Fri Sep 15
1073 Wisconsin Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20007
“This young musician and composer is at once reestablishing the artistic, cultural, and social tradition of jazz while creating an entirely new jazz language for the 21st century.” — MacArthur Foundation
Multiple Grammy Nominee and Guggenheim and MacArthur Fellow Miguel Zenón represents a select group of musicians who have masterfully balanced and blended the often contradictory poles of innovation and tradition. Widely considered as one of the most groundbreaking and influential saxophonists and composers of his generation, he has also developed a unique voice as a conceptualist, concentrating his efforts on perfecting a fine mix between Jazz and his many musical influences.
Born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, Zenón has built a distinguished career as a leader, releasing fifteen albums under his own name. In addition, he has crafted his artistic identity by dividing his time equally between working with older jazz masters and the music’s younger innovators –irrespective of styles and genres. The list of musicians Zenón has toured and/or recorded with includes The SFJAZZ Collective, Charlie Haden, Fred Hersch, Kenny Werner, David Sánchez, Danilo Perez, The Village Vanguard Orchestra, Kurt Elling, Guillermo Klein & Los Guachos, The Jeff Ballard Trio, Antonio Sanchez, Brian Lynch, Joey Calderazzo, Steve Coleman, Ray Barreto, Andy Montañez, Jerry Gonzalez & The Fort Apache Band, The Mingus Big Band and Bobby Hutcherson.
As a composer he has been commissioned by SFJAZZ, NYO Jazz, The New York State Council for the Arts, Chamber Music America, Logan Center for The Arts, The Hyde Park Jazz Festival, The John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, MIT, Spektral Quartet, The Hewlett Foundation, Peak Performances, PRISM Quartet and many of his peers.
Zenón has been featured in articles on publications such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, The Chicago Tribune, Revista Milenio, Bloomberg Pursuits, Jazz Times, Jazziz, Boston Globe, Billboard, Jazz Inside, Newsday and Details. In addition he topped both the Jazz Artist of the Year and Alto Saxophonist of the Year categories on the 2014 Jazz Times Critics Poll and was selected as the Alto Saxophonist of the Year by the Jazz Journalist Association in 2015, 2018, 2019 and 2020 (when he was also recognized as Arranger of The Year).