On Monday, June 28, Q2 presents the music of Gabriela Lena Frank in the next installment of our monthly Composer Introduction series. Listen in all week to get to know Gaby and her refreshingly unique compositional voice. Hear her music spotlighted on Q2, but also, for this week only, grab a free download of Himno De Zamponas and Chasqui from the Chiara Quartet's recording of her celebrated work Leyendas: An Andean Walkabout!
Frank was born in Berkeley, Calif. to a Peruvian/Chinese mother and a Lithuanian/Jewish father. Reconciling and understanding her heritage has always been at the heart of her music. She finds inspiration in this struggle and uses it to makes her music vibrant and distinctive.
Frank is able to seamlessly meld Latin American musical influences with the rigorous classical tradition of study she received at Rice University. A musical anthropologist of sorts, she travels around South America to collect field recordings of native folk music and instruments and uses these recordings to inform and inspire her compositions.
Frank has been commissioned by a number of respected ensembles, including the Chiara, Kronos, and Brentano String Quartets, as well as the San Francisco Symphony and the Utah Symphony. In 2009 she received a Latin Grammy for her work Inca Dances for guitar and string quartet.