Gerardo Contino, "El Abogado de la Salsa," is a Cuban singer and songwriter who has been part of several renowned Cuban bands in Havana since his youth. While in Cuba Gerardo was the lead singer for NG La Banda, one of the most recognized Cuban Salsa and Jazz orchestras in the country, directed by Jose Luis Cortes. As a member of different bands (NG La Banda, Son Yoruba and Charanga Forever) and with his own project, Gerardo has toured Italy, France, Spain, Denmark, Germany, Switzerland, Venezuela, Mexico, and Peru. He has performed in the following international festivals of salsa and jazz: Toulouse Festival, France; Latin American Festival of Milan, Italy; Festival Fiesta, Rome, Italy; Festival of Múnich, Switzerland, Copenhagen Festival, Denmark; Salsa Festival of Verona, Italy; and, Afro-American Roots of Maracay, Venezuela. In 2009 Gerardo started his own band project in New York City, with musicians Axel Tosca Laugart, and John Benitez.
Eliano Bráz is a violinist/violist native of Fortaleza, Ceará, Brazil. He began his violin and viola studies at age 11 with Vazken Fermanian at Sesi-Ce and The Conservatory of the Federal State University of Ceará. His experience ranges from classical orchestras, ensembles, various quartets, and trios to popular Brazilian music, playing with musicians such as Ermeto Pascal, Sivuca, Cyro Batista ,Faguiner, Rita Lee, Lulu Santos, Belchior, Skank, J’ Quest, Artul Moureira Lima. Since 2004 Bráz had been living in the United States, where he has performed with many orchestras and ensembles at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center's Alice Tuly Hall, Twon Hall and many other acclaimed venues. Bráz has played classical, Brazilian, jazz and folk music for over 24 years. His Forró Group plays popular Brazilian music from the Northeastern region of the country, fusing different kinds of music from all over Brazil and the world incorporating improvisations into their work. The sound of Forró music is best described as Brazilian folk music and incorporates various complex rhythms and lyrical melodies. Forró talks about love, romance and stories about the farmers from the northeast region of Brazil. During performances Eliano Bráz’s band engages with the audience teaching and encouraging people to dance and exposing them to Brazilian music and culture. The band consists of Eliano Bráz on the violin and vocals, Catarina dos Santos vocals and percussion, Rob Curto on accordion, Marcos Vigio on guitar, Itaiguara Brandao on bass and Gil Oliveira on bass drum.
From "Ruedame" group
Ethan Wagner is a dancer and instructor from New York known for his fun and interactive style that combines rueda de casino and Cuban salsa with the informal, creative movements of street dancing. He is the founder and director of Rueda at the Park, offering free salsa lessons to huge crowds in Central Park, and serves as the founder and director of the performance group Ruedame! He has directed Columbia University's salsa program for the last two years and taught and performed everywhere from New York and Puerto Rico to Qatar and the UAE. When he dances, he brings some serious flavor (mostly pistachio and cookies 'n' cream).
Beleza NYC is an eclectic event planning group which aims to open people to diverse communities by presenting infectious world music, art and culture in venues all over New York City.
Beleza NYC started in December 2006 showcasing small performance events with local Brazilian bands and DJs in the New York City area. Since then, we have become increasingly popular for its bi-monthly world dance parties that continue to offer eclectic crowds the hottest live world music and DJ’s.
Beleza NYC’s events are famous for taking the sexy and vibrant rhythms of Brazilian samba, bossa nova, pagode and forro, and blending them with the best of Latin American, African and American styles of music. This fresh combination undeniably energizes our crowds, spreading the uniquely Brazilian feeling of freedom, beauty and good vibrations embodied in the word ‘beleza’.
Now in its fifth year, Beleza NYC continues to succeed and expand. We have recently widened our focus, partnering with an array of musicians, writers, designers, photographers and other visual artists to create collaborative multimedia events and performances. Beleza has also ventured into hosting world class concerts at larger venues featuring musical acts from abroad. Dynamic events like these keep taking our brand to the next level and spreading the spirit of Beleza!
For more information about booking Beleza for your upcoming events contact Mirlet or Sabia at firstname.lastname@example.org.