HAGERSTOWN >> Prepare for a singular jazz and Latin experience Aug. 2 as four accomplished musicians, who comprise the Duende Quartet, make the halls of Washington County Museum of Fine Arts, 401 Museum Drive, reverberate with their fantastic talent.
Drawing on a vast repertoire highlighted by modern jazz compositions and traditional Cuban songs — the latter with perfect timing as relations with Cuba have been restored — the group's "original yet traditional" music brings a new beat.
They will be in Hagerstown for one day only. The concert is to begin at 2:30 p.m. Seating is limited to 100.
The U.S. State Department has chosen the group to tour internationally as part of its American Music Abroad program. That they have been a hit is best exemplified by a review in an Indian newspaper which noted that they were received with "rapturous applause."
The four members of the group — Harry Applemann, piano; Josh Schwartzman, bass; and Mark Merella and Sam "Seguito" Turner, percussionists — area all well known for the quality of their performance and the range of their musical knowledge. Each has distinguished credentials and extensive experience.
Appleman, a performer and educator, has toured with such notable groups as the Woody Herman Orchestra and the Artie Shaw Orchestra, making music on five continents.
Considered one of Washington, D.C.'s best jazz artists, Schwartzman is known as the founder of the east coast Rumba Club, its bassist and contributing arranger and composer for more than 17 years. He studied arranging and composition privately with the late Dr. Asher Zlotnik of the Peabody Institute of Music in Baltimore.
Merella, a teacher for more than 20 years, has performed with Mary Wilson of The Supremes and percussion legend Candido Camero, among others. He has played on the embassy circuit in Washington, D.C., and performed at both the White House and the Kennedy Center.
Turner has worked with such music legends as Machito, Frank Sinatra, James Brown, and Charlie Mingus. He was the sideman for Lionel Hampton for 15 years, performed with Monguito Santamaria on his classic recordings, and performed on Broadway in shows such as "The Wiz."
The four live up to their name. "Duenda," which can be translated from the Spanish with the dark connotation of "goblin" or the more light-hearted "imp," both express the spirited feeling that flows through their music.
Tickets are $10, but museum members and children 12 and younger enter free.
For tickets and information, call 301-739-5727 or www.wcmfa.org.