Asako Arai is the flutist of Mexico City Woodwind Quintet and other chamber music groups active in Mexico City where she resides since 1989. Her recordings with these groups are available on Dorian, Urtext, Spartacus, Global and Soundspells labels. Her most recent CD “Without Borders” was released by Albany Records in 2009 and contains commissioned works for flute and piano, with the collaboration of pianists Ana María Tradatti and Cristina Valdes.
As a soloist, she has appeared with the UNAM Philharmonic Orchestra, Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, Emerson String Quartet, La Camerata, “Carlos Chávez” Symphony Orchestra, among others.
She has received grants from Fondo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes and Cultural Contact (Mexico/US Fund for Culture) which resulted in the commissioning, premiering and recording of Mexican and American works. She is very active in the field of contemporary music and has premiered numerous works in festivals such as the International Cervantino Festival, International New Music Forum, “Franco Donatoni” Contemporary Music Festival and New Music Miami.
Her articles have appeared in the Flutist Quarterly, Spectrum (a journal of the University of Hartford) and Pauta, a musical journal in Mexico. Dr. Arai is professor of flute and chamber music at Escuela Superior de Música in Mexico City. She holds a DMA and MM from SUNY Stony Brook and BM (summa cum laude) from Hartt School of Music. Her professors have included Samuel Baron, John Wion, Timothy Wilson and Keith Underwood.
(Ensenada, 1986) began his studies with Boris Glouzman at the age of 5 in the Centro de Estudios Musicales of the UABC. He was part of an academic exchange with the CNSMD of Paris with David Walter,. and was a 2-year (2011-2013) recipient of the FONCA's Fellowship for Study Abroad for a Master's Degree in Oboe at the Amsterdam Conservatory in the Netherlands where he received the highest qualification "Cum Laude" under the guidance of Professor Ernest Rombout as his main teacher, Jan Kouwenhoven (Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra) in orchestral practices and Alfredo Bernardini in baroque oboe. In 2013 - 2014 he was part of the academy of the Nederlands Philharmonisch Orkest and in the same year was selected to participate in the Youth Orchestra of the Americas (YOA).
Carlos has studied with the following important oboists such as David Walter, Gianfranco Bortolato, Alexei Ogrintchouk, Lucas Macias, Roland Perrenoud, Frank de Bruine, Didier Pateau, Gordon Hunt, Alex Klein and Hansjörg Schellenberger among others.
In the area of new music he has collaborated iwith the IMPULS Ensemble in Graz, Austria Amsterdam Nieuw Ensemble and the Center of Experimentation and Production of Contemporary Music (CEPROMUSIC) as well as other assembles in new music festivals in Mexico. As a baroque oboist, he has played oboe and different period instruments with several different projects and ensembles including Le concert de la loge with Philippe Jaroussky, Symphonie Atlantique and Alfredo Berbardini’s oboe band, among others. He has appeared in important venues both in the Americas and in Europe, including Het Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and Musikverein in Vienna.
Since 2016 he has been part of the National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico and member of the Mexico City Woodwind Quintet since 2017.
Rafael Prado Duran
Born and raised in the City of Villa de Álvarez, Colima, he received his first music theory and clarinet classes at the age of nine, continuing his training at the University Institute of Fine Arts (Colima) where he ontained his degree in music. He has presented concerts in the concert halls of Colima, Teatro Ocampo in Morelos, Sala Hermilo Novelo and Silvestre Revueltas at the Ollin Yoliztli Cultural Center, Sala Xochipilli UNAM, Sala Blas Galindo, Sala Nezahualcóyotl, and the Palacio de Bellas Artes, in Mexico City. He has performed in the Festival México Mágico 2009 in France, and in the Principe Felipe de Asturias Auditorium, as part of the student recitals at the International Music School, Estoril Music Week, and at the Castelo de Paiva International Clarinet Festival 2013 in Portugal, as well as in the 4th European Clarinet Congress in Katowice, Poland. and ClarinetFest Madrid 2015, UNAM University Clarinet Festival 2015, 2017. He was principal clarinetist of the Mexiquense Symphony Orchestra, and the Boca del Río Philharmonic Orchestra. He has played with the Philharmonic Orchestra of the National Autonomous University of Mexico OFUNAM. ESMAE Porto Symphony Orchestra, Portugal, Yucatan Symphony, Ónix Ensemble, Cepromusic, Xalapa Symphony Orchestra and the Philharmonic Orchestra of Mexico City. He has been awarded several grants from the following: Production Bank of the Ministry of Culture 2020, where he recorded the three pieces by I. Stravinsky for Clarinet solo, on channel 23, "Raíz México: Artistic Tours Colima" 2021, and the Program to Encourage Creation and Artistic Development, PECDA Colima 2021. He is currently a member of the Mexico City Woowind Quintet. He has prmiered the clarinet concerto by Karol Kurpinski in Mexico in its transcription for the Symphonic Band with the Ensemble de Alientos de la Ciudad de México. He was a soloist with the SONORO 2013 Festival Orchestra in the city of Cuernavaca, under the baton of Rodrigo Macías. He made the world premiere of the concerto for clarinet and orchestra “Bosquejos sobre un duel de cañas” by the distinguished Mexican composer Arturo Márquez.
Cristian received his first horn lessons with his father Juan Cornejo. At the age of 12 years he entered into CONACULTA`s program Orquesta-Escuela and participated as a soloist playing Mozart`s third concerto and Mozart Sinfonia Concertante for winds.
He has been a member of Carlos Chavez Youth Orchestra and the Eduardo Mata Youth Orchestra. As a guest musician, Cristian has performed with the OSIPN, OFUNAM, OFCM and recently played two seasons as principal horn with the National Symphony of Mexico.
The young horn player also studied with the renowned musicians Radek Baborak, Premysl Vojta, Andre Cazalet and Bruno Schneider.
He has participated in International Festivals such as Chicago Youth Music Festival, Young Euro Classic Music Festival and the Enrique Crespo Academy.
He has received the Brass Academy Alicante scholarship to study under Nury Guarnaschelli ex-horn soloist of Radio-Symphonieorchester Wien and Orchestal repertory with Rudolf Korp ex-trumpet soloist of Tonkünstlerorchester Wien.
Wendy Holdaway studied bassoon at the New England Conservatory, obtaining her Master's Degree and working with the Boston Opera. Since settling in México she has played with the Fine Arts Opera Orchestra and the Orchestra of the State of México. She is currently principal bassoon of the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional.
In 1992 she was awarded a grant from the Council for the Arts to create a new repertoire for bassoon and piano. With both the Mexico City Woodwind Quintet and Trio Neos she has received multiple grants from Fondo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes and Cultural Contact (Mexico/US Fund for Culture) which resulted in the commissioning, premiering and recording of Mexican and American works.
With the Mexico City Woodwind Quintet she has recorded four compact discs of Mexican music and Latin American music. She has also collaborated with many Mexican composers in the creation and recording of their music. With Trio Neos she has recorded four compact discs of Mexican and Latin American music, including one of music of women composers of the Americas and classical works written for the combination. With Mario Lavista she recorded both a video and a compact disc of his piece "Responsorio" for bassoon and percussion.
As a soloist she has performed with many of the orchestras of México with repertoire ranging from the classics to the twenty first century and continues to champion the new music of Mexican composers for bassoon.
She currently teaches bassoon and chamber music at the "Vida y Movimiento" (Conservatory of Music) where she created and wrote the syllabus for bassoon and the wind chamber music program.