro Avilés is a first generation Cuban-American who comes from a long lineage of musicians. In fact, Mr. Avilés' family has been considered by the Guinness Book of World Records for having the longest, continuous musical group in the world. The Orquesta Hermanos Avilés was started by his great-grandfather, Manuel Avilés, in 1882 in Holguin, Cuba, and remarkably is still in existence today.

In 2006, the Alejandro Avilés Latin Jazz Quartet was selected by the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and Jazz at Lincoln Center to represent the United States as "Jazz Ambassadors." The group toured Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, Mexico, Central America, Venezuela, Peru, and Argentina, conducting master classes and performing at concert halls.

Recently, Alejandro was honored with the endowment of the prestigious Fulbright Award which allows university professors to travel abroad and share their knowledge. Accordingly, Alejandro traveled to Brazil to teach saxophone, jazz history and jazz improvisation at the University of UFMG in Belo Horizonte, UNIRIO in Rio de Janeiro, and performed numerous concerts throughout Brasilia, São Paulo, Salvador, and Recife.

In 2015, Alejandro had the rare opportunity to travel to Cuba and perform in the Havana Jazz Festival with the “Afro-Latin Jazz Orchestra” led by pianist Arturo O’Farrill. After their performance the album “Cuba: The Conversation Continues” was recorded in Cuba and features contemporary composers and musicians from both Cuba and the United States. In 2016, the orchestra received the Grammy Award for best instrumental composition for large ensemble with “The Afro-Latin Jazz Suite” featuring Rudresh Mahanthappa.

Based in NYC, Alejandro Avilés works as an adjunct professor at both Hofstra University and Hunter College teaching saxophone and jazz improvisation while performing as a versatile musician in genres ranging from "Straight Ahead" jazz, “Brazilian” and "Afro-Cuban" music, to Broadway. When not on tour, you can catch Alejandro perform in many of New York's most renowned jazz clubs including Smoke, Jazz Standard, Zinc Bar, Smalls, Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola, Jazz Gallery, Iridium, Fat Cat, Birdland, and Blue Note.