Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

Stage+prior+to+Paquito+D%27Rivera%27s+performance+at+the+Manchester+Craftsmen%27s+Guild
Back to Article
Back to Article

Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

Stage prior to Paquito D'Rivera's performance at the Manchester Craftsmen's Guild

Stage prior to Paquito D'Rivera's performance at the Manchester Craftsmen's Guild

Stage prior to Paquito D'Rivera's performance at the Manchester Craftsmen's Guild

Stage prior to Paquito D'Rivera's performance at the Manchester Craftsmen's Guild

Sam Bisno, Editor-in-Chief

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






If you were looking for a way to escape the Trump rally on Saturday evening and watching the Pirates simultaneously lose 13-5 and 15-1 wasn’t cutting it, one place you could have sought refuge was at the Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild, where world-renowned Cuban jazz artist Paquito D’Rivera was performing live in front of a near sellout crowd. D’Rivera, a 14-time Grammy award winner and laureate of countless honors including a 2005 National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Masters selection and a National Medal of Arts, was accompanied by bassist Oscar Stagnaro, drummer Vince Cherico, pianist Alex Brown, and trumpeter/trombonist Diego Urcola. D’Rivera himself, sporting a bright red button-down beneath a sleek black vest with bright white slip-ons to boot, played saxophone and clarinet.

The set lasted around an hour and a half, but to those in the audience it felt like mere minutes as the group wove seamlessly from piece to piece, the only interruption when D’Rivera, his trademark voice much like his music – smooth – would stop to crack a joke every now and then. Each song brought with it a new, refreshing perspective on the genre as a whole – a modern take on “Salt Peanuts” in tribute to the late Dizzy Gillespie; a unique rendition of “Night in Tunisia”; an original composition, “Pa Bebo” from his album Jazz Meets the Classics; each solo was more impressive than the last – Stagnaro’s laid back, too-school-for-school demeanor; Cherico’s perfect rhythm; Brown’s fingers, almost invisible as they whizzed about the keys; Urcola’s composure, grinning to his colleagues as he dished out a master class on pitch and dynamic; and, of course, D’Rivera, his face the color of his shirt as he blew madly into his instrument, the product an intricate web of sound.

More than anything, the sheer effortlessness of it all was astonishing – the ability to improvise on the spot, to communicate with one another mid-performance, to render entire songs from memory after realizing they forgot the sheet music (yes, that really happened), while still maintaining a casual vibe, still managing to have fun, was truly extraordinary. Even after the lights came on, the applause remained so persistent that, as the man phrased it, he had “no choice but to play one more”.

D’Rivera lives in New Jersey, so he often finds himself in Pittsburgh on nights like last. If you ever get a chance to attend one of his shows, I strongly recommend that you take advantage of the opportunity. I assure you: it will be unlike anything you have ever experienced.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Navigate Left
  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    The Problem with Dress Codes

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Obama Seniors on Their Last Year of High School

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    Creative Writing

    Hear Me Out

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Youth Participatory Budget Council Presents Proposal on Gentrification to City Council

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Obama Baseball Wins Walk-Off Thriller

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    UPMC-Highmark Consent Decree: Where We Stand

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Summer Lee Announces Police Reform Proposals in Response to Shootings, Protests

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Obama YAG Wins Big at Model Convention

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Senior of the week: Jason Thomas

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    A Day After Protests, Students Share Why They Didn’t Go

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Who Will be the Democratic Presidential Candidate in 2020?

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Michael Rosfeld’s Acquittal is Just Another in a Long Line of Abuses of Power

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Michael Rosfeld Acquitted on All Charges for the Killing of Antwon Rose II

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Senior of the Week: Mya Young

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    “Savior Samuel” Celebrates 15th Anniversary of Pittsburgh Playwrights Theater Company

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Dr. Knox and Mr. Mal

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Senior of the Week: Raven Haston

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Northside Chronicle Editor Ashlee Green on Hyper-Local Journalism

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    The Green Book

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Why Going BPA-Free Might Not Be As Great As You Think

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Senior of the Week Talaya Caldwell

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Responses to The Hate U Give

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Black Life

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Senior of the Week: Ava Eckenrode

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Senior of the Week: Ta’Shown Taylor

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Students Frustrated by New Bus Pass Failures

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    LeadYoung Initiative: Sophie Levitt

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Reflecting on the Life of Jonathan Freeman

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    Author, Harvard Professor Jill Lepore on the Historical Record and the Direction of the Future

  • Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh

    All Posts

    An Interview with Mayor Marita Garrett

Navigate Right
Pittsburgh Barack Obama Academy of International Studies
Paquito D’Rivera Comes to Pittsburgh