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Applications to perform or to propose a clinic at the 68th Annual Midwest Clinic are now available!

Exhibitor Contract Advertiser Contract

Two Three or Not Two Three That is The Question? Essential Rhythms of Afro-Cuban based Latin Jazz

  • thumbnail for Ruben P. Alvarez
  • This clinic serves as an introduction to essential rhythms, instruments utilized in a contemporary Latin jazz performance. General music education teachers will learn a simple and effective methodology to learn and teach the rhythmic vocabulary of essential Afro-Cuban music styles and percussion. Ensemble directors can learn and teach ensemble musicians these rhythms to help them perform and solo on Latin arrangements with a “groove” that pro Latin jazz musicians refer to as the “Latin swing”.
  • Ruben P. Alvarez (
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  • Rubén P. Alvarez is a Latin percussionist, drum set artist, composer, and music educator. His performance credits include musical theatre as a percussionist and musical consultant for the Goodman Theatre production of Crowns, and a percussionist in the Broadway Chicago productions of The Lion King, and On Your Feet. He has performed and or recorded with blues artists John Mayall and Junior Wells, rock artists Dave Mason and Dennis De Young, Jennifer Hudson, and Aretha Franklin, and Latin jazz artists Arturo Sandoval, Dave Valentín, and Ramsey Lewis, Patricia Barber, Roy Hargrove. He performed on drum set, and timbales on the Chuchito Valdés CD, “Made in Chicago”, and recorded and performed with the 2010 Grammy and Latin Orbert Davis and the Chicago Jazz Philharmonic, Grammy nominees Sones De Mexico Ensemble, Rubén is also the leader and music director of the Raices Latin Jazz Ensemble, Rubén teaches drum set and Latin percussion, and directs Latin jazz ensembles at Roosevelt University, Prairie State College, and the Chicago High School for the Arts. He has served as a residency artist for Chicago area students for over 30 years, and 12 years as a member of the Jazz Institute of Chicago Jazz Links Master Artists Residency Program. Rubén has served for over 25 years as a clinician and endorser for industry leaders in music education, DW/Latin Percussion instruments, Remo percussion drumheads, Vic Firth sticks and mallets, and Zildjian cymbals. He is a founding member and has served as a member of the Board of Directors of The Jazz Education Network, the Board of Governors of the Chicago Chapter of the Recording Academy, and Vice President of the Illinois chapter of the Percussive Arts Society. He currently serves on the World Percussion committee of the Percussive Arts Society. Rubén, has received the Percussive arts Service Award, and was named the 2018 Jazz Educator of the Year by the Jazz Institute of Chicago.