Talking about the latest thing in early music may sound as oxymoronic as talking about jumbo shrimp, but there really is a “latest thing” in early music and it goes by the name Rumbarroco.
Early Music Now is bringing the Boston-based early music ensemble and its trademark fusion of Latin and Baroque sounds to UWM’s Zelazo Center on Oct. 17.
Latin/Baroque fusion you ask?
Laury Gutiérrez, spokeswoman for Rumbarroco, explained in a recent phone interview that it makes perfect sense.
Calling the group’s performances “very lively music,” she explained that the music reflects the European/Latin/indigenous DNA of many South Americans.
Raised in Venezuela, Gutiérrez was immersed in folk music from early childhood. She fell in love with the sound of viola da gamba after high school, which put her on a path of early music study that took her to Indiana University and Harvard.
“Many people are trying to do a fusion of music that is European and Latin American,” she said. “They say here is the European and here is the Latin, but they don’t meet. That’s where we are new and exciting.”
She explained that Rumbarroco will take a Baroque piece and a Latin piece with the same harmonic progressions and instead of playing first one piece and then the other, back to back, they will “fit them one on top of the other so that you hear them simultaneously.”
“This is a very passionate, moving performance,” she said, “but at the same time it’s educational. It’s about where the past and the present meet.”