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Berklee's Mario Castro Quintet performs at the Newport Jazz Festival
(Published: August 02, 2011)

Berklee's Mario Castro Quintet performs at the Newport Jazz Festival,
presented by Natixis Global Asset Management

Students join star-studded lineup, including many Berklee alumni

August 1, 2011, Boston, MA - Berklee College of Music's Mario Castro Quintet will perform at the 57th annual Newport Jazz Festival, which features some of the most innovative acts in jazz, on four stages, over three days. Castro's band, composed of some of Berklee's finest musicians, has been a regular fixture at Wally's Café, the legendary Boston club where many of the best young jazz players have cut their teeth.

The Quintet's performance will be heard later that day on NPRmusic.org, as part of NPR's series of live recordings captured at the 2011 Newport Jazz Festival.
The Newport Jazz Festival takes place August 5-7. The Mario Castro Quintet will perform on Sunday, August 7, at 11:15 a.m. on the festival's Harbor Stage, at Fort Adams State Park, Harrison Avenue, in Newport, RI. For tickets and information, visit http://www.newportjazzfest.net.

The Mario Castro Quintet joins a festival lineup filled with Berklee alumni, among them Dan Brubeck, Avishai and Anat Cohen, Henry Cole, Al DiMeola, Hans Glawischnig, Hiromi, Grace Kelly, Guillermo Klein, Rudresh Mahanthappa, Matt Penman, Walter Smith III, Esperanza Spalding, and Miguel Zenón.

Hailed by the New York Times as "the festival that put jazz festivals on the map," the Newport Jazz Festival was founded by jazz pianist George Wein in 1954 as the first outdoor music festival of its kind devoted entirely to jazz. Referred to as "a Mecca of jazz," the event draws thousands of people from all over the world to its uniquely picturesque outdoor stages at the International Tennis Hall of Fame and Fort Adams State Park.

Natixis Global Asset Management is the presenting sponsor of the Newport Jazz Festival. Headquartered in Paris and Boston, Natixis provides investment solutions to both institutions and individual clients. The company also sponsors
Berklee's Summer in the City music series, including the Berklee BeanTown Jazz Festival.

Mario Castro Quintet - Bios:
Mario Castro - From Humacao, Puerto Rico, saxophonist Mario Castro began his musical studies at the age of 12, and later became interested primarily in jazz. In 2004 he performed in the Puerto Rico Heineken Jazz Festival with the Berklee in Puerto Rico Big Band, and his performance brought him to Berklee. He has performed with a great variety of artists and groups such as the Puerto Rico Philharmonic Orchestra, Giovanni Hidalgo, Humberto Ramirez, Mike Clark, Horacio "El Negro" Hernandez, Davíd Sanchez, Paoli Mejias and many more. Today Mario leads his quintet, and attends Berklee full time.

David Neves - Born in 1989, trumpeter David Neves is the winner of the 2010 International Trumpet Guild Jazz Competition. He has just completed his studies at Berklee College of Music and the Berklee Global Jazz Institute, where he's had the pleasure of studying with some of his favorite jazz musicians, including Danilo Perez, Joe Lovano, Ben Street, John Patitucci, Tiger Okoshi, and Hal Crook, to name a few.

Jonathan Pinson - Jonathan's dynamic and explosive percussion sound has been described as that of a "young Elvin Jones". His formal music training began at the age of six with instruction on the piano. He transitioned to the drum set in 1999 with instruction by Jerry Kalaf, at Los Angeles' Colburn School of Performing Arts, up until 2007. He's been fortunate to have the opportunity to study with the late, great Billy Higgins, at the World Stage in Los Angeles, California. Jonathan came to Berklee on the full-tuition Jimmy Lyons Scholarship, awarded at the Monterey Jazz Festival, and named after the festival's founder.

Tamir Shmerling - A double and electric bass player from Israel, Tamir completed his mandatory national service as a bass player for the Israeli Defense Forces Orchestra from 2005 to 2008, performing with the orchestra around Israel, Europe and the US. He held the bass chair in both the Tel Aviv and Holon big bands, directed by Amikam Kimelman and Guri Agmon respectively, and in the "Israeli Idol" TV show band. Prior to coming to Berklee, Tamir studied at the Rimon School of Jazz and Contemporary Music on a scholarship, and was a student of Eli Magen from 2008 - 2009.

KyuMin Shim was born in Seoul, Korea in 1984 and began to play the piano at age five. He began with focused on classical music, but soon after he started playing the jazz piano, he won the performance prize in Jazz Music Competition held by Seoul Institute of The Arts (SITA), one of the best music schools in Korea. A year later, SITA presented him with a full scholarship. Since 2009, he's been studying at Berklee on scholarship, where he works with Joanne Brackeen, Danilo Pérez, Ed Tomassi, to name a few.

Tickets for the Newport Jazz Festival Presented by Natixis Global Asset Management are on sale worldwide through www.ticketmaster.com and www.newportjazzfest.net as well as by phone, by mail and at the new Festival office at the Alex and Ani store at One Bowen's Wharf during limited hours. General admission tickets (single-day passes only) also can be purchased at the Newport Visitor Information Center, located at 23 America's Cup Avenue. For general information, craft vendor information or to leave a message for festival staff, call (401) 848-5055. For more information, log on to www.newportjazzfest.net.

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More Information: http://www.newportjazzfest.net

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