Since arriving to the United States in 2013, Colombian harpist and composer Nicolas Castaneda has redirected his own path on music. He brings not only the Colombian harp and the traditional sounds from Colombia, but also a new original voice to jazz and Latin American music. His promising career has been remarkable for searching more possibilities of both performing the Colombian harp and developing a new identity and contemporary sounds through his experience as a composer.
Born in 1989 in Bogotá, Colombia, Castaneda began his career performing percussion instruments, clarinet and the harp; playing the folkloric music of his country. Since his early years studying music, Castaneda achieved many awards on his homeland due to his outstanding performance in national and international competitions. Then, Castaneda reached a scholarship to study at Berklee College of Music, where he obtained his Sum Laude degree on music majored in jazz composition on 2016; being the first folk Colombian harpist graduated from Berklee.
Nowadays, he is an active performer both at the Boston local scene and New York City. His music is based on the creation of new sounds, mixing Colombian traditional rhythms with contemporary music styles as heard on his album “Renacer” or Reborn in English, produced in 2014.
“It inspires me to continue in my search to evolve Colombian and Latin American music through my compositions,” remarks Castañeda, upon receiving his last award from the BMI Foundation in 2015, for his outstanding work as a Latin American composer.